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‘He Said He Didn’t Know How To Boil Water’: Foster Parent Shares What It’s Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds
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Parenting, People2 years ago

‘He Said He Didn’t Know How To Boil Water’: Foster Parent Shares What It’s Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

The memories we associate with food are strong and can follow us for as long as we live. Tasting something that we ate during a certain period of our lives can bring back what we were feeling then, whether those memories are fond, or painful. A mom’s post about one of these darker memories that her son, who she adopted through foster care, shared with her, has gone viral as an example of how surviving neglect affects children and as a reminder for foster parents to listen and make space for their kids’ experiences.

Aubren Dudley, an adoptive mother of 5 siblings, wrote in a Facebook post that she noticed the 9-year-old about to eat something that appeared strange and unappetizing to her: a block of dry ramen noodles straight out of the packet. She was about to stop him, but he explained that he wanted to eat it that way since he had developed a taste for it in his old home. When she opened up and listened to his explanation, it made her more conscious of what her kids had been through before they came to her.

Aubren Dudley posted her son’s story along with a picture of the meal

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

Image credits: aubren00

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

In the United States, nearly a third of children in foster care, most of them 5 years old or younger, were removed from their parents because of neglect related to parental drug use. That figure has increased due to the opioid and methamphetamine epidemics, and an overall increase in the amount of children entering foster care in the last decade could possibly be related as well.

In Dudley’s post, she highlights the importance of not trying to erase this experience of neglect or minimize its relevance, but letting her kids share it at their own pace and appreciating their resilience that got them to where they are now.

Other people who have adopted children, or were adopted themselves, thanked her for sharing the story and for her call to be empathetic when kids open up about traumatic experiences.

People commended both Dudley and her son for the story

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

'He Said He Didn't Know How To Boil Water': Foster Parent Shares What It's Like To Raise Children From Hard Backgrounds

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Monty Glue
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

My mother died when I was 6 and finding affordable childcare in the 1960s was hard for my father. He went to work and the house had no adults until he returned at night. I remember coming home for lunch when I was in the 2nd grade and my younger sister was in kindergarten. The only thing I could make for us was cinnamon toast. Looking back I still feel lucky compared to the deprived children that suffer today. But this was a vivid reminder of my dark childhood and the scars I carry to this day.

Clavelle
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

I'm so sorry you lost your mom at such a young age. It sounds like your sister was lucky to have someone looking after her.🙂

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kurisutofu
Community Member
2 years ago

Actually, instant ramens are quite good like that! I used to eat them that way. Ramen are already cooked so they're not uncooked, just dried.

Lea Springstead
Community Member
2 years ago

I used to eat Ramen like that too, I liked it a lot actually. I'd sprinkle a little water on it so the spices would stick then crunch away.

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Stéphanie Nadon
Community Member
2 years ago

This story is so sad. Its remembering me how I had to be strong when I was living with my dad. Yes its survival mode and you cant just press "Pause" there is no stop. When I was 15years old my dad kicked me from the house. This was the best thing that could happened to me (even if it was a rough time) I always say I started living at 15 now.

Seabeast
Community Member
2 years ago

I think that kids who get kicked out before they're legally old enough to support themselves with full time work should be able to sue their parents for back child support years later.

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Monty Glue
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

My mother died when I was 6 and finding affordable childcare in the 1960s was hard for my father. He went to work and the house had no adults until he returned at night. I remember coming home for lunch when I was in the 2nd grade and my younger sister was in kindergarten. The only thing I could make for us was cinnamon toast. Looking back I still feel lucky compared to the deprived children that suffer today. But this was a vivid reminder of my dark childhood and the scars I carry to this day.

Clavelle
Community Member
2 years ago (edited)

I'm so sorry you lost your mom at such a young age. It sounds like your sister was lucky to have someone looking after her.🙂

Load More Replies...
kurisutofu
Community Member
2 years ago

Actually, instant ramens are quite good like that! I used to eat them that way. Ramen are already cooked so they're not uncooked, just dried.

Lea Springstead
Community Member
2 years ago

I used to eat Ramen like that too, I liked it a lot actually. I'd sprinkle a little water on it so the spices would stick then crunch away.

Load More Replies...
Stéphanie Nadon
Community Member
2 years ago

This story is so sad. Its remembering me how I had to be strong when I was living with my dad. Yes its survival mode and you cant just press "Pause" there is no stop. When I was 15years old my dad kicked me from the house. This was the best thing that could happened to me (even if it was a rough time) I always say I started living at 15 now.

Seabeast
Community Member
2 years ago

I think that kids who get kicked out before they're legally old enough to support themselves with full time work should be able to sue their parents for back child support years later.

Load More Replies...
Load More Comments
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