What Would Cause a Family to Dissolve an Adoption?

Dissolving an adoption is a controversial act. The question people who have no idea what a family goes through, is: Adoption “SHOULD BE PERMANENT”, why are you giving your child away?

Treating families like they’re criminals is just so wrong!  


No family should ever be condemned for placing their child with another family that is better prepared for their child’s issues. This is not a selfish act!!! The placing families always want the best solution for their children’s futures.

Making the decision to place their child comes after trying everything the physicians and therapists recommended. This can go on for years. Often times the families have spent a fortune trying to find answers to their children’s problems.

Defiant kid

When a family finally reaches the end of their rope, as the story goes, then they make the life-changing decision to find a new home for their child. Their options are finding an agency to work with them or a permanent boarding school or residential treatment program or a family member or a friend to take custody of the child. It’s always in everyone’s best interests to do everything legally needed to protect the children.

There are a least two agencies that do secondary adoption placements, Nightlight Christian Adoption’s “Renewed Hope” program and Wasatch International Adoptions’ “Second Chance for Kids” program. I will discuss those agencies’ programs a bit later in this blog.

Believing that adoption should be forever does not take into consideration a child with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) and how that child could destroy the family. The child of RAD is a magnificent manipulator, pitting members of the family against one another.

There are other reasons that a family feels the need to dissolve an adoption. This happens often with children adopted from other countries. The lack of complete medical records is a major issue. There are families willing to adopt deaf or blind children, but when there are other underlying issues they weren’t prepared for, they often feel overwhelmed and make the difficult decision to place their child in a new home.

Kara Lamphere

When I lived with my daughter from India, I knew she wasn’t a normal child. Her behaviors weren’t typical teenage angst. She was angry at anyone who tried to tell her what was right or wrong in her new environment. She was used to stealing, lying and manipulating to get her own way.

She was never diagnosed with RAD, but she definitely had it. She fought with me continually until I was totally exhausted. I always felt that she would have done better in a different home.

I will always advocate placing a child in a different home where there are not the same triggers as there were in the first adoptive home. Some of those triggers are:

  • Same age biological and adopted children
  • Adopted children with a trauma bond
  • Large families of both biological and adopted children
  • Biological children younger than adopted child
  • Jealousy of biological children by adopted child
  • The mother/caregiver figure
  • The current family’s rules

There are other triggers that can be specific to a child. The miraculous thing is that once the child moves to another home, they do almost a 180 turn around. The rate of success in the secondary placements is between 95% and 97%. There’s always going to be one or two children that nothing will work for them at any given time.


Nightlight Christian Adoptions: Renewed Hope Program

          Children Available:

  • Children from International or Foster Care adoptions
  • Occasionally sibling groups
  • Children with special needs
  • Children’s ages range from 6-14
  • Occasionally younger children 3-6

Costs: $1,500 plus attorney’s fees

Wasatch Adoptions: Second Chance for Kids Program

          Children Available:

  • Children from International or Foster Care adoptions
  • Occasionally sibling groups
  • Children with special needs
  • Children’s ages range from 2-11

Costs: $1,500 plus attorney’s fees

Both agencies follow all the legal requirements needed to complete what is called “Secondary Adoptions.”

Please contact me if you would like more information. My email is lamp1685@yahoo.com

N. Ann Lamphere, MSW

Here’s a link to my book: Amazon.com: My Adoption Life: Living with a Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) Child eBook: Lamphere, N. Ann: Kindle Store

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