The Name Game

11 Aug

I got an email asking why I go back and forth with Seung Joo/Coralie/Cora’s name.  “Wouldn’t it just be easier to stick with one?”

Well….maybe! It does seem easy for many people to just go with the American name they picked once they accept a referral.  In our case, our sweet miss is older and her name IS Seung Joo and it’s been Seung Joo for almost 4 1/2 years.  No matter if we plan on trying to have her acclimate to a new name, the choice is ultimately hers.  She’ll be close to age 5 when she comes home, and that’s a tough age to just make a switch.

When we picked the name Coralie, we always planned on her going by Cora for the most part.  But it took us quite a while before we would even call her anything other than Seung Joo.  Because we “got to know her” as Seung Joo.  Today in our conversations, we alternate her names, sometimes using all three in one conversation.  (And, as I do in the blog.)  It’s not an intentional way to make you confused! πŸ˜‰ 

Logan ONLY calls her Seung Joo.  Miles is like Dave and I and alternates her name by three.

I told one of the people at our agency what SJ’s American name will be and she said, “It will be interesting to see if she ever makes the switch from SJ to Coralie.  Some kids at her age just don’t.”  And no matter if she does or doesn’t, keeping her middle name Seung Joo was important for us in case she ever wants to choose her Korean name as she ages. 

So the reason we keep going back and forth is because we are the only ones who know her as Cora or Coralie. She has no idea that a name will be added to her name, Seung Joo, and we have to be realistic that she might not want it changed.  And of course, if she doesn’t, that’s totally fine, too!  In Korea, they don’t have middle names like we do.  Her name is Seung Joo _(last name)___.  But Joo isn’t her middle name, it’s an extension of her first.  So, really, we’re not taking away her name of Seung Joo, we’re just adding a name in front of it. 

Whether she accepts it or not, we’ll see as we get there, but when she comes home, we plan on calling her Coralie Seung Joo as she adjusts (Or maybe Cora Seung Joo) with the idea that gradually it would stop at Cora. We would think that as time passes, she’ll grow to know and grow accustomed to being called Cora – eventually becoming Cora.  We’ll follow her lead without expectations one way or the other.

Until then, you’ll continue seeing Cora, Coralie, Seung Joo and SJ here! πŸ™‚


4 Responses to “The Name Game”

  1. Grace August 11, 2011 at 7:13 pm #

    I personally love all 4 variations! Who wouldn't want so many names? You could have a new one every day πŸ™‚

  2. Jen August 12, 2011 at 1:53 am #

    ha! Thanks Grace! πŸ™‚

  3. Lucky Mama August 12, 2011 at 3:15 am #

    Our little one goes by her American and Korean names. We use then both often in the same conversation to. I don't see why she can't have both an American name and a Korean name; after all she's both a Korean and soon to be American girl.

  4. Jen August 12, 2011 at 12:23 pm #

    Lucky Mama, hence the reason we're keeping her Korean name and just adding an American name to it. She can have, and will have, both names — just a reflection on what's going through our minds as we grow to use them both.

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