What’s the need of discussing attachment in adopted children? Well, that is because all adopted children go through various circumstances in the first few years of their lives that can lead to many complications associated with their development. Adopted children face difficulties that other children rarely face.
This can cause children to behave in a way that is worrying for their adoptive parents. This can sometimes lead to behaviors of over-dependence on adoptive parents. Conversely, it can cause the child to try to distance himself/herself emotionally from the latter… Why? Read on to find out!
What are the variables influencing attachment in adopted children?
In certain situations, adopted children go through situations, not always easy or age-appropriate, before going to live with their new families. Many of those situations play a vital role in developing a sense of attachment in children concerning their new family. First, it is more difficult for these children to have a secure attachment bond with their adoptive parents if they have had experiences of abuse and/or neglect in the family they were born in, an orphanage or foster family.
In the initial years, children need adults for support and closeness. If adults neglect them, then it will give rise to a sense of insecurity in children towards adults, which will influence their future relationships.
Something similar happens when children are institutionalized for a long time. It is not that easy to mistreat children in orphanages due to strict government policies, yet there are emotional and psychological setbacks that could happen to their mentality. Such things have a huge impact on children and their ability to develop an attachment with their adopted parents.
Despite being treated well physically, there is usually only one educator for many children in orphanages, which makes it difficult to provide them with the emotional support they need. This is why we can observe differences in the development of attachment in children adopted in the first months of life compared to those adopted later.
What characteristics of parents promote adequate attachment?
These early experiences are beyond the control of the adoptive parents. Therefore, it is worth considering whether parents can do anything to help their children develop well emotionally and socially. Of course, the development of attachment is largely influenced by the behaviors and personalities of both parents, i.e., father and mother.
Here are the things that encourage a secure attachment in adopted children:
1. Stress tolerance
2. Emotional stability
3. Appropriate expression of affection
In other words, adoptive parents must act mature and develop their style of secure attachment, which they can teach to their adopted children in the most suitable ways.
Parents need to have sufficient resources to face adversities and adaptively regulate negative emotions, being able to ask for help if they feel the need. They should also never feel that asking for help makes them bad parents or affects their self-esteem. Through this, they will be able to show their children how important it is to manage emotions.
This empathy will place them in a privileged position, as they will be able to connect their children to their origin. At the same time, they promote a more realistic vision of the reasons for their adoption. Something very important, because many children in this situation feel guilty and underestimated because they have been abandoned. All of this is essential for them to develop a secure attachment.
Are you interested in adopting? Connected by Love Adoptions can help!