Adopting Overseas

A Guide to Adopting from Australia, plus personal stories that will inspire you.

By: Lucy Burns and Ailsa Burns


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Published: Jul/07 (AU/NZ)

Intercountry adoption is the most common form of adoption in Australia. This wonderful book looks not only at the processes involved in adopting a child from other countries into Australian families but also includes the findings of the largest survey of adoptive parents in Australia. The information they share with us and their personal experiences are heartwarming, inspiring and sometimes confronting, the stories are compelling reading!

This book is a wonderful guide to intercountry adoption in Australia and is the first comprehensive account in Australia.

Adopting Overseas offers both expert advise and personal accounts on how best to manage a range of issues that some adoptive families will face such as;
- Why choose intercountry adoption?
- The assessment process and reasons why it can be a lengthy and stressful process
- Will our child attach to us?
- Settling
- Tantrums and how to manage them
- Anxiety about being abandoned
- Health issues such as skin, teeth, delayed growth and motor development
- Behavioural/Psychological issues
- Finding out about your child's background and keeping the birth culture alive
- Racism

This book is the first comprehensive account of adopting from overseas with tips on travel, health and child care, through the advice of other adoptive parents and experts.

This book provides useful tips and coping strategies for managing change for both the parents and children of adoptive families who may be experiencing problems.
It is a resource for families considering inter-country adoption in Australia as well as those who have adopted children, as well as adoption professionals and those working in the area of child welfare generally

Lucy Burns is a parent of two children adopted from overseas. She found there was very little information or support available in the form of books, especially after returning from overseas with her children. She has been strongly involved in the adoptive parent support group (ASIAC NSW) and became president for three years. The book has been about three years in the making. Lucy and Ailsa reviewed a lot of relevant information, undertook a survey of about two hundred adoptive families, conducted interviews with adoption experts and collect a number of personal accounts from adoptive parents.

Adoptive parents often feel they have to be super parents, equipped for all situations, and that asking for help is like admitting some sort of failure as a parent. There is very much a code of silence about adoptive parents asking for help. Many parents are afraid that reporting problems might lead to the involvement of child protection services, says author and mother of two adopted children, Lucy Burns.

The authors are donating their royalties from the sales of this book to overseas aid for children.

This book is proudly supported by the Australian Society for Intercountry Aid for Children (ASIAC)

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ISBN: 9781921295027

Published: Jul/07 (AU/NZ)

Format: Paperback

Dimensions: 234 mm  x  153 mm

Extent: 224 pages

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About The Author

Lucy Burns

Lucy Burns


Has a background in public health policy and epidemiology and is a Lecturer at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of New South Wales. She has published internationally in the area of drugs, mental health and pregnancy and has a strong interest in the areas of adoption and child development. As a parent of two children adopted from overseas, Lucy found there was very little information or support available, especially after returning from overseas with her children. She became strongly involved in the adoptive parent support group ASIAC NSW) and became president for three years. She is married to Paul and is the proud mother of two children adopted from overseas, Tatch and Bee.

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Ailsa Burns

Ailsa Burns


Ailsa Burns PhD 1928-2012
Was an Honorary Associate in the Department of Psychology, Macquarie University, with a longstanding research interest and international profile in examining the changing nature of families in Australia.

She wrote many articles and books in the area of child development and the impact of changes in family structure on children. She is also Tatch, Bee, Max and Cam's much loved 39;Gramma'. 

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