How Does Being Adopted Affect a Child?

Being adopted is a unique experience for everyone who is involved in it. It can be very confusing for children, as they have to learn what it means to belong to a new family.

Often, adoptees feel a sense of rejection and abandonment when they first find out about their adoption. They may wonder what made their birth parents put them up for adoption, why they abandoned them, what was wrong with them or whether they disliked them.

These feelings can have a lasting effect on an adoptee, as they can cause them to question their identity and their place in the world. This can result in a negative sense of self-worth, which can be particularly difficult for international adoptees who need to adjust to living in a new country.

In addition to feeling rejected, adoptees can also feel a sense of guilt and shame. The guilt or shame they feel can have a negative impact on their self-esteem, as they may doubt themselves and think they are not worthy of love.

Adoptees who are older can also have trouble with their own sense of self and self-image. They may seek to find out more about their genetic history and how they are different from other people, as well as their biological family members.

This is an important part of development, as it can help them to understand themselves better and to develop a positive relationship with their adoptive families. It can also allow them to identify the type of relationship they want to have with their birth parents down the road if they choose to do so.

They can also ask their adoptive families why they were adopted, and how they can be part of a larger family system. This can be a very challenging time for both the child and their adoptive parent, so it is essential that the right support is available at all times.

It is vital to let the child know that they are loved no matter what, and to always tell them how proud you are of them. This can help them to overcome the feelings of loss, shame and guilt that they may be experiencing.

A good therapist can be a huge support in this process, as they are trained to work with adoption-related trauma. A search of therapy directories can help you locate a therapist with experience working with adoptees.

Some of the most common mental health issues for adopted kids include depression and anxiety. This is due to the many traumatic experiences they have had and are still processing. These issues can be treated and cured with proper treatment, including medication and therapy.

Behavioral Issues

These can include violent tantrums and/or sensory self-stimulation in times of excitement or stress, oppositional behavior, aggression and depression. It is also possible that a child may develop problems with their social skills, such as difficulty relating to others or getting along in school.

Despite the difficulties, many adopted children are happy and healthy. They have more advantages and opportunities than non-adopted children, so if you have an adopted child, they should be able to thrive and reach their full potential.