Friday, February 22, 2013

Naming your Filipino Kid

Is it true, my coworker asked me one day, that Filipinos name their kids funny names?

This question had been prompted by a request that I not get offended by the question that he was about to ask.

To be honest, I wasn't offended.  I completely agreed with him.

I mean, come on, my name is Winter. I wouldn't say it's funny, per se, but it's unusual and when I explain that I am Filipino to other Filipinos, it makes sense to them on why I was named Winter.  It may not make sense to other people, but to Filipinos it does. It is the tendency of Filipino parents to name their children unusual and sometimes corny names. There is no real explanation to it, they just do.

Some Filipino names that I have come across in my lifetime:

Sunshine
Valentine
Heart
Cookie
ChaCha
Boy-Boy
Johniver


A Filipino priest once told me that one strategy to naming your Filipino child a Filipino name - because there is a strategy - is to  take the first 3 letters of the mothers name and the first 3 letters of the fathers name, and put them together to make your child's name.

So... my future child would be Win-aus. or if it were switched around it would be Aus-win. Kind of sounds Germanic to me... like a concentration camp. Ausschwitz. 

Okay, nevermind. I think I will be declining that strategy to name my child.

A part of me wants to name my future child a Filipino name so that it knows its heritage, even if it's only by their name. Nothing corny though. Just a pretty Filipino word that will link them to their culture, something that I think that it kind of is important and interesting to know that.

Now that I'm older, I wish that I knew more about my culture, I wish I could speak the language, and I wish I knew more of my History to pass on to my future children, but I don't. I do, however,  strive to hold on to what culture I do know and learn more.  How much less will my future children know or identify with! I mean, I have a cousin who's half Filipino, and he doesn't even like Filipino Food! That just boggles my mind! Boggles it!  How can you not like Filipino food when you're half Filipino? I mean, a lot of it is not good for you or is weird (i.e. chocolate meat) but still.. it's hella good food. So, I'm determined to pass on what culture I can to my future kids, have them at least try Filipino food or something. Whether I'll name them some non-corny Filipino name, we shall see.

Anyways, I don't know why I'm talking about naming kids I don't have. Agghh..

3 comments:

  1. Weirdest name that I've come across wasn't even Filipino:

    Some lady named her kid La-a (meant to sound like La-dash-ah)

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  2. Hahaha ...I've heard about that one before. well, it was "La-ia ... so La-Dash-e-a. lol

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  3. Conjugation of parents' names was popular, but nowadays, I'm not so sure. Talking to those of my generation, young parents now give their kids Western names. My own kids have Welsh names. Why? Coz I like how unique they are when compared to other kids his age.

    It would be odd to use the original Filipno names, the ones from precolonial times. The famous ones are Lakandula, Humabon, Lapu-lapu, Kudarat. What they mean in modern language, no idea. We lost too much in the past centuries.

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