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in Foster Care for 27 Days

Synopsis of film

KATE is a mature and verbal child. Her stay with the Robertsons becomes extended to 27 days because of complications in the birth.  Well prepared and supported throughout, Kate copes well for almost a week then gradually reveals the stress she is under - with lowered frustration tolerance and increasing disappointment in her absent parents.

Father visits regularly, but Kate becomes more and more cool towards him.  When taken to see her mother in hospital, she is polite but distant.  In play with a family of dolls she shows vividly the conflict of feeling about her absent parents.  She needs more and more creature comforts - bottles and sweets.  She becomes increasingly secure in the foster home, and attached to her foster mother who seeks throughout to keep alive a positive image of the mother.  On reunion Kate returns to her mother with pleasure, and keeps a friendly relationship to the foster mother.

Because Kate was made familiar with the foster family before separation, and her experience of an affectionate caring person maintained by the foster mother, she was never overwhelmed by anxiety.  All Kate's resources were therefore available to her to meet the stressful experience of coping without mother.