Man becomes foster parent at age 21: “We may not look alike, but it’s a typical family”

RICHMOND, Virginia — Eight years ago a Virginia man stepped up to the plate for children who needed a father. He and his children may not look alike — but family is deeper than skin color.

“When someone calls you dad, and you’re like, ‘who me?!’ I just like taking care of children. Anything I’ve really done that meant anything involves children,” Barry Farmer said.

The 29-year-old is the father of 14-year-old Darrell, 12-year-old Xavier and six-year-old Jeremiah.

He said his decision to become a foster parent came “out of the blue,” eight years ago, when he was just 21.

“I went through the training. The director who was there, she believed I was the perfect fit for the program. I didn’t expect one kid — let alone three,” Farmer said.

Farmer said he feels everyone deserves a family. He admits that at first, they got some stares when they went out together.

“In this day in time, as far as families are concerned, seeing color, or seeing unity and belonging — that’s what I was hoping to accomplish with my family anyway. When I have them now, I can’t see them anywhere else. And it’s a typical family. We may not look alike, but it’s a typical family. I just want them to be someone that I can be proud of and they can be proud of and that’s all it takes,” Farmer said.

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