What to Expect When Your Adult Child Becomes a Foster Parent

Guest Post by Brian Herzog, father of Dropping Anchors Mama Stephanie Hagen

It is definitely a mixed bag of emotions to watch your child enter into foster parenting. There’s the incredible pride to know your adult child is doing something that really matters and makes a difference. That they are giving their life and unconditional love to littles who really need it. Children who may have had experiences even as infants that no one should have to experience regardless of age.

That brings the “mixed” part of the proverbial bag; the suffering these little ones have endured; the trauma that will impact their precious lives, emotionally, psychologically, socially, physically, maybe forever; the overwhelming sense of the pain these children are living. Those things bring fear and sadness to me as a foster grandparent. Fear that my child will be hurt emotionally, psychologically, or physically by total immersion into loving and serving the children. Sadness for the “hard” that is sometimes every day.


The pendulum then swings back the other way as my child becomes something unexpectedly brilliant. A force of unconditional love that flows in a beautiful, powerful, healing way that I thought impossible. Someone who more than rises to the occasion. That is overwhelming in a beautiful way. It inspires hope for hurting children. A gratefulness that there are those who have the unbelievable capacity to do this work.

I am so thankful and honored to get to occasionally, if only for a very short time, be “Papa” to sweet little ones that are being loved so wonderfully by one that I love.

Brian has been in full-time church ministry for the past thirty-four years. He has served in churches in Missouri and Illinois in positions as Youth Pastor, Worship Pastor, Associate Pastor, and is currently serving at Potter’s House Church as Creative and Technical Director. Brian recently went back to college and received a second degree in Music Therapy and is a Board Certified Music Therapist, Neurological Music Therapist, and works with clients both in private and group sessions.


About Alisha Palmer

Alisha is an adult adoptee that has been a therapeutic and medically fragile foster parent since 2012, caring for many children from medically fragile infants to therapeutic teenagers, and numerous in between. In 2015 she adopted their two amazing daughters from the foster care system. She is a foster care and adoption advocate who strives to encourage others to step out of their comfort zone and into this world, providing love and stability to children during their darkest times. Follow her on Instagram @alishaypalmer.
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1 Response to What to Expect When Your Adult Child Becomes a Foster Parent

  1. Trent Bocan says:

    This is a beautiful story. Great appreciation to you and yours for helping children to be somebody’s someone!
    I have been researching relative to emancipated youth and meeting their basic needs through a CARE program (Cultivating Awareness and Resources through Education). Just finished an article, “Of Mountains and Molehills: College can be an Answer for Emancipated and Disadvantaged Youth”. It is posted on our site at The Guideline Blog, guidance-for-life.com. The article details the need to meet the basic needs of those emancipated from foster care, who have not been adopted.
    Appreciate the work you do and the care demonstrated by your child.

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