Thursday, May 7, 2009

Why the name changes?

We've been asked why do we choose to change our children's names. Adoptive parents have a choice to change or not change their children's names.
  • When Pam and I bring our children home, changing their names gives us as parents that sense of primary parenthood because we named them. (That may sound shallow to some, but it's meaningful to us)
  • We try to parallel the Lord's adoption of us. When we became Christians, we became new creatures with new lives, new cultures, and new languages to learn. Several times, He gave his newly adopted children new names (i.e. Abram/Abraham, Jacob/Israel, Saul/Paul)
  • Some of our children have fairly difficult names to pronounce (There are people who still screw up my name). We wanted to ease their problems in school. Try on Netsanet, Tseganesh, Bereket, Fujian, Meron, Efraim, and Tsegahun. A couple of them are not too difficult.
  • We have retained their birth names in the legal names. Their birth names and family names will become their "middle names". So once they reach adulthood/college they can go by any name they choose.

Some adoptive parents change names, some don't. We know one family that has changed some of their children's names and not the others.


The Gang's Momma said...

Hmmmm, that's pretty much what I thought. We faced a lot of the same questions when adopting Li'l Empress and depending on the day, I had a variety of responses. It'll be great for the kids to hear this reasoning from you as they grow and hear more of their story from your perspective, don't ya think?! I have my own little story for the choosing of each kids' name and I'm so glad that the Lord did the same for Li'l E's journey, even if it wasn't during a physical pregnancy.

Counting the days with you :)

Rick Lawrenson said...

Makes sense to me.

How long does it take the kids to make the transition from the old name to the new?

het lieveheersbeestje said...

I just asked you about the name change, but here I found it out, sorry! It is very intresting, indeed the children do start a new live and by giving them another name, it becomes real for all of you. Still, they are from another world too, so using their birthname as a seccond name sounds great! By the way, did you know that in Ethiopia, the first name of your father will be your family name? So in fact there are no real family names. We decided to gave our children (father from E.) all four, a thirth name and that is his first name. So for the law overhere, they have three first names and papa's family name, but in E. they can use papa's first name as a family name. By the way, overhere we can not addopt if any of the parents is over all are so lucky!