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Old 10-01-2012, 01:54 PM
 
Location: Liberal Coast
4,277 posts, read 5,158,679 times
Reputation: 3889

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
I have said that we are going to select names that are sound good to all foul of us. I think I may have said it about five times. They may or may not be part of their culture.

I went through the whole PC "retain the culture thing" with our daughter. It backfired. She was not interested and is not interested. Another poster has said the same thing about her daughters, two of whom were adopted from Korea, as was my daughter.

Instead of listening to what the self proclaimed experts say, I am going to take my cue from them, when it comes to the retaining of their culture.

When they first come here, I am going to take the advice of two of the most distinguished experts in the area of attachment and bonding.

1. Keep them close. No multiple care givers
. 2. No trips to Disney World or other places that are overly stimulating
. 3. No huge shopping sprees. It is suggested that parents do not try to make up for a life time of deprivation during the first months. This can cause the child to become attached to gifts rather than people. It's human nature to want to do this, but it is not sound psychologically.
and
4. Do not introduce them to , or associate with people from their culture, whose primary language is theirs. This will also impede attachment and bonding. They will bond to these people, not to you.

I would hope that they would be able to retain their language. I intend to study their language as well. This is less out of desire to maintain their heritage than it is because being multi-lingual will give them a life time of advantage.

The goal when they arrive here is not to preserve the past but to embrace the present.

There will be a lot of time for that later.
You didn't do the same thing with your daughter because you didn't give her a Korean name. You gave her an American name, which is the opposite of what I'm suggesting. My husband and I did pick names that sound great to us, but they are names which are names in both their culture and our culture. You also adopted your daughter as a baby, right? That is entirely different than adopted older children.

 
Old 10-01-2012, 03:59 PM
 
393 posts, read 503,863 times
Reputation: 440
Quote:
Sheena said: (partial clip)

4. Do not introduce them to , or associate with people from their culture, whose primary language is theirs. This will also impede attachment and bonding. They will bond to these people, not to you.

I would hope that they would be able to retain their language. I intend to study their language as well. This is less out of desire to maintain their heritage than it is because being multi-lingual will give them a life time of advantage.
As you point out in #4. it is something you won't do, but then you go on a say you do wish them to retain their language and you intend to study their language. I would urge you to study just how quickly they will lose their language depending on their age - for some it is as little as 12 weeks and English comprehension where it actually makes sense is not until 20 weeks or so (something that bothers me greatly as they have no language to even think in - inbetween loosing their language and being able to understand English). Unless you have already been studying the language, or have a gift of learning languages, then by the time YOU can communicate with them in their original language, they will not know it and have to relearn it.

Another [adoptive] family chose to do the opposite, they took lessons in the language and had a private tutor as well, they introduced themselves to the church members of local church of their future children's culture and language and made friends and once the children were home they started taking them there each week (the church sounds more like a day of fellowship). The children bonded, they accelerated at learing English because their parents had enough language to make things specific and understood - rather than just pointing to things and saying the word, and the children are retaining their original language. I think what they did was brilliant, compassionate, and above all child centric.

As to naming I think it is too much, too quickly, and will create far too much pressure on older children. Once home and adapted to everything being totally different, then perhaps based solely on the child's personality and willingness. Being a parent of a child from a hard place is not the same as bringing home a 4 month old who at that age would not even recognise her name.
 
Old 10-01-2012, 07:28 PM
 
Location: The New England part of Ohio
18,599 posts, read 23,156,163 times
Reputation: 48593
Quote:
Originally Posted by psr13 View Post
You didn't do the same thing with your daughter because you didn't give her a Korean name. You gave her an American name, which is the opposite of what I'm suggesting. My husband and I did pick names that sound great to us, but they are names which are names in both their culture and our culture. You also adopted your daughter as a baby, right? That is entirely different than adopted older children.
I am doing the same thing with these children We will name them. We named our daughter and we will name these children.

Honestly it's my business. I was asking for advice about which new names - ones that would sound good to them and to us. NOT IF WE SHOULD!

We removed our daughter's Korean name. She knows it and likes it's meaning as we do. It's sort of like a Hebrew name for Jewish people or the name taken by Roman Catholics at their confirmation.
 
Old 10-01-2012, 07:33 PM
 
Location: The New England part of Ohio
18,599 posts, read 23,156,163 times
Reputation: 48593
Quote:
Originally Posted by rohirette View Post
This is going nowhere.

There really aren't many times when people change their minds about something sensitive and emotional. Generally, you can only reach someone if

1) they are neutral to begin with, with no personal stake, or

2) you can make them feel what your words cannot convey

If even one person posted here who was adopted as an older child to say that they were glad their name was changed, I would willingly change my view.
Well I know many! So I'm satisfied! I am adopting and I'm doing what so many others have done before me. If you adopt, you should handle it your way.

I do not personally know any unhappy adoptees or adopted children who were one bit reluctant to take on a fresh new name given with love.

I know about fifty. Yes that's correct. And you know what ?- The Kids Are Alright!
 
Old 10-01-2012, 08:36 PM
 
1,879 posts, read 1,857,654 times
Reputation: 1462
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
Well I know many! So I'm satisfied! I am adopting and I'm doing what so many others have done before me. If you adopt, you should handle it your way.

I do not personally know any unhappy adoptees or adopted children who were one bit reluctant to take on a fresh new name given with love.

I know about fifty. Yes that's correct. And you know what ?- The Kids Are Alright!
I don't think people on here so much have a problem with changing their names per se, it is more the fact that you consider it mandatory. Were all 50 adoptees older children? Of those that were, were they told that the name change was mandatory whether they liked it or not? Were they told upfront that this would happen and that it was a condition of their adoption or was it sprung on them?

One genuine question, if they don't want to change their names, are you willing to compromise by giving them names as close as possible to their names (eg, as some of us have mentioned before, Alec and Alicia (with an s sound rather than a "sh" sound)).

And you know what ?- The Kids Are Alright!

And would you be open to listening to them if they weren't?
 
Old 10-02-2012, 03:38 AM
 
203 posts, read 200,032 times
Reputation: 306
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
Honestly it's my business. I was asking for advice about which new names - ones that would sound good to them and to us. NOT IF WE SHOULD!
Perhaps you should start a new thread focused on your topic. The topic of this thread is:

I'm curious as to whether you think it is appropriate to change a child's birthname. I'm referring to older kids, not babies.

Based on this topic, there has been a discussion of whether folks think it is appropriate to change a child's birth name (older kids, not babies). It is my feeling that your thoughts and comments have been responded to in the context of the actual thread topic. If you are not interested in the thoughts of others based on the actual thread topic, perhaps you might consider starting a new thread about names and make it clear that you only want advice on which new names you should give to older children who already have names.
 
Old 10-02-2012, 05:31 AM
 
1,024 posts, read 984,965 times
Reputation: 834
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artful Dodger View Post
As you point out in #4. it is something you won't do, but then you go on a say you do wish them to retain their language and you intend to study their language. I would urge you to study just how quickly they will lose their language depending on their age - for some it is as little as 12 weeks and English comprehension where it actually makes sense is not until 20 weeks or so (something that bothers me greatly as they have no language to even think in - inbetween loosing their language and being able to understand English). Unless you have already been studying the language, or have a gift of learning languages, then by the time YOU can communicate with them in their original language, they will not know it and have to relearn it.

Another [adoptive] family chose to do the opposite, they took lessons in the language and had a private tutor as well, they introduced themselves to the church members of local church of their future children's culture and language and made friends and once the children were home they started taking them there each week (the church sounds more like a day of fellowship). The children bonded, they accelerated at learing English because their parents had enough language to make things specific and understood - rather than just pointing to things and saying the word, and the children are retaining their original language. I think what they did was brilliant, compassionate, and above all child centric.

As to naming I think it is too much, too quickly, and will create far too much pressure on older children. Once home and adapted to everything being totally different, then perhaps based solely on the child's personality and willingness. Being a parent of a child from a hard place is not the same as bringing home a 4 month old who at that age would not even recognise her name.
This is my concern for children who are older & adopted internationally as well. Who would advise adoptive parents to hide them away from anything & everything that might be the least bit familiar/comforting to them? Developmental psychologists know that for every year the child ages prior to meeting a new parents, it will take twice the time for them to bond with them. If the child is three, it will take six years regardless of how much you shelter them from their culture/language.

By that time all you have taught the child is how to conform & reject themselves.
 
Old 10-02-2012, 06:28 AM
 
13 posts, read 9,246 times
Reputation: 23
Exactly. The kids are alright, but the future adults may not be. This is the point people miss. Life in the fog is fine. *If* the day should come where we feel our origins (and by extension, our birthright) have been suppressed/ trampled upon, our eyes, ears, and hearts are awakened to a whole new world of pain that only those who share it can comprehend.

No piece of paper can change my DNA. As for my surname, my surname is whatever name it would have been had I been kept. Why? 1. Because my father would have kept me if my mother had let. 2. Because surnames are about who you are related to.

Closed adoption, in the sense of concealing original identity, is to me, "aborting" the natural course of one's life.

You may even go so far as to say, I cannot emotionally separate identity and blood. My blood IS my identity.
 
Old 10-02-2012, 07:54 AM
 
10,452 posts, read 10,605,391 times
Reputation: 12532
Quote:
Originally Posted by MayTreeArk View Post
Exactly. The kids are alright, but the future adults may not be. This is the point people miss. Life in the fog is fine. *If* the day should come where we feel our origins (and by extension, our birthright) have been suppressed/ trampled upon, our eyes, ears, and hearts are awakened to a whole new world of pain that only those who share it can comprehend.

No piece of paper can change my DNA. As for my surname, my surname is whatever name it would have been had I been kept. Why? 1. Because my father would have kept me if my mother had let. 2. Because surnames are about who you are related to.
I beg to differ. How are taking on adoptive surnames any different than taking on married surnames? Surnames to me are about being part of a family unit. When you marry, you create a new family unit by love, not by blood. Same goes for adoption.

Not to mention, from a logistical perspective, I know that I would never be able to function in the US if I kept my original last name. My original last name was 12 letters long and 6 syllables, with lots of "ye" and "ya" sounds that are hard for American ears to grasp. I am part of my adoptive family unit, and it is therefore appropriate for me to take on my adoptive family's surname. They retained some of my Russian heritage through my first name, which I felt was appropriate.

I have a friend whose brother was adopted and he kept his pre-adoptive surname. He has a major complex about it today because he feels like he doesn't fit, and a lot of it has to do with the fact that he literally has a separate last name from the rest of his family. Personally I think it's just absurd to let your child stand out like that. I can understand retaining a first name or part of a first name from pre-adoption, but surnames should definitely be changed IMO, to show that love makes a family, not blood.

Quote:
Closed adoption, in the sense of concealing original identity, is to me, "aborting" the natural course of one's life.
I disagree. Why can't adoption be part of someone's natural course of life, in the same way marriage might be?

Quote:
You may even go so far as to say, I cannot emotionally separate identity and blood. My blood IS my identity.
Wow, I find this really offensive. Does this also mean that you place absolutely no value on non-genetic relationships? For example if you were to become involved in a serious romantic relationship with someone (who is NOT genetically related) would this serious relationship not become a part of your identity? Have you never had a friend or someone who had a huge impact on your life and who you are, who isn't part of your genetic tree?
 
Old 10-02-2012, 08:33 AM
 
1,024 posts, read 984,965 times
Reputation: 834
Quote:
Originally Posted by nimchimpsky View Post
I have a friend whose brother was adopted and he kept his pre-adoptive surname. He has a major complex about it today because he feels like he doesn't fit, and a lot of it has to do with the fact that he literally has a separate last name from the rest of his family. Personally I think it's just absurd to let your child stand out like that. I can understand retaining a first name or part of a first name from pre-adoption, but surnames should definitely be changed IMO, to show that love makes a family, not blood.
Seems to me that adoption is the root of feeling like he doesn't fit in & the different name just causes him to be aware of it/face his feelings. There is nothing wrong with him processing those feelings, in fact it is good for him to acknowledge that while he is part of the family he is also different. Perhaps families should help support adoptees in working through those feelings, rather than encouraging denial?

Quote:
I disagree. Why can't adoption be part of someone's natural course of life, in the same way marriage might be?
The difference here is that you are an adult that consents to marriage, with the choice to retain your identity rather than having the government seal it away from you as a child with absolutely no choice.
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