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Mixed Armenian - WHAT???

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Posted 13 May 2000 - 09:47 PM

Ok...let me introduce myself, my name is Olivier, and first off, you guys and gals will think "This guy isn't Armenian!", well, that's half true, see people, I'm Chinese-Armenian, that's right, half and half. My mother being Armenian and holding the name Abdelahad...AGAIN you guys will think "WELL, SHE AIN'T ARMENIAN EITHER!". As many of your families have sadly experienced, my mothers father was a Armenian living in Turkey, and as result of the revolution, was adopted by and Arab family to protect him and his sister and mother (his father and brother were killed). So, there you go...my father also shares his experiences of being a victim of a crude and harsh revolution. Anyways, me, a single child, holds two very different nationalities, which is why I wanted to post this message, is there anybody who is of a really diverse background and if any HOPEFULLY...any other Chinese Armenians..cause I have never met or heard of another.. thanks a lot!!

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Posted 14 May 2000 - 03:56 PM

Barev Urban Tiger!
I am sure that there are Chinese-Armenians out there. I myself am Half Armenian half Irish American. I have cousins who are half Armenian half Filipino, so it is very likely that there are half Armenian, half Chinese out there. It is very interesting how there are many half Armenians who come on to this website.Keep in touch!

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Posted 14 May 2000 - 06:22 PM

thanks a lot for the encouragment! I't's interesting to see how much the world today is becoming so heterogenous and diverse. Unfortunatly there are many out there who tend to stay closed minded upon these things. I mean, I met this one chinese person on an armenian chat line (in the desperation to find an asian-armenian!) and the person thought that I was totally lying about how I'm half and half!!! I mean, it was to the point that this person stated that they've never seen or heard of it, therefore it cannot exist!!! How hard headed can someone be??!!?!

Hope to hear from you again, and hopefully even more of you!!!!!

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Posted 15 May 2000 - 06:06 PM

Hi Urban Tiger!
Welcome to the "Club of the half-Armenians"!!!
I am as bad as you are: I am Armenian-Romanian
probably we, the mixed ones, are going to make a change!
Take care.

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Posted 19 May 2000 - 08:04 PM

I have this feeling that we are in a historical period which will determine the future of Armenia and the shape of it's people.
I am myself mixed, Armenian - French Canadian. I need to express myself. It's very nice to be open-minded, share culture and mix. But arn't the Armenians mixing too much? Hear me up. The best way to keep a culture alive and the pride of a nation in a childs education is to have both parents from the same culture. I'm not saying it's imposible otherwise it's just easier. Let me take an example I use quite often. Let's say I got married with a woman of another mix, Spanish - German; my children will then be 1/4 Arm, Span, Germ, Can! Won't they be confused? They won't want to make a choice and therefore loose their identity and concequently be a factor to the lost of all these cultures. What I'm saying is that if Armenians (don't forget we're only 7 M) continue this way, there will not be the same pride anymore (and think also of extinction! Let's say in 500-1000 years. We're 3000 yrs old!), you understand?
Keep in mind I am a mix also! Fortunaltely, I have grown to be a 100% Armenian by heart and I want my descendants in 4, 5 or 6 genarations later to be pure Armenians. Can I be sure that this will be so? No, but I can contribute by reinstauring the tradition of Armenian marriage, beacause I am in charge now.
We think too much of our own lives, love is a great thing but add the "same-culture" factor to it and you have a perfect couple. When we're a mix we have TWO options : keep one of both cultures alive or loose them both forever.
With love, Raffi.

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Posted 20 May 2000 - 06:20 AM

I think it depends on the way we're raised. it's not just our ethnic back ground.
My mom is not an Armenian ethnicly at all!!
But before I even was born she learnt the Armenian language and how to write and read!
She gave up her own culture,language and religion to raise me as a pure Armenian!
I don't consider myself a Romanian at all.
I just know that my mom is and that's it.
I will marry an Armenian that's for sure.
So why should my children choose??
They will be Armenians and nothing else!!
It's your heart not just your blood that determines everything!!!!

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Posted 20 May 2000 - 08:37 AM

Nvard, I think I'm falling in love here...

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Posted 20 May 2000 - 10:13 PM

It's Nature and Nurture, guys!

I agree that it's how you are raised.. but I don't agree that it has to be one way or another.. growing up with two or more cultures is the most beautiful thing.. take the best of all worlds.. I am 100% Armenian by blood, but having lived in 3 different countries throughout my life, and interacting with the culture at those countries as well as with the Armenians living in those countries has made me realize that if you feel confident on who you are as a human being first, and then add your ethnicities as jewelry that adorns your spirit, then you will evolve not only as a human being yourself, but it will be your legacy to your children.

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Posted 21 May 2000 - 01:54 AM

Yesterday my colleague asked me "Is it true that you Armenians don't get married with non-Armenians? Why all this racism?", and she's half-Spanish, half-French and half-Lebanese; I asked her "What do you consider yourself?Lebanese, French or Spanish", the poor girl didn't know what to answer me back. Even if I fall head over heals in love with a non-armenian, I will never EVER marry him (I won't even date him) for the sake of my culture, my family and my people.If we, Armenian women get married with non-armenians, no matter how hard we try we can never make our children 100% Armenians, first of all, they will never have an Armenian family name!!!Besides, how can I share the joy of listening Harout Pamboukjian's love songs with my other half if he's not Armenian!?!

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Posted 21 May 2000 - 07:52 AM

Dear Proud

I think that is very sad that you would give up possible happiness for yourself with a non-Armenian because of tradition and clannishness. There is no guarantee that even if you married an Armenian that your children would maintain Armenian ways, especially if you are living outside of Armenia. I am half Odar, and I am way more Armenian than some of my "pure" Armenian cousins. As for liking Armenian music, there are many odars that love Armenian food, music, traditions, so I don't see why you couldn't listen to Harout Pamboukjian.

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Posted 21 May 2000 - 05:20 PM

Well Raffi, I hate to sound like the older wiser person, but I think you see things more idealistically because of your age. Love is a transnational sort of thing. I would much rather my "pure" Armenian cousin marry a Mexican, Greek or American, if that guy will make her happy. I would not want her to marry an Armenian out of a sense of duty to "preserving the race." Of course ideal would be for her to find an Armenian guy she loves.

As for me my girlfriend is Argentinian. I am not going to give her up just to preserve purity of race that I myself do not have. Now that there is an Armenia there is no danger of the Armenian race dying out. If I have kids I will make sure they learn Armenian, and are proud of their heritage.

I think you are wrong in saying that half-Armenians who are Armenian at heart are rare. I know dozens of half Armenians including cousins of mine who are half-Filipino/half Armenian and speak Armenian and even read and write! Look at yourself, me and Nvard, all of us are ges odars.

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Posted 22 May 2000 - 10:14 AM

Well, I guess Raffi gave you my reply Steve.
I just wanted to add something else:
The beauty in Harout Pamboukjian's songs is in its lyrics and not really the music, so how can you share the joy of listening to it with your loved one when he/she doesn't understand it the way an Armenian does!?!

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Posted 22 May 2000 - 05:10 PM

Dear Proud

Why not teach him/her Armenian! There is no reason why you can't. Also I do not understand the Arabic lyrics of Alabina(The Spanish of course I do) but I can enjoy and even feel them nevertheless. If an odar falls in love with you it is probably because you are Armenian, therefore why not introduce him to the culture and language? All I am saying is don't discount an odar guy just because you are scared that your children will lose their Armenian culture. It is all up to you, my mom made sure I learned Armenian and was aware of my culture, you would do the same I am sure. I really believe the future of Armenia lies with us "mixed Armenians" we bring in new ideas and can jumpstart a people that can be, at times, very traditional and narrow. My dad is an odar, and my mom couldn't have found a better husband, Armenian or otherwise!

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Posted 23 May 2000 - 10:28 PM

Wow, I never thought my post would gather so many replies!!!
Well from reading all your responses I believe that some of you might forsee the very aspect of being a person of if not two, amny cultures. The very special thing that excludes us from others (not to sound egotistical or "special") is that being part of two or more cultures lets us see the world in a whole new perspective. Having many cultures under your belt so to speak, allows you to understand where others are coming from and allows you to relate more to the world around you.
In response to RAFFI Y, I'm a bit surprised by your nationalistic logic of "keeping it real", solid, and pure. I do understand by what you mean, but I do feel that just because you're of two or more cultures, doesn't mean one of them is going to be excluded, unless you educate and nurture your family about their different cultures, roots, and heritages, there shouldn't be a problem. And about the two options that we have about keeping one or loosing both forever....Why not keep BOTH AND THRIVE FOREVER?!!?
In response to NVARD, I totally agree with you, my mother being armenian and being raised in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, was raised with certain french canadian culture norms and ways of life, it all depends upon how you're raised!
All in all, I see the world both fortunatly and unfortunatly becoming more and more of the same race and culture, basically the same society. As you read this, some culture's ideas are being transmitted and used by another, somewhere, the idea that chinese characters on clothing looks "cool" those of you who are familiar with the McWorld theory will understand, others, just look it up, it's really interesting. I mean, is it so special to exclude yourself and say I AM THIS AND I AM THAT!!??? That my friends is how racism starts, and how descrimination brews out of the extreme nationalistic ideaologies that some people have...look at the Americans! I mean, I was born there, and am now living in Canada. I can get dual citizenship, as in canadian-american, but not american-canadian, because Americans want you to stay pure and 100% U.S.A with no other responsibilities! Is that the kind of life you want your family to live? Knowing that even if they find True Love with another race and/or culture that they'll be reluctant to pursue it just because they've been raised to descriminate against who they date?

To prove my point I'll let you in on my personal life. Recently I broke up with Jewish girl, because of the very factors that I've brought up. Was it love? I don't know, but I cared very much for her and still do. Anyways her being Jewish, and me not, posed certain obstacles but we got through them, what I didn't know was that her parents were so nationalistic and proud of their culture that they prohibited her to date and even hang out with non jews. The fact that when I once called and the caller I.D of my mom's last name Abdelahad showed up, made them hit the roof, I was forced to literaly hide from her parents and pretty much all her friends and family... I finally broke up with her because I couldn't deal with the fact that her parents were racist towards me and didn't give a crap about what kind of person I was to start with...does that show what I'm talking about? I'll let you all decide!

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Posted 24 May 2000 - 07:13 PM

On Monday I watched Armenian weekly TV and Ragib Zarokulu, a Turkish Human Rights Leader was being interviewed. At the end of the interview, he said, talking about the Armenian community of Montreal that : "Armenians have kept their culture in a very nice way. And the most important is that they did this in a society (western) where you are forced to loose your identity." Don't you feel good after hearing such a thing? I had a moment of extreme pride after hearing this.
Steve, you're a funny man.
[QUOTE]If I have kids I will make sure they learn Armenian, and are proud of their heritage.
Do you really expect your children to acquire Armenian culture and the language when they'll be only 1/4 Armenian in Western society? To actually be in the culture you have to be surrounded by people from that culture, right? You think you can bring him in an Armenian environement? I had to go to Armenian school to learn proper armenian (writing, reading, culture etc.). Do you really expect a wife to give up her own culture? Think about it. Trust me brother, it is very much possible for you to find an ideal Armenian woman, make a little effort.
Oliver, you think that if I marry with an Indian (as an example) that my descendants will remember about their Armenian grand grand father? Quite hard to believe. I mean it's your choice man! Or you feel that mixing is okay or you want your descendants to be Armenians, Chinese, Irish or Roumainan. Yes I am quite nationalistic but very far from being a racist! My best friends are Tunisian, Chinese, Moroccan and Haitian and we share and live with culture differences. Yes I do discriminate but only when it comes to my personal future. When I choose a girl for a serious relationship, her being Armenian is much better (by the way I have a date with a pretty Armenian girl this week-end, wish me luck). The Jewish example is quite believable, I know what you're saying. But bro! Live with it! There are millions of girls! If I knew that my relationship with a girl would cause some problems I just don't start anything.
By the way guys, I think I know why you feel this way. I think it is because you are not too much with Armenians (family, friends, work), am I right? I mean, it's natural!
With a lot of love and resoect to you all!

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Posted 24 May 2000 - 08:17 PM

Dear Raffi jan

I really like you, you seem like such a good person, who is sincere. But I am afraid you are wrong on this one, well somewhat. Of course it will be easier to raise my kids Armenians if I marry an Armenian girl, but I don't think it will be impossible with an odar girl. I do have some Armenian friends and am very close with my Armenian side of the family. I also live in an area with many Armenians, including tv, radio, etc. My girlfriend is very interested in Middle-eastern culture in general and Armenian in particular. She has studied Persian, Arabic and Armenian dance, and is very open to learning the language. I am far from being on the road to marriage, but I am not going to give her up just because she is odar. If we marry and have children they will be bicultural, or even tricultural ,as I am. I think it is very possible in this new millenium as there is new vehicles to maintaining cultural identities, here is one we are using right now! I guess I am not as Armenian as you. Dialoguing on this website has revealed that to me. I am even now interested in learning about my Irish and Native American heritage. I plan on going to a Pow Wow this weekend, and I think I can qualify officially as a Native American, Im not sure of the percentage by U.S. law. I think this makes life interesting. I totally hear you, there are so many children of Odar/Armenian marriages that know nothing of the greatness of Armenian culture, it is so sad. Many times though it is because their parents both Armenian an odar wanted their children to fit into the mainstream of wherever they are living. I think things are changing so much, particularly in Canada and the U.S with the emphasis on diversity rather than a melting pot. Good luck on your date, inshallah vor lav gelni ko hamar! Ko unger Steve

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Posted 24 May 2000 - 08:29 PM

Dear Raffi

I really find you to be a sincere, likable person. However I must say so are wrong on this one. I admit that it is often true that Armenian/odar marriages result in children whose knowledge of things Armenian is limited to baklava and stuffed grape leaves. How sad that they are so ignorant of their rich culture. However I don't think it always has to be that way. It is harder, but if both persons are committed to it, the children can be raised thorough bi or even tri cultural. People told my mom that she was not going to be able to raise her children as Armenians if she married some guy from Knoxville Tennessee, and she sure proved them wrong. Not only do I speak Armenian, but she made sure I learned farsi, this was despite some conflicts from my dad. How much easier is it if the odar loves Armenian culture and is committed to raising children biculturally. Inshallah vor ko "date" lav gelni, lav thughiyes, lav akhchik gu jares, hay te odar, inshallah vor shaat uragh gelnes ira het. Ko "gijh" unger, Steve!

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Posted 24 May 2000 - 08:32 PM

Raffi I wrote two replies because I thought I had deleted the first! Neroghustsun, bayts me kich darperen, lav henz et, hajokhustsun! Steve

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Posted 24 May 2000 - 09:24 PM

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Posted 25 May 2000 - 09:17 PM


ok, given that it may be hard to keep traditions and language and heritage up within your futur family, being that you are half armenian and half whatever. I understand by what you say and mean, but I find you're options and choices to be pretty restraining and small. I mean, who says that I can't have a multilingual family, hell, I have mix friends who speak both their native language and english and french, I mean, they did it, why not me, and many people out there?
When I do start looking for that ideal woman in my life, no I do not expect her to get rid of her culture and beliefs and whatnot, instead, I want to embrace them and learn from them and create more of a international awarness within my family that way unwanted stereotypes and views will be abolished, since my children and myself will be exposed to a a different view on life in general instead of the same norms and perspectives over and over again.
In response to your comment about finding that ideal Armenian wife if I should so look for. I don't think I can do that, because what about mu chinese side, in your logic, that means I have a responsibility and commitment to my chinese culture aswell. From what you say...am I suppose to lay down a certain criteria when descriminating between my two ethnicities when choosing my own personal futur with my future wife? I mean, come on!
But it's true, very true that I am not totally surrounded by Armenians, but let me tell you, this message board has somewhat allowed me to interact with more armenians! THANKS GUYS! So, "naturally" as you say, I'm not a pro on the topic. (Hope your date was a success!!!!)
I see that a lot of you are really narrowing down your options in life as to the kind of life you want to have. You mix armenians out there are really keen on leaving alltogether your other ethnicities and cultures because you feel that being Armenian is MORE Important and perhaps BETTER then the other ethnicities that you are a part of. Doesn't that sound a bit racist? Racism in defined as the beleif that one is superior to another based upon color of skin, ethnicity, nationality, etc...I understand that you guys are very proud about being Armenian, SO AM I! But proud to the extent that you want to rid yourselfs of the other ethnicities because they don't compare to what being Armenian is all about!?!?!!? That's like disaproving the marriage of your parents, the fact that their marriage was not pure, the fact that they come from different places, countries, ethnicities, it's as if you guys regret and feel guilty that you are a part of another ethnicity. RAFFI Y stated:
"Fortunaltely, I have grown to be a 100% Armenian by heart and I want my descendants in 4, 5 or 6 genarations later to be pure Armenians"
I mean, what's wrong with you're other french canadian half?? what made you decide to overlook french canadian culture and heritage?
In response to farsisteve@aol.com, I totally agree with you once again, about keeping a bicultural and even tricultural family, it opens so many doors, it opens your eyes for one thing to the world! And Go to the Pow Wow! they're so cool! I have Mohawk friends living at the reserve outside Montreal, who invited me, and I've been hooked since, I really connect with these people, they're so solid about family and values. They are in some ways if not as strong as the Armenians, more, they survived the onslaught of europeans, yet they don't even have their own country, wait they do! CANADA...The early french and english pretty much forced them off the land to live within their rules...anyways, I didn't mean to go off on a tangent..
Keep the mind, body, and soul strong!!!

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