The experience of Australian relinquishing mothers in open adoption: contact, psychological adjustment and grief

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McNiece, Madeleine (2006) The experience of Australian relinquishing mothers in open adoption: contact, psychological adjustment and grief. Other Degree thesis, Victoria University.

Abstract

This study examined relinquishing mothers experiences in open adoption in the state of Victoria, Australia. The quantitative study aimed to document the actual practice of contact, and to examine the associations between contact and psychological adjustment and grief of relinquishing mothers. The study consisted of 30 participants who completed a questionnaire, which contained questions relating to the adoption and subsequent contact, satisfaction with contact, psychological adjustment measures of the GHQ, Satisfaction with Life Scale and the Delighted-Terrible scale, and grief measures of the Impact of Event Scale and an adapted version of the Grief Experience Inventory. Results revealed a range of type and frequency of contact experiences. Contact was not associated with psychological adjustment and grief as expected, however, a negative association was found between frequency of contact and satisfaction with contact. The co-variates of age of the mother, support at the time of the relinquishment and choice in the relinquishment decision were associated with psychological adjustment and grief. Post hoc analyses revealed guilt was negatively associated with psychological adjustment. Results are interpreted in relation to the minimal previous research in the field, theory and practice. Recommendations for future research are also included.

Additional Information

Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)

Item type Thesis (Other Degree thesis)
URI http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/16084
Subjects Current > FOR Classification > 1103 Clinical Sciences
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Keywords open adoption, parental contact, psychological adjustment, grief, relinquishing mothers, Victoria, Victorian
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