Barry Farmer grew up in foster care and knows what displacement actually feels like. He is currently 34 years old. His grandmother Cora took care of him when he was 5 years old when his own parents were unable to do so. It was at his grandmother’s that he finally found the love he needed. He was inspired by her kindness and decided to open his house to children under the foster care system. He was only 20 when he became a foster father. Presently, he is raising his 3 sons as a single parent.
Barry Farmer’s First Experience With Fostering
Barry Farmer is the radio host of the show “Barry Farmer Morning Show”. This was where he came in contact with his first placement, a year after he received his foster parenting license. The teen who was only 16 years old stayed with Barry for 6 months and Barry received another call after 2 months.
“They asked if I want to try another teenager or do I want to go with a 7-year-old,” Barry Farmer recalled. “[I thought] ‘Why don’t we go with the 7-year-old and see how it is going to go?’ It seemed like I could be a little more active and take him places.” Farmer had no knowledge about the kid, Jackson, but he chose to meet up with him.
“This child, in my head, is Black,” Barry recalls. “When I got there, he was just the whitest white child that I ever worked with.” He continues, “I thought, ‘Wow, this is going to be interesting.’ Because I have no clue what I am doing.”
The two kids were physically different but bonded immediately. Farmer recalled how Jackson was caring and loving and realized that all he needed was a family.
“He just wanted some hugs and to call me Dad.”
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The Love Between Jackson And Barry Farmer Was Unmatched
The kid, Jackson, was to be adopted by another family but he missed Farmer when he left his home. This was when he finally decided to adopt Jackson. Farmer, who was 22 at that time, stated “You’re responsible for somebody else’s life on purpose,” he says. “Going from true strangers, we built a bond in six months where we felt comfortable enough to be father and son.”
Farmer thought about extending his family in 2011, right after Jackson’s adoption. He was going back home from the courthouse when Jackson said, ‘So am I going to have a brother?’ Farmer revealed that “Once I was taking care of him, he did need a sibling.”
It was 2013 when Barry Farmer adopted Xavier, 11. Just after a year, he welcomed Jeremiah into his home, who was only 4 years old. Farmer officially adopted him in 2016.
The kids have grown up now: Jackson is now 19, Xavier is 17, and Jeremiah is 11.
Farmer’s family loves to go out for road trips to the East Coast and look for new places.
“That really brought us all together. Every time we did it, they got to meet some of my extended family along the way.”
Barry Farmer Opens Up About The Pleasures Of Parenting
Barry Farmer feels that it was quite rewarding for him to be a foster parent.
“Fatherhood has been everything I imagine it to be because I’m the father I wish I had growing up,” he says. “I’m involved, I’m there when my boys go to sleep and when they wake up.” The proud foster dad adds, “I’m their biggest cheerleader when helping them achieve their goals. I try not to miss a beat in their lives. I take the responsibility of being their father very seriously and never for granted.”
He encouraged people to consider adoption or even act as foster parents to these kids, who are usually overlooked. These children need a beautiful home and closure on their difficult past.
“There is no need to be afraid of older children in America waiting for their forever homes. They need your understanding, your compassion, and your guidance.”
Image credit: Instagram/@iambarryfarmer