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#10803 - 03/05/11 07:00 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: Dianne E.]
ABsfostermom Offline

Registered: 02/24/11
Posts: 3
Hello all

Not very computer savvy so if I am going about this all wrong please let me know.

Now thats out of the way I'ld like to give a bit of a background on our situation.
I am a fostermom and our family has fostered for 7yrs now. I have worked with young offenders for over 20 yrs. We have 2 biological kids 18 and 19 and we only foster children under 12(thats where we start, we don't toss them aside once they reach adolesence, but to date have never had a child remain longer than 1 yr.). We also only foster one child at a time.

Our current fosterdaughter has resided with us for a year. Her Mother is in the process of reliquishing parental custody. In essence divourcing the child. Mom adopted child when she was 6 days old and claims the child has Fetal Alcohol Disorder. Although there is no medical confirmation and the child does not have any of the physical features of this syndrome.

Mom claims she was and is unable to control child( started at the age of 6) and claims she is vicious but has never explained what she means by this. Mom states that the child is not capable about caring about anyone but herself and has destroyed Moms life. I was horrified when she confided this and was angry with mother and I am still am on one level. I am having a hard time comming to terms that children are refundable. Oh it should be mentioned that Mom is a teacher.

So that is how she came to us at 11. Her first 4 months in care she went through 2 other homes with both families stating (in confidence to us) that there were no major behavioural issues like aggresssion ect just as one put it "a constant air of discomfort when the child lived with them". We were not deterred and believe all children have the right to be cared for but are now beginning to second guess our decision and are torn because she's a child.....alone and unwanted! The following is a list of oberservations of our past year with this child we'll call her A

On first meeting asked me if I would pray with her...some tears because of the new enviornment...but no saddness as we have experienced with our other foster kids. Was very dramatic and stated praying always helped(last placement were very very christian) As a year has passed she has never made this request and Mother states religion was not a significant force in their home.

The 2nd night left a note for 17yr old son asking if they could hook up later as she was sad and really needed someone to care. Rules boundaries and expectations clearly outlined

No crying or sadness still. I thought she was kind of wierd (phony) She tried to act like an adult was very polite and apppeared overly responsible. I recall saying to my husband I feel like she's putting on a show as all of her interactions appeared rehersed

She constantly switches personas...she uses baby talk and will be all sappy, or she attempts to sound like a super cool teenager but only sounds weird, a 30yr women in control of everything and quite professional. Or the darker sides; mean, slanderous and vindictive

After a month more behaviours surfaced.

My 2 nieces same age were at our family cottage. Both nieces got into a fight with each other and were competing for A's(foster daughter) friendship. The girls never fought and by the 2nd day we pleading to their parents that they wanted to go home. Nothing concrete given and to date refuse to attend any family functions if A is going to be there.

The lying stared...over nothing and for no reason. Each time A was confronted she was upset that we suspected a lie and even faced with hard proof would stick to her guns. She would cry and lure me in with no one cares, my own mother hates me. So I believe her at least 3x now only to discover the truth. Then the routine is dropped and there is zero remorse. Sometimes if a consequence is instated for lying she will confessed.

When caught her facial expression and body posture change. There is no remorse just anger over consequence or being exposed. Minutes later she can engage in a cheerful conversation without a hint of previous actions. When told consequences still applied her eyes always get icy and body posture changes. Its un-nerving

Stealing began....we have an open door policy based on mutal respect but quickly learned that social code was non existant in A. She would eat all of the strawberries all treats, all the ice cream ( she has never been denied food or treats), steal sons ipod(has her own) or hide it. Steal money when given an allowance ect. My daughter jewelry went missing most significantly a necklace her father gave her for graduating with honors. A is very jealous and spiteful towards our daughter who at 18 is unphased by A's odd behaiours but still thinks she a little "off". No one is exempted even the family puppy was subjected to this behaviour. Pups toys kept disappearing everyone search for them A included but were not found. Weeks later found them hidden in her room. When confronted she played dumb but 5 toys are hard to explain...she then said I hate that stupid thing it gets all the attention.

Both my almost adult children complained she freaks them out because she constantly lurks around the house and spies on them. My son says its just the way she looks at me. I keep telling them to be kind. But most of the time A prefers to be alone and spends an abnormal amount of time alone in her room and can not be coaxed out and becomes angry if not given the choice.

She continues to fixate on males in a very sexual manner and becomes angry when they don't give her attention. On my eldest graduation she had a bar-b-q, A had been with us for about 3-4 months. At this party, remember she's 11, she zero in on 2 very cute 18yr boys. Both real nice kids. They were kind to her and then... she turned cooky. She statred to make inapproprite comments innocent enough but very awkward for these young men(similar in context with our son) The boys informed us and kindly told her she was just a little girl and it wasn't cool . She then carved, "boys name" loves A in a table for all to see that night. She even got a lite-brite out and wrote "Boy's name loves me". Again everyone saw it. When confronted in private so as not too embarrass her she denied it and when I refused to back down she was very mad at me for not believing her and was completely unaware of how awkward/odd her behaviour was. Later she wrote both boys a letter(without my knowledge) chastising them for violating her trust by going to me and was attempting to punish them verbally. It was very hostile. Remember they just met that evening, shes 11 and there were 10 kids at the bar-b-q. Later when she found out that one of the boy's was dating my daughters friend she targeted this 18 girl saying unkind and untrue things about this girl and forgets to relay phone calls from this girl ect.

Then there was our neighbour across the street a 13yr boy. He too was nice to her. She built a shrine all about him(Played togehter twice)and slept under the window the closest she could get to his home. Again asked what was up and she seemed completly unaware of how odd this behaviour was. She never once considered wether or not any of these boys had feelings...its I like...I want...Its mine end of story. As it stands now this boy goes out of his way to avoid her, his Mom says he dosent't give any specific reason just that she creeps him out

We had to ban internet access as she was bullying female peers and we discovered that at school she was able to conn a teacher into using internet. There she had registered herself on an adult date site posted photos of herself but lied about her age. On our home computer we discovered she was reaserching how to attract a man using sex, how to capture a boy and how to preform oral sex.

She has no friends. None at Mothers home, none at old school or new one. She has 5 cousins around her age who she has no contact with, no aunt, uncle or grandparent inquire about her nor she of them. All of our previous foster kids had some support from other family members...not A. All of our attempts to introduce and initiate age appropriate female peer relations have failed. There are 7 girls in our immidiate neighbourhood all her age. Each and everyone they started off great, parents were buying lunches taking her and their children to special events then it just end. Usually within a week the girls refused to play with her, many hide from her. The girl next door cried when A and I knocked on door she hid behind her father. When I discuss this with neighbours (we are all on good terms )no one has any thing specific to identify she dosen't hit or asked them to "bade" things they just say that their daughters say she's weird and they feel uncomfortable around her

We put her in a new school this Sept the teacher was immediately drawn to her and advocated and constantly praised her. She very charming around adults. That lasted a month and a half...the teacher started noticing that any time A observed her giving attention to another student A targeted that child or complained that the child was bullying her. The teacher stated she has a mean streak and she has almost been suspended 2x. Again they either feel sorry for her..poor foster kid...or the behaviours although unkind not really all that bad.

"A" has difficulty with math but reads above average. She has been diagnosed with ADHD by the school and is on aderall to control this. She is in a specialized school program but teacher does'nt support placement as she functions at an average level barring social disfunction. Teacher notes that A targets the special needs kids calls them retards, says they're disgusting and again seems unaware of horrible she sounds.

We do not give A her medication on weekends and we see no difference in behaviours

A year into her stay with us and she continues to lie and steal. It dosent seemed to matter how much we do either way, we've tried restrictions rewards and praise all seem to have no effect. She is never remorseful is never embarrassed when caught and only on the rare occassion is upset when she can't get out of the consequence.

She constantly pits one person against the other tries to intimidate through making false claims(twice now she has had me investigated for abusing her) both times when she was caught in a major lie. When confronted she stated to her Children Aid workers that she was just so sad and just wanted to go home even though she really really likes us. She has done this type of behaviour to her mother, her teachers, and workers and peers.

She's a total control freak if allowed she would and has scheduled appointments, arrange transportation and takes on the role of a 30 year old. She knows where anything and everything is in our home even in areas such as our bedroom she's not supposed to be. She snoops and no place is left unexplored. She only gets caught because she is 11 and often slips up and tells on herself by mistake. For examble if I am looking for something her ego gets the best of her and says its in your night stand.

She needs constant reminders to change clothes, keeps everything(dirty tissues,scrap paper, food wrappers,ect) will not get rid of garbage when asked and becomes extremely angry when I dispose of garbage.

Knows everyone's schedule. Continues to lurk around, eaves drought constantly and is very very good at going unoticed. Just last week my son had several friends over and A was unaware that I had pulled in drive way. It was dark out but lights on so I could see everything from outside. What I observed was just weird and disturbing. A was slinking around the house her body posture was ...well creepy. I watched as she went from room to room then down I guess to spy on son. When she looked out the window and saw my car she went into kitchen and faked working on homework. As I walked in she was calm did'nt even bat an eye(she ran across house and didn't even miss a breath) she said Hello in her sappy charming exaggerated way and ask if I like some tea. When I told her I was standing outside for a while was looking in and was amazed at how much territory she could cover in a short time she was unphased. She pleaded that she did not know what I meant. I was specific and she said I didn't do that I said I saw you I stood and watched..she smirked and said I don't know what your talking about.

This child in the year that she has lived with us has never cried about being in care, never attempted to engage or get emotional/physical support from us. All of our other foster kids eventually bonded with us, playing, teasing, needing hugs, laughed and required comforting. Not this girl...nothing.

The only time I've witnessed her laughing is when I spilt a drink, drop and egg, my husband stubbed his toe and at my panicking when puppy got out and I was afraid she get hit by a car.

To date she is on a 12 month waiting list for counselling, assessments are also on hold. This Sept she will become legal ward of the province and my husband and I will be her "family" but we do not have the authority to direct or initiate any sort of treatment without consent from Children's Aid and they are very rigid about NOT attaching labels to children and they are her legal guardian.

No one has given anymore info that what I have let you all know. No one from the Agency seems convinced that there is anything wrong with child....maybe their right....but they also have never lived with this child and to be totally honest are far more concerned with maintaining a placement then looking deeply into issues. Anyways unlike my neighbours and her peers how can I explain it to the agency Hey this kid is kind of creepy, she's all consuming and has become a dominant force in our home its the world according to A, she's a phony, too charming, she lies, steals and manipulates. She shows no real emotion and doesnt seem to care about others, without sounding like a horrible person. All they see is this sad charming little girl who is struggling with being rejected by her mother...maybe they're right but how come she's never in a year shed a tear. How come she never smiles or laughs or needs people.

The reason for all this is this Sept my husband and I will have to make a major decision. Have her remain in our home for the next 9 yrs and hope with security, structure and caring we will provide an opportunity for this child to blossom or accept the fact that she is beyond our help (as we have come to suspect, either she's a budding Psychopath or a RAD kid and request she be placed with another home so that we can dedicate ourselfs to another child that we could better serve. The sad reality is there will never be a shortage of children to care for.

We are in need of others opinions. Prior to opening our home we honestly felt ALL children were entitled to be cared for, we never thought... what if they don't care.


A's Foster Mom

#10806 - 03/06/11 05:33 AM Re: General Discussion [Re: ABsfostermom]
skybluepaint Offline

Registered: 02/05/11
Posts: 100
She is beyond your help and you cannot blame yourself. All you can do is report her behavior and hope that she may get professional help. The contradiction between child and 30yo seems all too familiar in my experience. Poor forlorn child-like innocense versus condescending adult who knows better than anyone else. Something is wrong. You are right to question it and to report it.

#10807 - 03/06/11 05:52 AM Re: General Discussion [Re: skybluepaint]
ABsfostermom Offline

Registered: 02/24/11
Posts: 3
Thanks so much for your reply

#10817 - 03/06/11 11:29 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: ABsfostermom]
concerned Offline

Registered: 09/26/10
Posts: 47
I agree with the previous response. After reading many comments on this site, seeing the destruction that these people cause, and seeing it first hand in my life, I would say emphatically, move on and help someone who can be helped. Otherwise you all might become helpless.

#10827 - 03/07/11 08:54 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: concerned]
ABsfostermom Offline

Registered: 02/24/11
Posts: 3
Thanks to both of you for your comments. The hardest part about all this is the gut ache both my husband and I are going through because what if were wrong. How cruel to push her away.Its like being on a emotional merry go round.
Is this how everyone feels who has to live with this type of individual. I just wish there was something more concrete.

AB's foster mom

#10832 - 03/08/11 06:03 AM Re: General Discussion [Re: ABsfostermom]
skybluepaint Offline

Registered: 02/05/11
Posts: 100
Yours is a hard decision. She may or may not be a psychopath. She may or may not turn out to be a good human being. The reality is she sounds like a very sexually precocious 11yo, which will only escalate as puberty progresses. No matter how much you try to teach her responsibility or about love, it seems she is mainly seeking attention and her sexuality is the means. You have to ask yourself if you want to put yourself through those years. Do you think you can stop her from pursuing that path? Looking forward, in my humble opinion, it sounds like a nightmare. No matter what you say or do, it may not make much of a difference. I know that is a terrible thing to say, and we all want to believe we can make a difference, but she may just need to figure out things for herself. You have to decide whether you want to be around while she does.

#10835 - 03/08/11 08:17 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: skybluepaint]
Dianne E. Offline


Registered: 11/15/02
Posts: 2789
Loc: United States
Hi ABsfostermom, welcome to the forum. I think your instincts and observations are telling you something is very wrong. Are any of your own children at risk by having her in your home? I hope you get a chance to read in the Family Section from parents/fosters in your exact situation. Years ago a foster mother was planning on leaving the state once the kid finished school due to fear of what might happen.

Video her room and anything you can do to further validate your observations so you can weigh the impact this will have on your own family. There are lots of ways to keep track of what she is up to without being in the room or waiting to hear it from others. Sadly in many cases people don't come forward and tell you the truth of their own experiences. If she has a PC it should be in the living room and there are also ways to track what she is doing. Unless she is a sharp techie a home network or check up on her History file to see what she is up to. There are cheap recorders that start recording when the phone is picked up that could be placed in another room where she wouldn't know where it was. Tread with caution. Think of yourself as a home detective and document what you can, that will help if you have to make the move to have her leave your lives. You will see and hear first hand and give you the affirmation of your decision.

Kids like this have been known to turn on the caretakers and cause a great deal of pain with false claims once they see they can't run the home. They divide and conquer families and create conflict and chaos and no one wins. Your primary family should be the first concern, don't let her rip that apart.


#10837 - 03/09/11 05:46 AM Re: General Discussion [Re: Dianne E.]
skybluepaint Offline

Registered: 02/05/11
Posts: 100
Dianne gives some really good ideas for finding the 'concrete' evidence you are looking for. And I agree that the safety, welless, comfort, and support for your primary family should be your main concern.

#10852 - 03/14/11 02:34 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: ABsfostermom]
Kate Offline

Registered: 11/29/10
Posts: 35
Hi ABsfostermom,

You describe a lot of disturbing behaviors, but one that stands out starkly is the lack of friends. You can't know of course exactly what has transpired between her and various kids she's been introduced to and done things with, but the clear avoidance by all peers is a heavy indicator of something seriously awry. I would not want this girl living with me for 9 more years. I second the motion that you take Diane's advice and gather/assemble evidence of her anti-social behavior. If this girl is a psychopath (and her behaviors sure do fit it) retaining her with you is an invitation to trouble and misery.

aspects of your post that I can relate to are below:

My Psychopath sister had no empathy with others in childhood. She cried occasionally, but it was always and only when something had happened where she didn't get something SHE wanted. And she was sneaky, though not as much as the child you describe. At other kid's houses she wandered into bedrooms. For example, she'd use their upstairs bathroom but be gone an inordinately long time; I'd go up to find out if she was okay, and find her not in the bathroom but in the bedroom poking around. I'd say What are you doing?--c'mon back downstairs! She'd reply, " I'm not doing anything wrong! I just wanted to see what it looked like in here."

The shifting-personas behavior your 11-year-old foster girl displays, I experienced frequently, displayed by my father's 2nd wife, at the time a 59-year-old female psychopath. In fact, as I was reading your post I thought "jeez-louise, age is apparently irrelevant!" [to the manifestation of the disorder.]

My father's 2nd wife proved to be a viciously abusive psychopath.
He married her a year after my mother died; I was 30 and she was never a mother to me so I don't refer to her as step-mother.
(I've written about her in other posts so I won't rewrite those, here.)

She did it when she wanted something, was trying to manipulate people into doing something for her or giving her something she wanted.
She did it when she had been denied something she wanted.
She did it to distract people from a topic they were trying to pursue with her that she didn't want to discuss.
She did it when she was caught out in a lie, when questioned about or being confronted with having told, a falsehood.
And she did it when anyone attempted to question her about her behavior [unwarranted anti-social behaviors ranging from insulting rudeness to aggressive hostility.]

A curious thing about them was that she could go through them, bing-bing-bing, one after another. If one didn't work, switch gears and try another. After she'd been booked and released(for assaulting my Dad), she went to the county prosecutors office and unleashed a rainbow of personas, one after the other, to try to convince them she was innocent (but she didn't go into RAGE mode there)...she ended her performance in Unjustly Accused/Crocodile Tears persona, so "upset" at having been arrested and charged, that she coudln't stand and walk, so the poor thing had to be carried out of the building and driven home by officers. Their office was total chaos for the half-hour she was there. The assistant prosecutor phoned me at home afterwards, with questions about her.

She had a "sexualized Baby-Girl" Act:
She'd press up against my father and stroke his face, or sit on his lap and throw her arms around his neck,
"Is Daddy mad at his widdow girl?...don't be mad Daddy...I wuv you Daddy...I not trying to make you mad."

She had a "sexualized Hip-Chick" Act:
She'd walk up to my father, shove her pelvis against his and say (this and other things like it)
"If you want some of my honey Honey you'd better give me what I want! (wink!)"

She had an "Surprised-Innocent Act"
" What are you saying? I have NO idea what you're talking about! I never said [or did] anything of the kind. Where did you hear that lie?!

She had a "Sly Act"
"Don't think you can fool me,I know a lot more than you think I do."

And she did some sneaky info-collecting on people.(I caught her rifling through my purse once, there was nothing but basic stuff in it, entering the room from behind her I asked her why she was in my purse,--she startled ever so briefly and then lied " Oh, well... I have a headache and we're out of Tylenol and I thought you might have some." --[even if so, why not ASK me?]

She had an "Unjustly Accused act [aka Big-Crocodile-Tears" Act
"Bwaaa-haaa-waaah" (loud crying, whole body shuddering,and trembling to show how wounded she was by someone's false [TRUE!] allegations.
"I don't understand...why you(or they) are mean...I've always been good ...I've never did anything to deserve this persecution.."
> note: being held accountable for her own words and actions, even in polite and gentle ways, she always responded to by saying she was being "unfairly persecuted."

When none of the above ACTS "worked" to get what she wanted, or didn't derail conversations she didn't want to have, or didn't effectively manipulate people into silence, she erupted into ENRAGED MONSTER mode. It started out dead-calm and flat-voiced (no vocal affect)
"Now you've done it. You've MADE...ME...MAD. It's YOUR FAULT. How DARE you! I'll show YOU who's the QUEEN here! Then she'd grab up household items and start flinging them at the wall, and sometimes at the target person, howling - literally - with rage.

Sometimes she used a persona to sort of "fake-express" empathy or sympathy:
Baby: "Oh...ooh feels bad. Lemme give ooh a huggy and make it all better."
Hip-chick: "You should'a flipped that bastard the bird and told him to put it where the sun don't shine."

#11159 - 05/28/11 03:21 PM Re: General Discussion [Re: Mati]
veronique Offline

Registered: 05/28/11
Posts: 14
My mother would go to work when she was younger with urine on her clothes until she was sent home to change. I always thought she smelled like poop. One of my brothers is the same but they could be worse. I think my Mom has learned over the years to be more normal.

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