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Josh did not trust anyone. He was moved from foster home to foster home, where he always succeeded in being evicted in the end. But once this plan failed. When he met an adult who never gave up on him.

Image: Dreamstime (with licence)

This is what Josh Shipp says in a video that has been viewed over 34 million times on Facebook.


Did not trust anyone

In the video, Josh talks about an extremely upsetting childhood. He tells:

I tried to take my own life with a box of pills. The truth is that I did not trust anyone, and when I look back, I think: How could I?

He was abandoned by his own parents, raped by another foster child in foster care, and subjected to extensive bullying. And it all led to him simply not daring to trust anyone in this world. 

As a child, he was moved from one foster home to another. Josh says:

You meet people who were literally complete strangers to you just 10 minutes ago. But now they are supposed to be your own mother and father.


New foster home - new opportunity to be evicted

Here he tells about the meeting with Rodney, who was to be the tribe in another of Josh's foster homes. Rodney was a rather full-bodied man. Josh talks about the first meeting:

I could not help but notice that his body shape resembled a "b", and I thought to myself that this maybe could be something that I could use later on to be thrown out of this home; like a vulnerability that could be exploited. 

Josh says that he met his new foster home with this very attitude: To be thrown out of there as soon as possible. Therefore, he met his new family with a rude demeanor. He was ungrateful, downright naughty, and he literaly set things on fire. 


One last try 

Three years later, Josh had to admit that Rodney was not actually going to throw him out. Therefore, Josh stepped up the fight. He went and did something really stupid, which led to him being imprisoned.

From here he called his foster father and told him what had happened. 

I'll come and pay the bail and get you out, Rodney replied. But not until tomorrow. 

And so it was. Back home, his stepfather asked for a conversation with Josh, just as young Josh had feared. Now the time has come, he thought. - So now I'll be thrown out again. 


The turning point

But this is how the conversation went:

Son, Rodney said. You can continue to create problems, to try to create chaos, to push us away from you. You can keep trying to get us to kick you out of here, but you have to get one thing in to your head:

We do not see you as a problem. We see you as an opportunity.

At that moment, all my doubts came to light, says Josh, who thought: What an idiotic thing to say to a 17-year-old child. 

But at the same time, I was overwhelmed by the reality that this person actually meant it. 

He did not see me as I was on the surface: the disobedient and impossible child. He saw who I could become. This was truly the turning point in my life. 


Here you can watch the video


The big difference

- Statistically, I should have been dead, in prison, or homeless, Josh continues.

But because of one adult who cared, he did not become part of that statistic.

He says:

Every child who ends up coping has had at least one stable and committed relationship with a supportive adult. 


An allotted time to influence

Josh points to a jar of 936 marbles. Each of these marbles represents one week - from the child is born until he or she turns 18 years old. So if you look at a 9-year-old, you only have 468 marbles - or weeks - left. If you have a 16-year-old, you only have 104 marbles - or weeks - left. 

This is the time you have left to influence this child, before they turn 18 and start making critical decisions in life without your influence.

The difference between the statistics and a success story is you, Josh Shipp concludes in his incredibly important story.



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