I know I’ve blogged about the naming-your-internationally-adopted-child topic before. I don’t really want to rehash it here. Blah. I can’t find the post I wrote about this before, some many, many months ago, to link it up here so that you can read it, if you really care to.
I guess this means a tad bit of rehashing.
We did not keep any part of Tank Boy’s Korean name as part of his legal name. This decision was made twice. First, it was made from the get-go, when we very first knew we were to adopt two boys. We decided then to name them after our grandfathers. Then, of course, came all of the classes and reading and “Oh my word, they say he’ll be scarred for life if we don’t keep at least part of his Korean name!” discussions. Then came the actual first-hand discussion with adult adoptees and those who are friends/family of adult adoptees.
It was, of course, those last discussions which helped us make the decision the second time. Those were the discussions wherein we were told, “Hey, we’re Americans. Why wouldn’t we want our American names? These folks who adopted us? They are our parents. Why wouldn’t we want the names they picked for us?”
So Tank Boy has his American name, though I still sometimes toss his Korean name into the mix when I’m talking to him.
McH has taken to calling him Buckwheat. I have no idea why.
We’ve pretty much had a name picked out for Quinn for quite a while, but I wanted to wait until we got the referral, until we found out his Vietnamese name, before making a final decision. Well, we are sticking with the name we have picked. It’s not that I dislike his Vietnamese name, it’s just that it doesn’t fit. I pretty much knew that it wouldn’t — I have yet to find a Vietnamese name that begins with the letter W. You see, his first name is after both of McH’s grandfathers, and his middle name, well, it isn’t after anybody in particular, but it makes it so that all three of his initials are the same as my father’s.
Call me corny. I don’t care.
Call me insensitive to my son’s Vietnamese heritage. I’ll just tell you to take a deep breath. There are much more important issues with which to concern oneself when it comes to parenting.
But here is the thing: both of my sons were named by their birth mothers. This is not something I want to just toss aside and forget. This is something I do want them to know. If, when they are older, they want to add these names, or parts of these names, back as part of their legal name, that is totally fine by me.
So, here is my plea: does anyone know anyone who could make wall plaques for me with the boys’ original names in both English and their language of origin? Carved, painted, or a combination thereof, I really don’t care. Just as long as they don’t look like something you’d pick up at some Americana arts and crafts fair. I really want them to have an Asian feel, to reflect the boys’ birth countries. Money is no object — well, that’s a lie, of course — I just really would like some personalized name plaques to hang in their bedroom, and I’m not particularly artistic.
I wish my grandfather were still alive. He’d be able to do the job beautifully.
And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt says hello.
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