The Impact of Adoption on Members of the Triad

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The controversies in adoption have extended across a spectrum of policy and practice issues, and although the issues have become clear, resolution has not been achieved nor has consensus developed regarding a framework on which to improve the quality of adoption policy and practice. This book is the third in a series to use an ethics-based framework for analyzing and resolving these complex challenges in adoption while avoiding the divisiveness that has heretofore impeded their resolution. This book, presented in four parts, focuses on the many ways that adoption may affect each member of the adoption triad. Part 1 presents information on the historical context of adoption in the United States, from colonial times through the current day. Part 2 examines the impact of adoption on the adopted person and considers children's and adolescents' adjustment and well-being, adolescents' identity formation, adult adoptees' access to information, and adoptees' searches and reunions with biological parents. Part 3 considers the impact of adoption on birth parents, including the individual's sense of personal integrity and well-being related to open adoption practices and involuntary termination of parental rights. Part 4 examines the impact of adoption on prospective adoptive parents, adoptive parents, and adoptive families, focusing on the psychological and social processes involved in becoming adoptive parents, the processes involved in being approved to parent, and issues related to adoptive parents' right to adopt and decisions to adopt particular children. (Contains 394 references.) (KB)

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