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How Will Adoption Affect My Baby?

How Will Adoption Affect My Baby? A young pregnant woman looks out a window.When grappling with the difficult decision to create an adoption plan, one of the questions we hear pretty regularly is “How will adoption affect my baby?” Many birth mothers choose adoption in hopes of giving their child a better life. So, it should come as no surprise that these same birth mothers are concerned about how adoption will affect their child’s future mental health.

How Will Adoption Affect My Baby? Exploring Possible Positive and Negative Outcomes of Adoption

Some children will experience negative feelings, while others don’t. But either way, the positive outcomes of adoption tend to outweigh the bad.

Negative Outcomes

  • “Some may feel a sense of abandonment or rejection from their birth family,” says Foster. However, this is often alleviated when the adoptee has a positive relationship with their adoptive parents.
  • “Some children may have issues with self-esteem or identity development,” says Foster. This can, at times, be magnified when adoptees look different than their adoptive families. We discuss how to address some of these issues in our two-part series on transracial adoption.
  1. As adoptees grow, it is natural for them to begin to wonder about their birth parents. However, this may lead to feelings of guilt as adoptees sometimes see this as “betraying their adoptive family and/or that they will hurt their adoptive family by expressing their desire to learn about their birth family,” says Kathryn Patricelli,

Positive Outcomes

According to a report conducted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services…

  1. 85 percent of adopted children were found to be in “very good to excellent health.”
  2. Adopted children were also less likely to live in households below the poverty line.
  3. 68 percent of adoptees are read to every day as young children, and 73 percent were sung to every day.
  4. More than half of all adopted children reported to have “very good or excellent” performance in school, and 85 percent participated in extracurricular activities while in grade school.
  5. Adoptees and their families who join groups and attend events with other adoptive families show more positive emotional and psychological adjustment to adoption.

“There is no parental handbook to ensure the psychological and emotional health of your child,” says Ashley Foster,, and no two adoptions are the same. So, unfortunately, there is no one answer as to how adoption will psychologically affect your child. All you can do as a parent is try to make the best decision for your child’s future.

Considering Adoption And Have More Questions?

Adoption Makes Family is a non-profit (501-C3) licensed adoption agency based in Maryland, founded to meet the needs of birth parents and adoptive parents in a manner that is sensitive, compassionate, and personal. Our experienced adoption counselors are here to answer your questions 24/7.

Call Us Now at (410) 683-2100

If you have any questions, you can contact us by phone at 410-683-2100, by e-mail at or use our online contact form.


  1. Foster, Ashley. “What Psychological and Emotional Effects Can Adopted Children Suffer from?”,
  2. Patricelli, Kathryn. “Long-Term Issues For The Adopted Child.” Mental Help Early Childhood Cognitive Development Language Development Comments,
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