Fostering self‐esteem: exploring adult recollections on the influence of foster parents
attachment theory, foster carers, self‐esteem, support
Foster parents are in a unique position to improve the self‐esteem of children in their care, which may be lower than that of their non‐fostered peers. According to Harter's dual‐influence model, both general support or attachment and domain‐specific support contribute to self‐esteem. The current study used this model to explore the ways in which foster parents had influenced the self‐esteem of a sample of five adults with differing foster care experiences. Retrospective interviews were used to gather memories of high self‐esteem from time spent in foster care. A thematic analysis of the interview transcripts supported Harter's model, and provided a number of examples of ways in which foster parents could boost children's self‐esteem. The model was further extended to show the importance of ‘normality’ and inclusion for this sample of fostered adults. Further research on this topic is recommended with a view to widening the scope of foster carer training beyond attachment theory.
Original Publication Citation
Luke, N., & Coyne, S. M. (2008). Fostering self-esteem: Exploring adult recollections on the influence of foster parents. Child and Family Social Work, 4, 402-410.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Luke, Nikki and Coyne, Sarah, "Fostering self‐esteem: exploring adult recollections on the influence of foster parents" (2008). All Faculty Publications. 2359.
Child and Family Social Work
Family, Home, and Social Sciences
© 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd