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Psychoanalytic Understanding and Treatment of theAdoptee
Psychoanalytic understanding and treatment of the adoptee

Historically, the adopted person has always been faced with a lifelong dilemma.The adoptee is the central figure in a triad, enveloped within various socialstrictures, customs, and legal structures that deny a historical andpsychological reality—namely, connection to the biological parent. Socialand legal attempts to sever the connection of adoptee to biological parent haveostensibly striven to ensure that the machinery of adoption is functional;nonetheless, they portend the underlying negative collective attitudes towardthe biological parents and, by extension, the adoptee (Feigelman &Silverman, 1986).

Given the prevailing moralistic sexual attitudes, the institution of adoption hasattempted to “protect” the adoptee from the perceived prurience ofthe biological mother, who is typically unwed. On a deeper level, the practiceof permanently separating ...

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