Research scotches myth that adopted are 'confused' about identity

21st April 2000 at 01:00
THERE IS little or no evidence to prove that being adopted or artificially conceived inevitably leads to children becoming confused about their identities and where they come from.

Australian researchers, speaking at the British Psychological Society's annual conference in Winchester, said the concept of "genealogical bewilderment" had become accepted fact with very little supporting evidence.

Developed initially in relation to adopted children in the 1950s, the concept has been extended uquestioningly to those conceived through the donation of sperm, eggs or embryos, said Pia Broderick, of Murdoch University's school of psychiatry.

But adopted children are only likely to become maladjusted about their origins if family relationships are already disturbed or unsatisfactory. The uncritical acceptance that artificially conceived children are also likely to suffer in the same way has implications for how families and parenting are perceived in society, said Dr Broderick.

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