Growing Up Adopted: Parenting Preteens


Practical advice for parenting adopted preteens, from ages 10 through 12.

father and daughter talking about adoption outside

Adoptees and the Seven Core Issues of Adoption

Adoptees and the Seven Core Issues of Adoption

Adopted persons tend to experience seven core issues related to their adoption. Discussions of adoption over the years have often overlooked the pain and struggles of adoptees, but identifying these core issues and helping children integrate them as they grow validates their experiences, decreasing feelings of being different and isolated.

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Peer exclusion

Helping Your Child with Peer Exclusion

Parents cannot prevent their child from experiencing exclusion or feeling "different" from time to time. You can, however, lessen the negative effects of this common occurrence during the preteen years.

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A girl navigating difficult peer relationships and getting rejected

What Will Their Friends Think?

As kids grow up, they look to their friends for acceptance — and desperately want to fit in.

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Divorce after adoption

A New ‘Forever’

Adoptive children can feel familial changes, like divorce after adoption, particularly keenly. Use these tips to help kids adapt to new stepparents.

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Culture camp

Is Culture Camp for Us?

What will my child learn and talk about at camp? What would our family take away from a week attending together?

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Tween adoptees can undergo identity struggles

“I Just Don’t Fit In”

Tween adoptees may walk away from their cultural heritage, family outings, and even their family as they try to fit in with peers.

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Is your adopted child ready for sleep away camp?

Can My Child Handle Sleep Away Camp?

Parents wonder if preteens will experience separation anxiety at sleep away camp. Learn how to tell if yours is ready, and then ease the transition.

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How to help your adopted child relax her drive for perfection.

When Kids Worry About Being Perfect

We want our children to do well—but we also want them to enjoy being kids. How do we help them strike a balance?

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How to help kids get over fear of parents death.

Dealing with Adoptee Fears of Loss

Do adoptees who've already experienced the loss of birth parents worry more than other kids about their parents dying?

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Expert tips on how to minimize the trauma of foster care placement for preteens.

Minimizing Placement Trauma

Pre-adolescents have special needs in a foster care placement. Our expert provides tips on how to make the transition to an adoptive home a little easier.

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Tips for revealing painful adoption details to your child.

Revealing Painful Adoption Details

Children need to know their full stories before the teen years. Why, and how, to explain troubling information.

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Anyone can succumb to peer pressure

Peers, Pressure, and Popularity

"Come on, everyone else is doing it."

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Coversations about birth mothers can be emotional

A Death in the Family

As children get older, they come to understand that everyone experiences loss.

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A preteen struggles with his identity

When Kids Find Mom Embarrassing

No matter what you do, your preteen is mortified by your presence. What's going on?

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