The Stigma Associated With Adoption: Why It Needs to End?

The Stigma Associated With Adoption

Table of Contents


Adoption is an important decision made by aspiring parents. From the standpoint of a prospective adoptive parent, adoption entails taking responsibility for human life and committing to doing everything possible to ensure that that human life – that child – is reared in a loving household. The stigma associated with adoption is a long-term commitment that requires time, money, attention, and energy. 

What is the stigma associated with adoption?

The stigma associated with adoption is a social condition in which a person or group is identified and discriminated against based on a perceived difference, such as adoption. It is the disqualification from complete social acceptance, and social stigma is a process through which others’ reactions damage the average identity. It can include things like negative social judgement, exclusion, and rejection. 

Internalising stigma can lead to shame and guilt, which can have long-term effects. It may have adverse, emotional, psychological, and behavioural impacts on adopted children and their adoptive parents. 

It is a myth that only infertile couples seek adoption. The stereotype that no one wants to start a family through adoption is untrue. Many couples who are not infertile also prefer to adopt a child.

What are the sources of the stigma associated with adoption?

The stigma associated with adoption includes various reasons, including infertility, minority status, social status, etc. However, adoption legality and stigma-associated attitudes will undoubtedly fluctuate and adapt as society evolves. It is common for prospective adoptive parents to have worries to overcome before moving forward with the adoption procedure. 

Despite the diminished stigma associated with unintended pregnancy, the “shame” of surrendering your child for adoption persists. The decision to place a child for adoption is rarely straightforward, and mothers evaluating their options must weigh all advantages and disadvantages. Society’s primary concern should be the well-being of the birth mother. It should support her in deciding the best interests of herself and her child without losing her self-worth.

We must be careful not to feed the negatives while emphasising adopted children’s issues. Adoption is a response to a problem, not the problem itself. Whatever difficulties an adopted child, their birth parents, or their adoptive parents might have faced, the alternative for that child could have been far worse.

How much does adoption cost?

The cost of a private domestic adoption varies from one adoption to the next and from one state to the other. The cost of an agency might range from 15,000 to 30,000 dollars. Medical, rent, living expenses, phone, and other expenses for the birth parents vary from case to case. 

Adoptive and birth parents can take the services of an adoption agency. The agency can help them with preliminary information, counselling, and matching. It also monitors expenses and money allocation, assists with paperwork, and coordinates the social services required for the placement and final adoption.

Each adoption agency determines fees and service options. It is critical to obtain a comprehensive list of prices, refunds, and non-refundable charges. Adoption agencies that act as conduits for information or visits after the final adoption may charge extra for these services.

Is it possible for the biological parent of the kid I adopt to ‘reclaim’ them?

The Stigma Associated With Adoption

  1. It is impossible to reverse a legally complete adoption. However, the laws of most states allow the birth mother a chance at reclamation for a definite period following the baby’s birth. The mother can reject the adoption even after signing the formal paperwork for giving away parental rights to her kid.
  2. The birth mother has 48 hours (for reclamation) after signing the legal adoption paperwork in some states, while it’s 30 days in others. In a few places, the birth mother doesn’t have the option to change her decision. Rest assured that the attorney will inform the birth mother and adoptive parent about the time frames for such modifications.
  3. For an adoptive family, this can be a difficult moment. After placing a child for adoption and going through the adoption procedure, the concept that a birth mother can withdraw consent to the adoption may feel unfair. Adoption regulations are in place to safeguard everyone involved, even if they vary significantly from state to state. 
  4. The biological parent of the child has the freedom to reclaim them. But it’s not always that they do it. Before the adoption of kids, the adoption agencies screen such parents. However, there are some situations where this does happen, and you may have to give your kid back to their biological parents. Though this would be sad for you if it happens, you have no choice but to accept it and let go of your child. 

Why does the Stigma Associated With Adoption need to End?

  1. There are numerous strategies to counteract this stigma associated with adoption and dispel misconceptions about modern adoption practices. Although the language we use when discussing adoption (for example, instead of saying “give up for adoption,” say “create an adoption plan”) might assist in reframing how people think about it.
  2. The stigma associated with adoption has some wrong conception. For example, people feel that children betray their parents when they mature. Most parents experience this type of stigma. It often prevents couples or individuals from adopting a child instead of going for other alternatives, despite it being one of the best options available. However, adopting a child fulfils your wish of becoming a parent and allows the child to have a home in the form of their adoptive parents’ love and care. Hence, the stigma associated with adoption needs to end. 


Society should encourage and appreciate adoptive parents who have decided to accept and care for a new family member as their child. Despite the stigma, the tide slowly turns toward adoptive parents attempting to make the best of difficult circumstances. This shift in attitude has given many people the confidence to speak openly about their choice to adopt a child. They have gone from being viewed as a saviour to being viewed as the recipient of a beautiful gift.

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