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An average foster baby will live in three different homes before his first birthday. On average, a child will remain in foster care for 26.6 months.

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Hardwork and Heartbreak

by: Josette Alvarado
Posted (January 8, 2004)

I am a mother of 4 and became involved with CPS when my children were ages 10, 8, 3, and 5 months. I was a single mother and was addicted to methamphetamine.

CPS became involved in my life when my youngest daughter was born and I tested positive for methamphetamine but my daughter didn't.

I went through the court process and completed most of what they asked of me. I went to outpatient substance abuse classes and was still doing drugs. Not thinking all this stuff was real, my outpatient counselor had given me a drug test and it came back positive.

To make a long story short my children were taken by CPS.

Children Come Home

During the course of this court process I did what the court asked of me. My 5-year-old was returned while I was in a residential program and my 5-month-old was also returned. I had only consecutive over-night visits with her.

I thought I could get over on the system and had no intentions of quitting. I actually made sure that I asked my caseworker if they removed my youngest again, would she be returned to me and she told me that she would.

They took my 5-month-old again but let me keep my 5-year-old. The whole time my two oldest were being flopped between various foster homes having bad experiences not being fed, being abused by foster parents kids, and things of that sort.


I was told to go back to residential program again. This time I was honest with myself and chose to be clean for my children and myself.

I had to be clean for myself and then for them. Because without me being clean my children meant nothing to me and that was not fair to them. I went into the program willing to quit drugs. As of today I have been clean for 2 years and 2 months.

Case Closed

My 2 oldest children were returned to me and my cases with the 3 oldest were closed. They kept my case opened with the youngest and had intentions the whole time to adopt her out.

I fought the whole time and had only 2 visits per month for an hour at McDonalds with the foster mother supervising my visits. I had a few set backs during the course of my fight but I did not relapse.

An adoption worker was assigned to my case and believe it or not she was my CPS worker when my case was first opened.

So of course she said off the record that she has seen a tremendous turn around in my life. I went to court on December 30, 2003 to decide what the fate of my daughter (who is now 3-years-old) would be.

Broken Bonds

According to the judge and the adoption worker they say my daughter does not know my other children or myself. They say she does not have a bond with us and it would be devastating for her to be removed from this foster family because this is the only family she knows.


They have not given her a chance to bond and be part of our family.

So the judge's decision was to terminate my parental rights.

  • What can I do from here?
  • Can I have some kind of open adoption so I can see her?
  • Would that be wrong of me to want to keep contact with her?
  • Should I just let her be?
  • Please help me!

Thanks for listening to my story.

Josette Alvarado