Adoption’s Impact on Adopted Children
What kind of impact will adoption have on my child? Will my child resent me for the decision that I have made? Will my child be traumatized from my decision to place him or her for adoption? How do children feel when adopted? How does adoption affect a child? How do the personalities of adopted children affect their view on their adoption? Are there advantages of adopted children?
These questions are normal to have for any birth mother. Even adoptive parents wonder the same things. Having these questions regarding an adopted child shows that the individual wondering these things loves that child dearly. It would be more uncommon not to be asking such questions.
The answers depend on multiple factors. There are so many complexities to the psyche of a child, that there is no simple answer. However, studies have been conducted that prove adopted children are just as well-adapted to life as other children, if not more well-adapted.
Factors that Determine Adjustment to Being Adopted
There are many factors that affect a child’s ability to adapt to life and situations. Regardless of the situation, children learn what they are taught. Growing up in a healthy household where they are shown love and security will boost their self-esteem and self-worth. Growing up in a toxic environment will affect a child’s ability to feel safe and secure. Different personalities adjust differently to different situations. Teaching a child about emotional and mental health will only positively impact them. Educating children on where they came from and giving them courage to face life will only aid them in their upbringing. While every child may be different, the needs remain the same: safety and security.
Adoption is Love
Women who chose to voluntarily terminate their parental rights and place a child up for adoption typically make the decision out of love for their child. Once the child has been placed with his or her adoptive family, it becomes the responsibility of the adoptive parents to make sure that they convey and re-enforce this for the child. In an open adoption, it remains important that a birth mother tells her child that they are ever so loved. Encouragement, love, education, safety, security, etc.… these are all aspects that affect a child’s life.
In My Experience
My son is very happy, well-mannered, positive, loving, and incredibly blessed. His parents are open with him about where he came from, how loved he is, and they encourage him to have a relationship with me, his birth mother. You see, I made the decision for adoption out of love. I chose to have an open adoption because I wanted to make sure my son knew the truth about where he came from and that he can have all his questions answered. I don’t want to see him struggle with his identity or why he was gifted to me, then chosen by his parents. My son’s parents and I firmly believe in teaching love to that little boy, and making sure that he feels wanted, safe, and secure.
Some Encouraging Statistics about the Advantages of Adoption for the Child
- 85 percent of adopted children are in excellent or very good health, and adopted children are more likely to have health insurance than children in the general population. Adopted children are also less likely to live in households below the poverty threshold.
- 97 percent of adopted children ages 5 and older know they were adopted.
- More than 90 percent of adopted children age 5 and older have positive feelings about their adoption. According to Considering Adoption, “because today’s adoptions are more open than ever before and allow birth mothers more control throughout the process, most adopted children are now raised to understand their birth parents’ unconditional love and selfless choice. As a result, adoptees tend to think highly of the courageous people who gave them a chance at a better life.”
- A study about being adopted reported that adopted children had greater health, more one-on-one attention from a parent and were more involved in extracurricular activities. Research shows that adopted children grow up as well-adjusted as their peers, especially when they have continued healthy contact with their birth parents.
No matter what your situation regarding your adoption decision, be encouraged! Your child is loved and you have chosen his or her parents. Adoptive parents and birth parents can guide the child to become healthy, happy, and whole. As a team, the child can be taught that adoption is normal, and makes them rather special.
Need to talk to someone? Call 1-800-ADOPTION if you need an encouraging word.
And, as always, remember that you are not alone.