Chinese Baby Naming Customs
the education process most prospective adoptive parents will be made aware
of the current thoughts on the naming of adopted children. The choices available to adoptive parents are to retain the
child’s birth name, modify the birth name, or simply replace the birth
name. There are valid
arguments for and against each choice and we encourage you to investigate
them before making a final decision.
SACAS firmly believe that the naming of an adopted child is a
decision for each family to make for itself.
The naming of a child is something that the Chinese place great significance on. Unlike children adopted from other countries, most children adopted from China were not named by their birth parents but by an Official of an Orphanage or Social Welfare Institute. Nonetheless many still appear to have been named in accordance with the Chinese customs outlined below and many choose to interpret this as a sign that the Officials both cared for them and wished them well for the future. These naming customs can help us understand the meaning of our child’s birth name and even assist us in choosing a new name. Indeed they can be applied equally to Chinese or Western names.
how do you find out what you child’s birth name means or what it looks
like in Chinese? Sometimes
this valuable information is contained in the report that accompanies the
allocation of a child. Others
have had to ask the Officials in China to explain the meaning of the name
and to discover who chose the name for the child. The
web link below may also be useful as it contains many common English and
Chinese names along with their Chinese Character and meaning.
Further baby name pages are included on the Links page of this web