Typical Behaviors of Children Adopted Internationally

What are some behaviors that are typical of children adopted internationally? How can parents help their children overcome these behaviors. We talked with Leah Strom, a social worker who has worked in the Child Welfare community for nearly 20 years. She is the Director of Social Work for International and Domestic adoption at Children’s Home Society & LSS of Minnesota.

Hit the Highlights
  1. What do we mean when we say that international adoption is largely a special needs adoption program now?
  2. What are the general characteristics and needs of children awaiting international adoption?
  3. What are some of the factors that influence the behaviors of children adopted from abroad?
    • Institutionalization (multiple caregivers, neglect, removal from birth family)
    • Abuse
    • Neglect (lack of stimulation)
    • Maternal substance abuse
    • Lack of education
    • Child of leaving familiar ties and surroundings
  4. What are some of the expected behaviors that are common in children adopted internationally?
    • Impact of institutionalization
    • Attachment issues
    • Post-traumatic stress
    • Impacts of prenatal substance abuse
    • Impacts of neglect
    • Impacts of abuse
    • Impact of lack of education
    • Impact of child leaving familiar ties and surroundings
  5. What type of parenting is effective at helping kids adopted internationally adjust?
  6. What can adoption professionals do to help families and children adapt post-adoption?

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Music credit: Michael Ashworth

Photo credit: Siritas Keawnet from Pexels