Bonding with your adopted child

Watch Sheila Kamen, PsyD's video on Bonding with your adopted child...
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Bonding with your adopted child

Adoptive parents bond with their children in the same ways that biological children do, but it may look a little bit different if the child coming into your family is a little bit older. With infants, you can cuddle with them, hold them, gaze into their eyes, adoptive moms can induce lactation so that they can breastfeed their child. With older children, depending on their history, you may want to initiate physical contact with them by holding hands or sitting close to them or going swimming with them. Also you could do something fun together like go shopping for and cook a meal from your family or from their culture. The most important thing that parents need to know to improve their bonding with their adopted child is that if you're prepared for the behaviors that your child may exhibit in the home and big feelings that they may have, then you will embrace your role as a parent and feel entitled to take care of them and nurture them. And that, in turn, increases bonding. So don't put too much pressure on yourself. It may take time, just the way it does with biological parents. Be relaxed about it and let time bring you closer together.

Watch Sheila Kamen, PsyD's video on Bonding with your adopted child...


Expert Bio

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Sheila Kamen, PsyD

Psychologist & Sex Therapist

Sheila Kamen works with individuals and couples in La Jolla, California.  She works with individuals and couples as a coach and therapist. She specializes in couples therapy, sex therapy, and relationship coaching. She also offers premarital and family building counseling. While she no longer works with children, she does help parents with issues related to children.  Sheila lives in San Diego. 

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