International Adoption: A Case Study

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As adoption has become an increasingly mainstream option for couples looking to expand their families, international adoption agencies increasingly encourage families to explore Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America for potential adoption matches (Carlson, Hostinar, Mliner, & Gunnar, 2014; van Londen, Juffer, & van Uzendoorn, 2007). Unfortunately, many international adoptees (IAs) struggle with the transition into their new families and cultures; an issue that research suggests can be contributed to severe deprivation in early life (Carlson et al., 2014; van Londen et al. 2007). Researchers and aid agencies have observed that many international orphanages struggle to provide healthy, nurturing environments for institutionalized …show more content…

Attachment Patterns in Post-Institutionalized International Adoptees In their 2007 study, van Londen et al. (2007) examined attachment patterns in post-institutionalized adoptees from China, Taiwan, South Korea, Colombia, and Ethiopia to determine if post-institutionalized adoptee populations experience higher rates of insecure and/or disorganized attachment than non-adoptee (NA) groups. To assess attachment in post-institutionalized adoptees, van Londen et al. (2007) recruited 70 adoptees from the aforementioned nations and their adoptive families via collaboration with three Dutch adoption agencies. Only traditional two-parent families for whom the adopted infant was their first child were accepted into the study (van Londen et al., 2007). Further, all adoptees must have been placed with their adoptive families prior to 12 months of age and must have lived with their adoptive families for a minimum of four months prior to participation in the study (van Londen et al., 2007). To determine the influence of institutionalized care on later attachment and development, van Londen et al. (2007) reviewed the adoptive mothers’ maternal sensitivity towards the infants and assessed the infants’ attachment pattern. To decrease potential biases, all assessments were completed during a series of two videotaped in-home interviews, as the researchers felt participants would behave most naturally in their own environment (van Londen et al., 2007).

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