Adoption is, by definition, the act of legally taking on responsibility for the parenting of another person’s child. Upon adoption, the adopter(s) and adoptee take on all the legal rights and obligation of biological parenthood, which may include inheritance rights, parental decisions, and legal responsibility. An understanding of the history and different types of adoption is essential to marriage, family, and couples counselors in conceptualizing the family system, including the potential emotional and psychological effects of adoption. In addition, informed practitioners can better aid couples and families preparing to adopt as well as help to ease the transition of adoption.

History of Adoption

The first U.S. adoption laws and sanctioned practices originated in the mid-19th century and were focused on relocating the children of impoverished families to ...

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