The Fostering Team

Mental health and fostering image

Can I foster if I have a mental health condition?

About 1 in 4 people experience some form of mental health in their lives – whether that’s stress, anxiety, mild depression or something more long-lasting like bi-polar disorder.

We look at every application on an individual basis so, even if you have a long-standing mental health condition, it’s still possible to become a foster carer with us and we welcome your application.

Many of the young people we support have also experienced mental health issues. Having similar experiences often helps our carers develop higher degrees of understanding and empathy with the young people they care for.

Application Process

Going through the assessment there are two main questions that we ask regarding your mental health:

  • Does it affect your ability to carry out the role of a foster parent and look after a vulnerable child in any way?
  • How will the stresses and challenges of fostering impact on your own wellbeing and how will you manage any feelings of stress?

As well as having discussions with you, you will also, as part of the usual assessment process have a medical with your GP.  We take into consideration things such as how long you have lived with your condition, type of condition and severity and any medications.

We take into account each individual circumstance and we will be fair and honest about any decisions we might make.

Can you foster if I am on antidepressants?

There’s no reason why being on antidepressants would prevent you from becoming a foster parent if you’re able to provide a child with a stable and predictable family environment.

If you’ve only recently started using antidepressants, we may recommend that you focus on your own mental health and reaching emotional stability before we take you through the process to become a foster parent.

In conclusion, having a mental health shouldn’t deter you from applying to foster – so if you are interested in fostering, please give us a call. If you have any questions about fostering with mental health issues, do not hesitate to contact us and our helpful team will do their best to answer any questions you might have.

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