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The Developmental Stages Of Childhood

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The developmental stages of childhood are recognizable – and the number of stages and emotional milestones between birth and the age of two is incredible. The actual timeline will vary between infants, but the path is virtually the same. Major life changes will often result in noticeable disruptions or deviations or reversals of the development stages of the infant experiencing the change. One such “major life change” is adoption.

Newly adopted infants will often need time to adjust to their new situation. Remember that the change they have experienced meant a loss of everything familiar to them: faces, sights, sounds, smells, routines, etc. Babies are adaptable, but you can ease their transition.

Don’t become immediately frustrated if your adopted 6 month old baby’s records note that she has been sleeping through the night for a few months without disruption and she wakes up crying loudly for several minutes every few hours throughout the night when you bring her home. Don’t be overwhelmed if your 18 month old seems to want to be held every minute of every day and has no interest in playing. You already know what’s going on…they need a little bit of time to adjust to their new situation.

What Can Adoptive Parents Do to Ease the Transition and Create a Lasting Bond?

Newborns (birth to five months old) should be kept close to you. Respond to their needs consistently (eating, drinking, diaper changes, etc.) If possible, don’t wash the outfit they came home in
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