Challenges facing interracial adoptive families

Psychologist David Brodzinsky, PhD, explains the common problems that interracial adoptive families can face and how they can best overcome those problems
Challenges Facing Transracial Adoptive Families
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Challenges facing interracial adoptive families

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Some of the challenges for transracial adoptive families is to build into family life appropriate racial and cultural socialization. It begins with parents becoming color-conscious and not allowing themselves to fall into the trap of believing that they're colorblind. At one time, being colorblind was something that we promoted. We now know that that was inadvisable. In order to help children, there are a variety of things that parents can do; some are practical for some families, some may not be. Living in a community that's racially and culturally diverse, attending a house of worship that is racially and culturally diverse and maybe led with a pastor or the priest may be of a similar race as the child or cultural background as the child, having a child attend schools that are diverse, having friends that represent his or her racial background. For children who are from another country, visiting the country of origin with the child, and I'd usually advise waiting a little while so that it has a meaningful experience for the child; it's not going to be meaningful for a baby. There are many other things that can support racial and cultural socialization and any adoption professional can help families with that.

Psychologist David Brodzinsky, PhD, explains the common problems that interracial adoptive families can face and how they can best overcome those problems

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David Brodzinsky, PhD

Psychologist & Author

David Brodzinsky is Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and Director of the Foster Care Counseling Project at Rutgers University. He also maintains an active private practice serving the clinical needs of children and families, including individuals who are part of the adoption triad. Brodzinsky has written and lectured extensively in the fields of developmental and clinical psychology and is an internationally known expert in the field of adoption. He is co-author of such well-known books as, The Psychology of Adoption, Being Adopted: The Lifelong Search for Self, and Children's Adjustment to Adoption: Developmental and Clinical Issues.

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