How It’S The Same.
|Adopted children can also have attachment issues or delays resulting from their early experiences, which change the way we think about separation anxiety.|
Dr Jane Aronson, a board-certified pediatrician specializing in adoption medicine, and an adoptive parent herself, explains that separation anxiety is an issue you see in most children, adopted and biological. The difference is that adopted children can also have attachment issues or delays resulting from their early experiences, which change the way we think about separation anxiety.
As an adoptive parent, what should you do when your child begins to experience separation anxiety? After all, giving up showers altogether isn't an option, even if we sometimes feel like it's the only one available. Aronson suggests you ask yourself, "Is this behavior normal for my child?" If so, take steps to create situations that are as secure as possible for your child while at the same time allowing yourself to live some semblance of a normal life.
"I don't think that separation is that tenuous or fragile a moment," says Aronson. "I feel it's an opportunity to use common sense." For example, if you are cooking or cleaning, you can put your child in a pack-n-play. As you work, you can make eye contact, but you also get a few things done. A baby carrier such as an Ergo allows you to "wear" your baby or toddler and maintain closeness while still being productive.
As for leaving your child with another caretaker, Aronson recommends planning and making slow transitions. If you're having someone care for your child in your home, have her come a week or two ahead of time so that you're all in your home together, then begin leaving for short periods of time. If you are taking your child to someone else's house for care, stay for a while each day to ease the transition.
The bottom line is that while you should absolutely be mindful of how being adopted affects your child's behaviors and feelings about separation, this is a normal stage of development for all children, and the way you handle it isn't all that different. My husband and I did much of what many of our friends with biological children did, but to a more extreme degree.
Dr Aronson has some very useful advice for those of us who are often concerned about our parenting decisions in relation to our children's history: "If you're asking questions, you're not messing up that badly! Give yourself a break!"