When thinking about how one can deal with the traumas experienced by adoptive children, Kim points to the work of psychologist Pauline Boss who, in the 1970s, worked with the families of soldiers who had gone missing in action. Boss was trying to come up with a way to address the specific issue of grieving someone when you didn't know if they were dead or not, and she came up with the concept of "ambiguous loss". A loss that doesn't allow for any kind of complete emotional closure, such as the complex grief one might feel for a relative with dementia or for a child that was never conceived.

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