Adoption Glossary - B

As you begin to research adoption, you'll find that it comes with its own adoption terms and jargon. Although some adoption terms may be defined a little differently by another adoption professional, we hope the adoption glossary below will help you make sense of some buzzwords used in adoption. If you're unable to find the information you're looking for in the adoption glossary, call one of our knowledgeable Adoption Specialists at
Bi-Racial - Refers to a child that has heritage of two races, usually African-American and another race.
Biological Child - The child of parents by birth.
Bipolar Disorder - A category of mental illnesses in which mood and affect are disturbed - characterized by irregular cycles of mania and/or depression. During manic periods, the individual may be in a very elevated mood and exhibit symptoms of hyperactivity, wakefulness and distractibility or irritability. In very severe episodes, psychotic symptoms may also be present. Individuals experiencing depressive periods can exhibit sustained symptoms of depressed mood, diminished pleasure or interest in most activities, fatigue, sleep disturbance (either insomnia or hypersomnia), weight loss or weight gain and slowed thinking.
Birth Certificate (amended) - Legal document after the adoption is finalized, replacing the original birth certificate, as indicated by the court in the adoption decree, with the adoptive parents' names replacing the birth parents' names.
Birth Certificate (original) - Legal document issued at time of birth with the child's biological history including the identity of one or both biological parents.
Birth Father - Biological father of a child that is adopted or planning to be adopted.
Birth Mother - Biological mother of a child that is adopted or planning to be adopted.
Birth Parent - A child's biological parent.
Black Market - Adoption performed outside the law, often referred to as the illegal buying and selling of children.
Boarder Babies - Infants abandoned in hospitals because of the parents' inability to care for them. These babies are usually born HIV-positive or drug addicted.
Bonding - The process of developing lasting emotional ties with one's immediate caregivers; seen as the first and primary developmental task of a human being and central to the person's ability to relate to others throughout life.

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