Adoption and ‘xenophobia parentis’ (fear of birth parents)

YES! “Whether the threat is factual or imagined, the feeling or condition of being afraid is bona fide. When describing birth parents they know almost nothing about, adoptees with acute ‘xenophobia parentis’ may develop vivid imaginations leading to creative visualizations, or even hallucinations, worthy of a good novelist describing perverted, deranged mentally ill individuals, plotting to harm others….”

Adoption Detective | A True Story by Judith Land

“Xenophobic parentis syndrome” are the negative feelings, dislikes and fears of children who are orphaned, fostered, and adopted that are directed against unfamiliar, mysterious and lesser known birth parents. They fear their birth parents may be persons of ill character, mental illness, debauchery, perversion, immorality, ethnically different, uniquely political or religious individuals, who will reflect poorly on their self-image. They fear strangers who may be killers, thieves, cheaters, wanderers, diseased, drug users and prostitutes. Their psychological ‘fight or flight’ response triggers them to nervously cling to the safety of their adoptive family surroundings and their privileged status as the ‘chosen one’.

Fear is related to the specific behaviors of escape and avoidance; a basic survival mechanism occurring in response to a specific stimulus related to future events, or a situation that is unacceptable. Fear is an emotion induced by a perceived threat which causes entities to quickly pull far away from it…

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