Family characteristics and dynamics among families receiving postadoption services
Postadoption services are an expanding service sector. This study determined the characteristics of families and children using a postadoption services program in New England. On average, children were 11 years of age at case opening and had been adopted for 6 years. Most had a history of maltreatment (57%), were adopted domestically (67%), and lived in adoptive families with married parents (82%). Almost all had received at least 1 other postadoption service (90%) and many (47%) had received 4 or more. Families’ greatest concerns were child development and family relationships, with fewer concerns about culture, race, or birth parents. Although managing their children’s behavior was a concern, families reported feeling effective and expressed considerable closeness to their child.