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An Adlerian Perspective on Open Adoption: Choices and Implications for the Adoption Triad
This study examines research on the effects of adoption and open adoption on adopted
children, adoptive parents, and birth parents. Definitional issues of open adoption are
examined, and a brief history is presented. The divergent opinions and research outcomes
on the benefits, disadvantages, and implications of open adoption are analyzed.
Application to the work of adoption counselors, social workers, and others who facilitate
adoptions is discussed. Conditions for successful open adoptions are identified, as well as
attitudes and beliefs important for successful open adoption relationships. Education,
preparation, and counseling were found to assist in the success of open adoptions.
Research on the outcomes of open adoption for adopted children is inconclusive. The
findings suggest that while open adoption can be beneficial for adoptive parents and birth
parents, both open and confidential adoptions should be available to serve the specific
needs of the individuals involved.
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