Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (MSW)


Social Work

First Advisor

Maria Brown

Second Advisor

Kelly Kuhn Donahue

Third Advisor

Laura Boisen


This exploratory study explores birth parents who changed their minds and removed their child from the adoptive home; what factors seemed influential in that decision; and what pregnancy counselors think could have prevented the disruption.

Eight pregnancy counselors participated in a semi-structured interview. The initial findings indicated that: (1) infant disruptions comprised a very small number of infant adoptive placements; (2) pregnancy counselors perceived that nothing could have been done to prevent the disruption, except mandatory foster care; and (3) the reasons that birth parents reverse their adoption decision are often complex and unforeseen.

Additional studies utilizing birth parents and varied methodologies are needed to better understand this understudied population of birth parents who reverse their adoption plan and remove their child from adoptive homes.


SC 11.MSW.1998.Mayo.MEF

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