Children adopted from China: Attachment security two years later

Journal article
Canadian CW research
Authors

Cohen, Nancy J.
Farnia, Fataneh

Source
Children and Youth Services Review, 33(11): 2342-2346
Abstract

Background: This study continues the examination of the process of attachment formation of mothers and their adopted Chinese daughters two years postadoption. Method: 30 children adopted from China (mean age = 13.6 months at adoption) were assessed and followed two years following adoption. They were compared to 31 nonadopted Canadian girls of similar age and family background. In earlier reported longitudinal studies of the adopted children, maternal reports of attachment security were employed. In the current study the Strange Situation Procedure was used. Results: Adopted children show signs of having a secure attachment with their mothers two years following adoption. There was some evidence that disorganized attachment characterized these children more so than for children in the comparison group. Conclusions: The moderate degree of emotional deprivation experienced by Chinese adoptees does not hinder their ability to form a new attachment with adoptive mothers. Attachment appears open to change, even after a time when children should have already formed an attachment relationship and the change is maintained.

ISBN / ISSN / DOI
10.1016/j.childyouth.2011.08.006