All she wants are her foster parents

All she wants are her foster parents

One child. Two sets of parents.

And because of a feud that has started among the adults, the child is now stuck in a foster home.

We will call the 12-year-old Mary. The real names of Mary and her four parents have been changed to protect her identity.

Given away

When she was still a baby, Mary was given away to her aunt and was raised knowing that she has four parents.

But things turned ugly last year when Mary's biological and foster parents began accusing each other of bad parenting and child abuse.

For the past eight months, she has been in a children's home under a care and protection order by the Ministry of Social and Family Development pending the conclusion of police investigations into the abuses.

So distressed was she that she sneaked handwritten letters through classmates to her foster parents, Mr and Mrs A.

Because of the spat, her biological parents, Mr and Mrs B, forbade her from meeting her foster parents.

Mary was supposed to be studying for her PSLE but was so upset that she took to writing pleading letters, asking Mrs A to find a way out.

In one letter, she wrote: "Help me! Please get me out of here!"

Another read: "I don't want to live with anyone else besides you."

There are another five more handwritten letters, all pleading for Mr and Mrs A to "save her" from the children's home.

"Her words broke our hearts," Mrs A tells The New Paper on Sunday in a teary interview from her Yishun flat.

Mrs A recounts that Mary's mother asked her to look after the child. "She said she would not have time to look after the child as she had to work to earn money as a cashier in a club."

So, Mrs A leapt at the opportunity as the couple was childless at that time and had been trying unsuccessfully for a baby, she says.

There was no paperwork signed to formalise the handing over of the baby, says Mrs A.

"All she told me was, 'I want you to look after my child'." And for 11 years, Mr and Mrs A did just that.

Mrs A, a housewife, and Mr A, a sales promoter who makes $4,000 each month, raised Mary as if she were their own.

They described Mary as a cheerful and smart child.

Says Mr A: "We love her dearly and we have always considered her as our daughter, even after we had our own children."

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