2020 Student Research Conference:
33rd Annual Student Research Conference

Barriers to Bonding: An Exploratory Study of Non-Traditional Adoption Experiences

Samuel T. Pey
Dr. Paul Shapiro and Dr. Brian Ott, Faculty Mentors

For many people creating a family is an incredibly important part of their lives. Fostering and adoption is one such path to family for some, but barriers still exist which make it difficult for people who do not fit the traditional two different sex parent mold. Using three in-depth qualitative interviews of foster/adoptive parents this exploratory study begins an analysis of the current foster/adoption landscape for non-traditional families. The legal challenges to same-sex adoption that once created a patchwork of state policies were eliminated with the 2015 legalization of same-sex marriage. However, there still remain barriers including agencies and officials who use their position to make the foster/adoption process more difficult for non-traditional families, as well as stigma surrounding single parenting. Non-traditional families are able to overcome these barriers by tapping into pre-existing support networks and forming good relationships with workers within the foster/adoption system.

Keywords: Adoption, Foster Care, Family, Same-sex Parents, Single Parents


Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

Session: TBA
Location: TBA
Time: TBA

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