Adoption affects all triad members (adoptees, birth parents, and adoptive parents) and other birth and family members throughout life. The resources in this section provide information on the lifelong impact of adoption, focusing on several common themes.
The Hidden Impact of Adoption (PDF - 275 KB)
Explains the emotional difficulties adoptees may experience and highlights the role of a mental health professional in helping adoptees address conscious and unconscious feelings of loss, shame, and abandonment.
Factsheets for Families
Download (PDF - 314KB)
The Invisible Realities of Adoption
Adoptive and Foster Family Coalition of New York (2016)
Explains that for adoptions to be successful, children and families must work through the trauma they may experience as part of the adoption process and keep the focus on family to avoid a lifetime of negative feelings of abandonment. This article also explains the nonverbal concept of inducement.
Lifelong Issues in Adoption
Explains seven characteristics that affect children who are adopted, adoptive parents, and birth parents throughout the lifespan.
Understanding Ambiguous Loss (PDF - 47 KB)
Defines ambiguous loss and examines the reasons why children may experience unresolved grief following adoption and suggests ways that parents can help children as they process the adoption.