Home Contact About
Adopting Family Resources

Adopting Families - Child DevelopmentAdopting Families - Child Development

Child Development

Understanding some of the unique challenges your adopted child will face as they grow up can help you be a more effective parent.

Adoption and the Stages of Development

As an adoptive parent you will, at several points, probably find yourself facing developmental issues and concerns that are different than those faced when a child has been biologically born into the family.

Learning about the typical developmental stages that all children go through and what you may be able to expect at each stage is important for every parent. When your child has been adopted there are additional considerations since all children who have been adopted as infants or when they are older are affected by their adoption. The issues that are affected include separation, loss, trust, anger, grief, and identity.  The more you can understand your child's behavior the more likely it is that you can be supportive and help your child to grow in a positive direction.

To help you understand the important developmental stages and issues, rather than reproducing what has already been done, we are referring you to a good article entitled Adoption and the Stages of Development by the Child Welfare Information Gateway. This article covers the following topics: 1) What to expect at different ages; 2) The facts of life: where do I come from and how did I get here; 3) Children who are adopted when they are older or who are of a different race; 4) Emotional impact of adoption; and 5) Searching for birth parents.

Remember that the stages of development and developmental patterns of growth may vary significantly from one child to the next. Some children progress more quickly from one stage to another while others may be substantially delayed in entering and moving through new stages.

Help for Adopting Families by State

 Alabama  Montana
 Alaska  Nebraska
 Arizona  Nevada
 Arkansas  New Hampshire
 California  New Jersey
 Colorado  New Mexico
 Connecticut  New York
 Delaware  North Carolina
 Florida  North Dakota
 Georgia  Ohio
 Hawaii  Oklahoma
 Idaho  Oregon
 Illinois  Pennsylvania
 Indiana  Rhode Island
 Iowa  South Carolina
 Kansas  South Dakota
 Kentucky  Tennessee
 Louisiana  Texas
 Maine  Utah
 Maryland  Vermont
 Massachusetts  Virginia
 Michigan  Washington
 Minnesota  West Virginia
 Mississippi  Wisconsin
 Missouri  Wyoming
 More Adoption Help
 Pregnancy  Placing a child for adoption
 Parenting  Adopting a child

Adopting Families - Child DevelopmentAdopting Families - Child Development