Adrien McLemore is described in the headline as ‘an accidental dad,” but really, his parental role is anything but an accident. He spent a lot of time in foster care as a child and so knew what was at stake when he was 22 and his sister got in trouble. Her kids–then 3 and one–were taken into state custody. They were headed for foster care. Except that he stepped up and said he’d take them. They’ve lived with him since then–about a year and a half.
Like the man in the earlier post, he doesn’t call himself a father. Of course, we do have a word for what he is–“uncle”–and he has a legal status, too–foster parent. But from my point of view, he looks an awful lot like a parent. Or like a father. Perhaps most importantly, he’s clearly in it for the long haul.
“The biggest thing children need, in addition to unconditional love, is a comfortable, safe environment, a sense of stability and permanence,” McLemore says, with all the clarity of someone who did not have these things. “Children need to know their siblings and spend time with them, not just in weekly visits with a case worker, but at picnics and in parks and with family members like aunts and uncles and grandparents.”
He seems like a fine man to profile on Father’s Day.