ABSTRACT

The purpose of this study is to understand the 'search' experiences of adoptive families. To understand their experiences in searching for birth families, the researchers made contacts with adoptive families who had tried the search before, got informed consents from them, and took in-depth interview with each family. The qualitative case study approach was taken to analyze the data collected. Data collected from five adoptive families were employed for within-case analysis and cross-case analysis. The themes emerged from cross-case analysis were ‘the awareness of being adopted’, ‘curiosity explosion’, ‘the anxious waiting’, ‘the moment the truth was found’, ‘Indeed, I'm a real mom’, and ‘Then, there was a silence’. Based on the results of the study, the policy and practical guidelines to support the search of adoptive families were suggested. Also, the suggestions for the following studies were made to obtain more abundant information beyond the limitations of the study.

KEYWORD

adoptive family, the search for birth family, qualitative case study

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