Contact in Adoption: The Experience of Adoptive Families in the USA

Gretchen Miller Wrobel, Harold D Grotevant, Jerica M Berge, Tai J Mendenhall, Ruth McRoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Contact in adoption is a complex issue that adoption professionals frequently negotiate. Today most adoption placements include an initial plan for contact that in many instances changes over time. By understanding contact as an issue that presents itself over the course of an adopted person's lifetime, the complexities it brings to the adoption experience can be seen. Gretchen Miller Wrobel, Harold D Grotevant, Jerica Berge, Tai Mendenhall and Ruth McRoy discuss contact from a US perspective using findings from the Minnesota/Texas Adoption Project, a longitudinal study of openness in adoption. They examine how curiosity, satisfaction with adoptive contact, family communication and searching influence decision-making about the extent of contact. Implications for adoption professionals in the USA and the UK are also presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-67
Number of pages11
JournalAdoption and Fostering
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 2003

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We acknowledge with appreciation funding from the William T Grant Foundation, US Office of Population Affairs, the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the John D and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation, the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station and the University Research Institute of the University of Texas at Austin. Most importantly, we thank the many participants in our study who have shared their perspectives and lives with us, in the hope that this knowledge will benefit others in the future.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2003, © 2003 British Association for Adoption & Fostering.


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