Adoption is a process that can be enormously challenging. The issues that can emerge are varied and can impact on the best functioning of the adoptive family and adopted child.
Prospective adoptive parents coming to terms with infertility, dealing with the attitudes of those close to you when considering adoption, considering the implications for yourself and your immediate family of adopting a child, managing the screening process and coping with anxiety of waiting for the placement of a baby or child.
Being an adoptive family is challenging. Managing the sibling relationships is more complicated in adoptive families, whether all children are adopted or there is a combination of biological and adopted children. Being a conspicuous family can add stress to the usual difficulties families have to deal with and for adoptees, adolescence is an especially complicated phase in which issues of identity and belonging become central. Being an adult adoptee can also be challenging, whether you have known that you are adopted from childhood, or if you have only found out as an adult. Managing relationships with your adoptive family as well as your biological family can be complicated. Being a trans-racial adoptee, has further complications. Being raised in a predominantly white environment as a black person exposes you to racism and creates potential identity and other conflicts. Your adoptive family will not always be in a position to assist you with these challenges, so addressing these issues with a professional or in a group can be very effective.
Cape Town Adoption Support (CTAS) aims to offer support by supporting adoptive families psychologically, sharing information about adoption, and increasing the awareness about adoption.
Individual therapy for adult adoptees.
Individual or couple therapy for adults considering adoption
Therapy for adoptive parents.
Family therapy for adoptive families concerned about behavioural or emotional difficulties their adoptive children face.
Group therapy for potential adoptive parents. I aim to demystify the process of adoption, and facilitate an exploration of the issues that impact on their decision to adopt in a supportive environment with other parents who are also considering adoption so that those who are considering adopting, can make the decision to adopt with all the necessary information and support. We discuss issues such as:
- Deciding to adopt. Getting everyone on the same page. Dealing with the attitudes of friends and extended family. Considering how your children cope with a new adopted sibling
- Information about different adoption routes, Choosing the adoption agency/adoption social worker who is right for your family
- What to expect from the screening process
- Preparing for the arrival of the baby and managing the anxiety of waiting for placement
- Managing cross cultural and inter-racial adoption, adopting as a single parent or a same sex couple.
Group therapy for those parenting adopted children.
Parenting an adopted child requires expert parenting, and the ability to anticipate the needs of the child in relation to their adoption. I have been working with adoptive parents for many years, supporting them to grow their parenting skills and increase their awareness of the complexities of raising an adopted child, particularly a transracially adopted child. We talk about challenges facing those parenting adopted children, maintaining good relationships with their spouses and managing interactions with the public. These sessions focus on parenting children with a history of trauma, navigating parenting relationships with extended families, including birth families, managing children’s wish to search for biological parents, specific special needs, developmental delays, attachment difficulties, oppositional defiant disorder, and anxiety disorders. We deal with talking to your child about adoption, celebrating important adoption events, dealing with sibling issues, managing transracial adoption and dealing with racism, dealing with your child’s loss and feelings of rejection, and peer relationships.
Group therapy for adult adoptees.
This is a space for adult adoptees to explore difficulties related to their adoption. The aim is to share adoption experiences, explore identity and belonging and work on ways to improve authentic relationships with all members of their family, adopted and biological. Some of the issues explored include late disclosure adoptions, transracial adoption, and open adoption. Group therapy for adolescent adoptees. This closed group aims to support adopted teens at a time when identity issues raise the adoption-related issues in an intense way. It’s an opportunity for adoptees to discuss these complicated issues with other adoptees who really understand what they are going through. We explore adoptee’s relationships with adoptive parents and siblings, and their biological family, and how to deal with questions as well as managing friends, dating and exploring where adoptees “belong”.
The Adoption Book Club
This is a social initiative for people interested in adoption. Every month the group will read an adoption-themed book and discus it.
Below see a list of policies and guidelines about adoption practice in South Africa