Foster and Adoption Counseling
Are you feeling so many emotions and not knowing what steps to take? Is the process going smoothly, or is it taking longer than expected? Maybe it did not go through, leaving you with adoption and/or foster care loss? Whether it’s positive or negative, we are here to help give you the support you need to move forward with healing. Deciding what is important to you is your first parenting decision and will shape your entire experience.
Adoption and Foster Care counseling is where a member or several members of the triad works with a licensed professional to discuss and heal from adoption-related or foster care issues. Not all individuals or other members of the triad will need or desire therapy, but for those who do, it can be beneficial.
What does Adoption and Foster Care Counseling look like?
Counseling is generally recommended for families seeking to foster or adopt a child. In counseling, a family can prepare for any issues that might arise and learn how to cope with a child’s particular or special needs, including any behavioral or health issues.
Counseling can be used to treat a wide variety of concerns related to adoption and foster care. Some ways therapy may help people cope with adoption or foster care include:
- Exploring one’s identity
- Addressing behavioral disorders in adopted or foster children
- Processing trauma, post traumatic stress (PTSD), or abuse
- Telling a child they are adopted. (not keeping it a secret) Adoptive parents may be able to help by providing children with as much information as possible and by answering any questions a child might have about their adoption.
- Working through anxiety, depression, addiction, and any mental health issues
- Healing attachment issues experienced
- Attachment issues may be helped or resolved with intensive attachment-specific therapy, in addition to child and family trauma work. Skilled and loving caregivers who can self-regulate and provide children with what they need developmentally may be successful at helping children who face these issues adjust
Some, though not all, children who have been adopted or in foster care may experience psychological, neurological, social, and behavioral problems unique to their individual situation. These potential problems which can develop at any age, may be:
- Cognitive delays
- Relationship issues
- Identity formation
- Cultural changes
- Environmental issues such as malnutrition
- Self esteem
- Health issues (obtain family medical records if possible)
Because of changes in adoption over the last few decades – changes that include open adoption, gay adoption, international adoptions and trans-racial (racial transformation) adoptions, and a focus on moving children out of the foster care system into adoptive families – adoption has had an large impact on the basic unit of society and the family.
Adoption research scholars have reported seven core issues to consistently be associated with the unnatural processes of adoption. Problems with loss, grief, rejection, guilt and shame, identity, intimacy, and control uniquely affect each member of the adoption triad. It is important to be mindful of the realities of adoptions as they permanently impact those involved.
Foster Care Facts
Individuals who were in foster care experience higher rates of physical and psychiatric morbidity than the general population and suffer from not being able to trust and that can lead to placements breaking down. In the Casey study of foster children in Oregon and Washington state, they were found to have double the incidence of depression, 20% as compared to 10% and were found to have a higher rate of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than combat veterans with 25% of those studied having PTSD. Children in foster care have a higher probability of having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and deficits in executive functioning, anxiety as well as other developmental problems. These children experience higher degrees of incarceration, poverty, homelessness, and suicide.
It is healthy to ask for help. Please be gentle with yourself when it comes to change. Consulting a licensed professional who has experience in adoption and foster care issues can help you learn how to begin addressing issues relating to adoption and/or foster care. Getting support can prevent some adopted adult issues.
Our therapists, support and assist clients to connect with their authentic self and learn to love, not hate, themselves. Also, behaviors will be evaluated that are not currently working for them. We utilize multiple therapy modalities based on the client’s personality and problem. The therapy modalities are all research-based and are showing success based on the particular problems and the client.
Therapy Options for You
Our greatest desire at Therapy for Families is to help each individual feel comfortable and hopeful about their therapy process. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns. We also offer a free consultation to help assess how therapy can benefit you and help you to feel peace and happiness again.
Foster & Adoption Counseling in Houston, The Woodlands, Katy and Cypress TX
Family Counseling in person in Houston (Clear Lake), The Woodlands and Cypress TX. Online therapy available in Texas, Utah, and Florida.