A non-profit adoptive family support center
Serving families, professionals and educators since 1998

Best Of
 

 

7 Core
Adoptee    |
  BIRTH PARENT

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LOSS
Ruminates about lost child
Initial loss merges with other life events
Leads to social isolation
Changes in body and self image
Relationship losses

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REJECTION
Rejects self as irresponsible and unworthy because she permitted the adoption
Turns these feelings against self as deserving of rejection
Comes to expect and cause rejection

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GUILT / SHAME
Party to guilty secret
Shame and guilt for placing child
Feeling of being judged by others
Double bind: Not okay to keep child—not okay to place him

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GRIEF
Grief acceptable for only a short period
Grief may be delayed 10 or 15 years
Lacks rituals for mourning
Sense of shame blocks grief work

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IDENTITY
Child as part of identity goes on without knowledge
Diminished sense of self and self-worth
May interfere with future parental desires

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INTIMACY & RELATIONSHIPS
Difficulty resolving issues with other birth parent may interfere with future relationships
Intimacy may equate with loss

CONTROL / GAINS
Relinquishment seen as an out-of-control, disjunctive event
Interrupts drive for self-actualization

   

 


 

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