The Psychological Effects of Adoption

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“James and Martha Brown went to Mrs. White’s office the next day and found waiting for them a bouncing baby girl with soft brown eyes and a happy smile. Right away they said, ‘We love this baby already’” (Wasson). As is stated in the classic children’s book, The Chosen Baby, this story serves as a common introductory tool that some adoptive families use to explain to their children the way their family was created. The Chosen Baby shares the absolute joy that parents experience when adopting a child and effectively helps children better understand their family dynamics. Adoptive families are unique in that they choose their children, creating a loving foundation for a nurturing home. Although a “chosen family” would appear to be perfect and without flaw, adoption brings with it psychological affects touching every member of the “adoption triad,” the adoptee, adoptive parents, and birth parents (Eldridge, 79). The adoption process involves many individuals other than just the child. Legally, there are approximately seven million registered adoptions. Additionally, non-recorded adoptions also take place, increasing the number of orphans who are united with new families. Parties directly involved include the adoptive parents, the biological parents, and probable siblings. Later in life, as the adoptive child potentially marries, the effects of their adoption story will more than likely also directly touch the spouse and their children as well. Numerous adoptions in the United States prove that their biological parents do not raise a large percentage of children. Consequently, adoption remains a significant aspect of American culture and social structure (Fulghum, 71). For the reason that innate expectations exist a... ... middle of paper ... ...mily”, unintentionally depicts a perfectly formed family leaving the reader to cope with numerous psychological affects that in reality, astoundingly touch each member of the adoption triad. For the adoptee, essential innate needs may go unnoticed, a lack of trust may develop, and mixed emotions regarding the birth and adoptive families may fester throughout the years. Accordingly, various unintentionally disheartening statements of loved ones often trigger these negative emotions. For some adoptees, the adoption process may include a search for the biological family. Subsequently, many risks and rewards propose a challenge to the adoptee. The ultimate challenge, however, remains in successfully weaving nature and nurture concurrently as well as unifying relationships between the adoptive family, birth family, and the adoptee into a healthy, beautiful braid.
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