Ten things I've learnt about surviving being a foster carer - by Debbie Douglas

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In this blog, Debbie Douglas, an experienced foster carer (and star of The Only Way Is Essex), shares ten thoughts on how she has 'survived' being a foster carer.

We'd love to hear your thoughts too. Email your list to media@fostering.net

  1. Warmth and kindness always shines through. Smile. Because those who don't smile back need it the most.
  2. Every single child that comes into your home will be scared (wouldn't you be?). Their fear will empty out in a million different ways.
  3. No matter what journey they have travelled children will always love their family. Home is home.
  4. Never go to bed on an argument. In your darkest moments tomorrow is another day.
  5. Words are cheap, actions are powerful. Show them you love them unconditionally...the simplest of gestures speak thousands of words.
  6. There are always reasons for behaviours. It is about you finding them.
  7. You will be many things...a carer...a nurse...a friend...a coach...a teacher...a therapist...a night whisperer. Be prepared to wear many hats.
  8. Educate yourself beyond every comfort zone you can imagine, because in order to wear all these hats education is powerful.
  9. Never judge...never think you hold the answers. Sometimes there aren't any. It's called acceptance.
  10. Love truly conquers all.