Considering domestic adoption of an adolescent

Gregory Keck, PhD Founder and Director of the Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio, explains what happens when foster children age out and why they benefit so much if adopted
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Considering domestic adoption of an adolescent

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Well, children in our foster care system "age out" is the term that is given at age 18 and typically they don't have any supports after that. Many of them can't go back to a birth family and the numbers across the world, actually, are very high, they're over-represented in prisons. I think in Massachusetts I had read, and in the U.K., something 65% to 75% of people in prisons had had foster care history. Of the homeless in New York City I think it's estimated that 75% to 80% of the homeless people in New York City have a history of foster care. Mental health systems and populations are also over-represented by people who have been in foster care. So that this thought that we...they're just going to grow up, go on their own, is really a myth, and I think if families would be willing to adopt older kids, adolescents, late adolescents, that they would at least have a support system so that when they did run into struggles and difficulties they would have a family to rely on like probably almost everyone even watching this has done. It is the very rare 18-year-old that can go into the world and take care of him or herself without some kind of family support.

Gregory Keck, PhD Founder and Director of the Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio, explains what happens when foster children age out and why they benefit so much if adopted

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Gregory Keck, PhD

Founder & Director, Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio

Gregory C. Keck, Ph.D., is the founder and director of the Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio. He is an internationally known psychologist and trainer who addresses the issues of trauma, adoption, and post-adoption challenges. He and his staff provide attachment therapy for adoptive families whose children have experienced serious early childhood maltreatment prior to adoption. In 2012, he received the National Association of Social Workers State of Ohio Lifetime Achievement Award. He is the parent of two sons who were adopted in adolescence.

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