Is It Wrong to Give Your Kid an Extraordinary Name?

26 Apr

Hello My Name Is... (Image by Alan O’Rourke of used under CC 2.0 via)


Every coupled friend I have here in Germany is, as of this year, a parent. And looking upon the names bestowed upon the new generation, I must say I like them all. Or at least, I don’t hate any of them. This is impressive when considering that, if my partner and I ever want to get into a fight, we simply start discussing names we would hypothetically pick for a child. Just give us five minutes and soon we’ll be shouting, “Bo-ring!” “Flaky!” “Hideous!”

And then we run up against the unanswerable question: Is it harder to have a mundane (a.k.a. boring) name or an unusual (a.k.a. weird) name?

While I enjoy the sound of my own name—as many if not most people do—I haven’t enjoyed seeing Emily end up in the top ten of the most popular U.S. baby names for the past three decades. Emily was the first name a sociologist in Freakonomics came up with when asked to list “typical white girl names” in the U.S. One hot summer in Upstate New York, I worked in a room with five other Emilys, all my age. One friend had so many Emilys in his life that he added permanent descriptors to differentiate us. (I was “Home Emily.”) Matt Groening was definitely on to something when he listed meeting-another-kid-with-your-name as one of childhood’s greatest traumas.

This is why I see the appeal of extraordinary names. After all, the whole point of giving a child their own name—as opposed to, say, calling them Person or Daughter No. 1—is to distinguish them from others. To have them, and not four other people, look up when you call them. In my years as a school teacher, I had a much easier time remembering Xenia, Letitia and Suma than Tom, Jim and Kate. I’m also grateful to parents who opt to avoid the sound-combinations that happen to be trending, reducing the likelihood of my having to remember which student is Julie and which is Julia, or whether the boy in front of me is Leon, Leo, or Leonard. I regularly confuse Kristen Stewart and Kristin Scott Thomas, but I’ll never forget Quvenzhané Wallis till the day I die.

Black Americans are renowned for frequently giving their children names that sound vaguely African with modern flourishes, from Baratunde and Beyoncé to Kwame and Malia. I spent a good deal of my childhood on Long Island and in Baltimore where I had classmates and friends named Chiwanna, LaTaesha, Zeeyaré, and Teyonté. South African comedian Trevor Noah has poked fun at how very not African such names sound where he comes from, but the attempt to reconstruct cultural ties, however inaccurate, is perhaps most understandable in the context of those whose ancestors were violently removed from their culture:



Looking down on extraordinary names can have xenophobic undertones. After all, the pre-1960s model of blending into middle class America resulted in immigrants named Wei-Li and Helmut swiftly transforming into Winnie and Herbert. An insistence that it’s cruel to name your child something unusual suggests something wrong with diversity or being a minority.

“That kid is gonna get teased so bad!” is the usual response to an extraordinary name. But wouldn’t it be better to teach your child how to react to schoolyard teasing with self-confidence and empowerment rather than avoid anything that might make them remarkable? Studies show the Boy Named Sue Effect is real. That is, my friends Lucrezia, Baldur and Bronwyn are more likely to have strong and sturdy personalities than my friends Matt, Matt and Matt.

As one psychologist explained in The New York Times:

Researchers have studied men with cross-gender names like Leslie. They haven’t found anything negative — no psychological or social problems — or any correlations with either masculinity or effeminacy. But they have found one major positive factor: a better sense of self-control. It’s not that you fight more, but that you learn how to let stuff roll off your back.

Then again, some endeavors to be different do seem less defensible than others. As noted before, a study in 2010 showed that teachers here in Germany are more likely to give lower grades and presume unruly behavior of kids named Cindy, Mandy or Kevin because they are assumed to come from anti-intellectual, anti-social homes. These names are common among children born in the Eighties and Nineties in the former East Germany where Hollywood had a strong influence, Kevin having boomed right after the international success of Home Alone. Smashing stereotypes about the people from behind the Iron Curtain is admirable, but destigmatizing Macauley Culkin feels less necessary.

And what about the potential for sounding pretentious? German punk singer Nina Hagen named her daughter Cosma Shiva after having allegedly seen a UFO while pregnant. The most compelling argument against picking a name from a distant culture I’ve heard comes from a fellow Long Islander with an Indian first name and a Jewish surname given by her Jewish dad and mother whose parents hail from Chennai:

I don’t think it’s offensive when a white couple reaches around the world for a name. I think it’s tacky. If you want to name your kid something foreign and exotic, then get to know someone foreign and exotic, and marry them. Otherwise, stick to what you know well. You’re trying to sound deep and yet your relationship to the culture isn’t deep. It’s shallow.

Not to immediately insult Dhani Harrison, but she has a point.

Having no cultural context for a name can be very problematic. What if the foreign name you’ve picked “just because it sounds nice” is widely known abroad as the name of a brutal dictator, infamous celebrity, or literary villain? If a WASPy American couple stumbled upon “Mohammad” or “Fidel” for the first time and decided to give it to their son just for the sound of it, they would be looked upon with a good deal of suspicion. In Amy Tan’s The Kitchen God’s Wife, a man returning home to China after a trip to the U.S. tricks his rival into taking on the name Judas when dealing with Western businessmen, promising him that it is the name of very well-known, powerful historical figure.

And controversy aside, phonetics often don’t translate easily across cultures. Not only are my favorite English names often butchered by German accents, but most of the German names that sound loveliest to me and my American family elicit horrified looks from my contemporaries in Berlin. (Apparently “Hannelore” is one of the ugliest names anyone could ever think of in Germany today.)

This proves, however, that it is often nothing more than a matter of taste.  One person’s tacky is another person’s terrific, and there is little we can do to change that.




205 Responses to “Is It Wrong to Give Your Kid an Extraordinary Name?”

  1. stalkingsarah April 30, 2015 at 3:45 am #

    As someone with a very ordinary, ridiculously common first name for my generation AND an extremely unusual, ridiculously, hyphenated long last name, I thought long and hard about what to name my child. The last name was a negotiation between me and my wife, and we decided together to give her last name — which, while not ridiculously long, is also unusual and rare.

    We thought long and hard about a first name, and picked something that is relatively simple, relatively common (actually slightly more common than I would have liked, but NO where near as common as my name was when I was born). We picked something that would identify him as Jewish, which was important to me. And we picked something a soft name, because we wanted a son whose name projected gentleness above toughness.

    (We also picked a name for that would sound good in German as well as English — but not so “society” would treat him well, but so I wouldn’t have to listen to his German family butcher it!)

    As it always happens, when you go through these kinds of moments in life, you form strong opinions about naming. For instance, I don’t think hyphenation is a good idea. While I appreciate the feminist and egalitarian intent behind my last name (which I love and will never change), it’s not a sustainable solution to naming conventions. Did I pass my last name on to my kid? No. Do I fiercely love my last name? Yes.

    I’ll confess that a friend of mine recently gave her kid a name that honored non-anglo family roots. And I absolutely judged her. Why make life hard for the kid, I lamented. Why set the child up for stuttering teachers at attendance time and potential discrimination at hiring time? Why not just find a name that would fit in?

    Later I realized how messed up that was. Perhaps it’s a result of being a first and second generation immigrant, perhaps it was white privilege, but man… why is it SO outrageous to demand that someone learn your name — how to spell it and how to say it?! In thinking on it, expecting someone to have an easy name (or demanding they take one on) is not that different from asking a black woman to relax her hair to be “more professional” or telling any woman that she’d do better if she just wore some lipstick once in a while. To paraphrase MLK, people should be judged by the content of their character, not by superficial characteristics.

  2. diana2261 May 6, 2015 at 5:38 am #

    I explored this topic for my dissertation research a few years ago and found that while people have very different ideas of what constitutes a “difficult” name, pretty much everybody wants their child’s name to stand out (though not too much — I built a whole chapter around the different ways my interviewees said “different, but not too different.”) Upper-middle-class white parents tended to see a “good” distinctive name as something with an easily discernible pedigree (also known as “a real name”); working-class and African-American parents were more likely to value the idea of their child’s getting a name that had been created specifically for them. People on both sides were disdainful of the other side’s choices, but everyone wanted their child to be “unique.” 🙂 This is a fascinating topic — and a propos of nothing, thank you for having such an awesome blog. I am always so excited when I see you’ve got a new post up!

  3. techwriter145 May 26, 2015 at 10:48 pm #

    I can understand that people want to go eccentric with their names but they shouldn’t go too extraordinary with names to make it difficult to pronounce. Even though they might make some errors with elementary or intermediate names (like my name which is Khalil), it’s best to keep it simple.

    • malikagreen June 23, 2015 at 10:16 am #

      Not trying to have a go and I see your point…..But then why should you avoid something just because it’s difficult?

      • techwriter145 June 23, 2015 at 7:49 pm #

        I know right. People shouldn’t be really judged by their names, giving them determination in the future, just because it’s unorthodox to the people who talk about it.

  4. Eli Hitler Razcon May 26, 2015 at 10:54 pm #

    You are an impostor. You are not in Germany. The people in Germany would know that Beyounce is a stage name.

  5. Marie May 26, 2015 at 11:24 pm #

    I think, sometimes, in naming we are really gathering a wish; hedging our hopes on an introduction to a world that evolves too quickly to be confined in a name. Lovely, thoughtful post on a subject that is as far reaching as it is intimate.

  6. Eli Hitler Razcon May 26, 2015 at 11:24 pm #

    In Europe, they don’t call themselves by their ethnicity and their nationality such as “African American.” I saw several movies made in Germany and they call black peoople black, they don’t say black German. I had a teacher who was born in London, she was black, didn’t call herself British nor English. She said she is black and she was born in England.

    • malikagreen June 23, 2015 at 10:20 am #

      I’m British and to me ‘African American’ is one of the most horrific things to call someone. Black is a skin colour and a descriptive term, just like blonde is. You wouldn’t call an American Irish heritage ‘Irish-American’. You’d just call them white. I mean, just because they’re black doesn’t mean they have any immediate connection to Africa. It’s bloody ridiculous.
      [I’m mixed race and if someone called me african American if be pissed because I’m not african or American thank you very much.]

      • arwynundomiel June 23, 2015 at 7:44 pm #

        I’m so happy someone actually came out and said this. You are absolutely right. I don’t understand the need to make simple adjectives “politically correct”.

      • Liz June 23, 2015 at 9:35 pm #

        Ha. Yes, I totally agree but as a white girl (note that I said “white”, not “caucasian” I’m terrified of calling someone “black” because we were always taught that it’s not PC. We’re starting to move to a place where it’s acceptable but it’s hard because some people prefer one and some prefer the other and you never know who is going to get offended by what.

      • malikagreen June 25, 2015 at 12:47 am #

        Some of my friends have said the same thing. As long as It’s not said I’m a derogatory or intentionally offensive tone then there shouldn’t be a problem.
        I think this works for all races, genders, ages, identity groups. Respect and embrace haha

      • Salad At Midnight June 25, 2015 at 2:21 am #

        Yes! Let’s hope we can get more people to agree with us over the years!

      • arwynundomiel June 25, 2015 at 7:47 pm #

        You nailed it, Liz. It’s become a bit ridiculous with all the PC stuff going on and you’re absolutely right about white people being overly concerned about how to refer to others. We’re taught to acknowledge every other ethnicity under the sun and celebrate them, but never our own. Can you imagine the brouhaha if someone suggested we have a “White Pride” day celebrating that culture?

  7. kennynines May 26, 2015 at 11:34 pm #

    “This proves, however, that it is often nothing more than a matter of taste. One person’s tacky is another person’s terrific, and there is little we can do to change that.” Exactly. I think kids need to stand out because of their actions and not their names, which are things in which they were in no way involved.

  8. aelliott92 May 26, 2015 at 11:53 pm #

    Reblogged this on aislingelliott.

  9. giasuniverse May 27, 2015 at 12:09 am #

    My real name is pretty popular where I come from, and although I am grateful that it is an “international” name-not causing me problems while living abroad, I would have preferred a unique name. Where I’d be the only one in my class growing up.
    We gave our children very unique names (after seriously thinking about it), and so far nor we and neither them have encountered any negative responses-on the contrary!
    And you are right unique names are easier to remember 🙂 Thank you for posting your thoughts on the subject. Gia

  10. jeremiahshiaka May 27, 2015 at 12:32 am #

    Reblogged this on DJ J.BOY ENTERTAINMENT.

  11. Morye' Jay May 27, 2015 at 12:38 am #

    This was amazing honestly. My birth name is Ajahneik (ah-jah-neek) and sadly when my mom named ne the doctor told her i might not ever learn to spell my name. Greatfully i did by the age of 3 and my namr has mad me a very proud person who doenst take crap from people. Due to consitant name slurs and mess ups i was able to speak up and say “no that isn’t my name ,” or “no you cannot nick name me.” I always felt as though parents should give their children names required full use of the tongue its imporatant that everyone you come across remembers your name in my opinion. So the weird the better.

    • stalkingsarah May 27, 2015 at 8:16 pm #

      Word! My first name is ridiculously common for my generation, but my last name… is shared with only one other person in the world. You’d better believe that no one who learns it ever forgets it!

      • Morye' Jay May 27, 2015 at 10:57 pm #

        Thats the amazing thing about having a different name its never forgotten 😬😬😬

  12. arthurferrandez May 27, 2015 at 1:25 am #


  13. Silvera May 27, 2015 at 2:00 am #

    Reblogged this on Silvera Paper and commented:
    It’s a very nice and interesting topic

  14. vnp1210 May 27, 2015 at 2:21 am #

    Great post! As an Indian American about to have my first baby, I’ve gone through no less than 10 million names. My husband’s family is from a different part of India than mine (different languages, foods) and we have very different names in our respective micro-cultures even though we are both Indian. We are very particular about choosing a name that will be Indian but also easy to pronounce for the Americans our kid will grow up with (although I strongly believe that people can and should pronounce you name correctly, you just have to teach them!) It is a weird balance between conforming and sticking to tradition.

  15. Barb Knowles May 27, 2015 at 2:26 am #

    Interesting post. I immediately thought of my daughter Keren. We’re of mostly-Irish ancestry, and although her name is from the Old Testament (we had a specific reason for choosing this name), Keren sounds Irish. What I didn’t count on was the fact that I could never find anything with her name on it in a store. And she complained about that for years.
    Then while I was reading your post, I thought about my name. I remember in 2nd grade, out of 25-30 kids, 5 of us were Barbara. SO common. Now it’s an old name. Like I needed something else to make me feel old haha. I enjoyed this article. Thanks!

  16. bluerosegirl08 May 27, 2015 at 2:52 am #

    i love this! My father’s family has a tradition that the eldest child gets the chance to choose a middle name for themselves at the age of thirteen. I wasn’t given a middle at birth because of it but my dad’s big brother was Paul John Wintter plus our last name before he added Wolfgang at thirteen. My dad and his brothers were raised Catholic can you tell? I also have a great uncle whose middle name is Knight though whether it was given or chosen nobody seems quite sure. I named myself after my dad’s mom but for the year between 12 and 13 I kicked around all kinds of names, naming a baby is hard but naming yourself isn’t easy either.

  17. hartymcscientist May 27, 2015 at 3:04 am #

    My son’s called Moses and I wanted to call him Fred

  18. Tana Daily Telegraph May 27, 2015 at 3:15 am #

    Reblogged this on Tana Daily Telegraph and commented:
    Thank you for sharing your views on this issue. This post, indeed, has shed light on how different cultures name their children. In my culture, naming a child is a matter that adheres to a predetermined traditional structure, save for the first name which may take some variation. Of course inter-marriages also do introduce significant variations depending on the agreement of couples although not so extensively – ‘globalization of naming patterns’ kind of synergy I would say. Interesting; isn’t it?

  19. ordonexlive May 27, 2015 at 3:18 am #

    Reblogged this on ordonexlive.

  20. My Camera, My Friend May 27, 2015 at 3:21 am #

    When I was little, I could never even get a pencil with my name on it. Then, just a few years ago, my name exploded in popularity and it seemed like every other TV show introduced a character who shared it. Awkward. I’ve never been fond of my name, but I can only be so hard on my parents. Selecting an appropriate name that isn’t too hard to spell or pronounce, is hard to make fun of, and isn’t so common that there will always be at least three other kids with that name everywhere the kid goes has to be an overwhelming task.

  21. mvijohnsonave May 27, 2015 at 3:22 am #

    At a young age a name that stands out can give the child a complex from being teased children are cruel

    • stalkingsarah May 27, 2015 at 8:19 pm #

      Ah, but I think that children will always find a way to be cruel and to tease; I think even giving your child a “safe” name does not protect them. Kids are so creative…

  22. Crissy Dean May 27, 2015 at 4:13 am #

    I really enjoyed reading your post here. Congrats on being Freshly Pressed. You deserve it!
    I hope you’ll come check out my new post and leave me a comment with your thoughts.
    Keep up the good work!

  23. thebeautifulopportunity May 27, 2015 at 4:15 am #

    And what about coming up with online names? As a foster mom who blogs, coming up with nicknames for the foster kids is a challenge. (We cannot use real names for privacy purposes.) So foster parents come up with online monikers for our kids like Watchful, Joyful, Sassy, and Silent One.

    When devising a new name, I avoid regular names so people won’t think that I am using the child’s real name. Usually, I think of a character trait that will help readers imagine the child as well as a trait that has a positive meaning or aspiration I have for the child.

  24. mkerr2015 May 27, 2015 at 4:17 am #

    maybe i dont know noo maybe

  25. reema7362 May 27, 2015 at 5:00 am #

    Reblogged this on reema7362's Blog.

  26. J May 27, 2015 at 5:23 am #

    Hello! I am 17, so still in high school, and I like to think I have what you would consider an extraordinary name: it’s hyphenated and nine letters long.

    Except it’s not extraordinary in Korean. In fact, I have met several people, both male and female, with the same name as me, back in Korea, so I don’t even get that benefit of it being unique. In America, however, I’ve never met anyone with a name like mine. In fact, all my friends who were given Korean names always ask to be called names like Julia or Claire, after their favorite actresses or movie characters.

    I used to really resent my parents for not providing me with a standard American name. And sometimes I still do. It’s annoying to constantly have people butcher my name, and ask me how to pronounce it. It get’s annoying and embarrassing to have to remind people that they haven’t been pronouncing my name correctly. During standardized testing, the proctor always has to wait for me to finish bubbling in my long ass name.

    I don’t want to name my something boring, but I also don’t want them to have to struggle with having a name like mine. A name is part of your identity and with people constantly butchering your name, it makes you feel really, really small. So, bottom line? I like names like Tate, or Scotland, or Landon. They are unique, but people will also know how to pronounce them 🙂

  27. mumof4boys1girl May 27, 2015 at 5:32 am #

    i have to admit when some of my friends have told me what their newborn childs name is ive thought OMG that poor kid though others i have felt like they are great names,
    its so hard to name a child it honestly is, i have 5 children and their names are Bryce, Jason, Deacan, Jade and Domonic they are all nomal names though i like to change the spelling around a bit,

  28. Mat Atahari May 27, 2015 at 5:41 am #

    I like this piece. I think that this assertion of feeling intrigued by names has got a little bit to do with a person’s skin color. I mean try imagining the name Obama with a face like Clinton’s… LOL. I suppose in a normal situation, unusual names are quite normal 🙂

  29. beautywithbeatrice May 27, 2015 at 5:59 am #

    My name is Beatrice… which is quite the old-fashioned name for a twenty year old (though it has gotten more popular recently due to the Divergent series). However, I absolutely love it. I get compliments on it all the time, and I think it helps people to better remember me individually!

  30. Cody May 27, 2015 at 6:10 am #

    I love extraordinary names for children. My son has one himself and he certainly lives up to it by being an extraordinary child with extraordinary interests like science, geology & astronomy!

  31. Runaway Nuns and Leprechauns May 27, 2015 at 6:58 am #

    Interesting! Is it wrong to give “extraordinary names”…???… First let me just say that referring to “them” as extraordinary is quite clever and fitting. Ok, now to answer the question: No two humans are 100% alike so why shouldn’t we allow extraordinary/unique names?
    Great question! Kudos

  32. xheena1088 May 27, 2015 at 7:08 am #

    for me giving an extraordinary name to your child makes him or her very unique..i have two lovely daughters and i prepared for their names.i preferred to name them with beautiful meanings…like Kennice Breindell which means Beautiful Blessing..and Karsten Belle which means Annointed Beautiful..Others may wonder of it but they seemed to like it much. plus their nicknames are also out of the content…COUNTESS AND HIGHNESS another perplexity on their mind why did i name them such these…

    but i think there is nothing wrong with naming them uniquely…if their names are extraordinary then it implies that they are extraodinary people too..kind of deçlaring extraordinary to yuo kids..😁

  33. neffy93 May 27, 2015 at 7:31 am #

    I wrote a blog post about my unusual name a couple of days ago. I am the only one of me in the world if you take my African first name and German surname together. My name is so common in the Igbo tribe but in the UK it is rare and I love it being different and I love it’s meaning and spelling and history. As a kid I hated not being able to get things with my name on but that was the only downside. My mum chose lots of English names for me but she said when I was born I didn’t look like any if them so I just got my traditional name. With my brother she waited to see him before even thinking about it and he was just baby for weeks as she couldn’t make up her mind.

  34. gayatrilavanya May 27, 2015 at 7:34 am #

    It’s ok to pick up a unique name but I think it is equally important to ensure that the name doesn’t become your child’s problem…. He/She should be able to respect his/her name because if he/she is not comfortable with it than this uniqueness might turn costly

  35. Gilbert A.R May 27, 2015 at 9:41 am #

    Reblogged this on positivethoughtslife and commented:

  36. Jorge Bernal May 27, 2015 at 10:40 am #

    Reblogged this on WordPress Trunk.

  37. closetmirrors May 27, 2015 at 10:49 am #

    Great post!!

  38. thaz1 May 27, 2015 at 10:59 am #

    Reblogged this on Tasma Dalton.

  39. SinisterSushi May 27, 2015 at 11:28 am #

    Reblogged this on M I S H A P S.

  40. Good read. I went for unusual and old school….turned out with my youngest so dis everyone else lol

  41. talkingthroughlife May 27, 2015 at 11:53 am #

    I don’t have any children and don’t plan on doing, but this does make me think of naming the characters in the book I’m writing. Finding a name that fitted their background and didn’t have any meanings I wasn’t aware of (lots of research) as well as fitting their personality was very difficult. Yet it’s a book, I have a lot of time to change the name if necessary. I can’t imagine how difficult naming a child would be.

  42. mommyseuss May 27, 2015 at 3:02 pm #

    My parents gave me a unique name and I love it. I was named after Sigourney Weaver, but they kinda put their own twist to it. Although it annoys the crap out of me when people pronounce it wrong or think my actual last name is Weaver, I would rather have a unique name than a super common one. Especially growing up with a best friend named Heather who was also named something like “Heather from geometry class” to distinguish her from the many other Heathers in high school.
    I believe you should give your child a unique name, but not to the point where someone would look at their name and be like, “Ummmm what?”
    My son’s name is a known name, but not too common to where you hear it all the time.

  43. Unathi K. May 27, 2015 at 3:38 pm #

    My Xhosa name, Unathi, is quite common in South Africa, my country of birth and residence. However, whenever someone says it, I always assume they’re talking to me. I guess I’ve made it my own over the years but I’ve always secretly wished it was less popular. My second name though, Eureka, is less popular among black people in my country so I tell myself I’m the only one there is. Also, because of its origin from Archimedes’ famous exclamation when he discovered how to measure the volume of water, I’ve always liked it. I assumed it meant I was a great discovery to my parents too.

  44. negócios May 27, 2015 at 3:50 pm #

    Arte final

  45. mcbarlow5 May 27, 2015 at 4:09 pm #

    My son’s adoption wasn’t final until he was two, so we kept his given name of Bersain. As you say, hopefully it will develop character…Great post!

  46. segmation May 27, 2015 at 4:11 pm #

    I gave my daughters really easy names, Heather and Brooke. I thought by them having easy names this was a way to make life a little easier on them and I think it worked. Thanks for your enlightening post!

  47. hopefulminimalist May 27, 2015 at 4:28 pm #

    I have a Gaelic last name that I got teased for plenty growing up. There were plenty of nicknames given to me and my brother based on our last name. I used to be bothered by it, but for the most part I learned to ignore the teasing. However, it was really interesting when I met someone my age as a kid who was from Ireland. By recognizing my last name and actually pronouncing it correctly, unlike my American counterparts who butchered it, we became great friends. My family always had a strong Irish heritage that my father made sure to pass onto my brother and I. I find it interesting how my last name gave me a connection to someone I never thought I would have. However, when you say that the greatest trauma a child can receive is meeting someone with the same name, I’d have to disagree. On top of my unusual last name, I also got an unusual first name. I remember becoming so excited when I met another kid with the same name.

  48. fpreece May 27, 2015 at 5:17 pm #

    I was recently lambasted by “friends” for calling out an unusual name at the school where I teach…I made it clear that I was not calling the name or the person attached to it bad or weird, or anything like that…but some people find it necessary to be so PC that you can’t even say “wow that’s quite a name” without being considered an a**hole. I think unique names are fun, even if they are frustrating to educators everywhere…I appreciated this article and will be sharing it!

  49. justermily May 27, 2015 at 6:31 pm #

    I thoroughly enjoyed this post. My name is also Emily so I can definitely relate. I have always liked my name but hated whenever I would meet someone named Emily. Coincidentally, I have two friends named Emily. My friend Emily and I were called “The Emilys” in high school. It is upsetting when you are grouped into a category and you aren’t looked at as an individual.

    It has been difficult being in school with multiple Emilys, and I sometimes wish I would have went by a nickname when I was younger that stuck with me. I envy people with unique names, although I like the simplicity and elegance of mine.

  50. peeweeshue May 27, 2015 at 6:52 pm #

    I love this post because I have a 2 month old baby GIRL that I chose to name Houston. From the moment I chose her name the jokes and questions rolled in ” why are you naming her Houston ” “don’t you know Houstons a BOY name?” “Are you really naming her Houston?” And the infamous saying “Houston we have a problem”. What no one understood nor understands is that SHE is MY child therefore her name is MY choice and I owe no one and explanation. I LOVE my daughters name because 1. It is NOT a Boys name. It is ALWAYS used as a LAST name to both genders. 2. Houston as a FIRST name is UNIQUE and SHE is the ONLY human with the FIRST name Houston. I searched and searched people with the first name Houston, looked in baby name books and it was not even an option. My daughter I unique and special to me and that’s what I wanted for her. I LOVE the fact that when people hear her name they will be intrigued to know whether it’s a boy or girl, her last name that was placed wrong on paper and why she’s named Houston. Her name will deprecate her from the rest and make people want to know her and not judge her by reading her name on a piece of paper.

  51. teilzeitanarchistin May 27, 2015 at 7:40 pm #

    Prejudice against people called Kevin or Chantalle is indeed very common in Germany.
    I am German myself. I have a short, unisex, very international first name, Kim, and it is never misspelled or misspronounced. It is, however, not that common in Germany. My middle name is something longer, more feminine and more traditional which is quite common. My last name is of Hebrew origin and it is constantly misspelled and misspronounced, but I would’nt want to drop it.

  52. rameshwariramkrishnan May 27, 2015 at 7:57 pm #

    I guess search for an extraordinary name is more like a step towards trying to stand out, to make a statement, to announce the arrival in style. Of course some get sound amazing while some get stuck with rotten choices that were made. At the end of the day these are perceptions or a fad that soon die out to give rise to another. 🙂

  53. thewriterofyourlife May 27, 2015 at 8:15 pm #

    hey i like what you’re doing so keep it going because there is noyone else like you and you are so fab in all of your ways because what u just posted is like rainbows to my eyes and music to my ears so i just want u to know how you just gave me that touch of light so shine on!!

  54. lahcenbenkerkiche May 27, 2015 at 8:22 pm #

    Reblogged this on Golden Argan Oil.

  55. tylanarianist May 27, 2015 at 10:29 pm #

    Reblogged this on tylanarianist.

  56. willbrio May 28, 2015 at 12:08 am #

    Some names are only odd to certain cultures. And some normal names would be butchered and mocked elsewhere. A few transcends borders. I am just thankful my dad didn’t go with his first choice for me: Darth Vader.

  57. BasicallyBeyondBasic May 28, 2015 at 2:55 am #

    I know an African American girl named Syncere and I absolutely love her name.

  58. asalewis May 28, 2015 at 4:16 am #

    Dhani Harrison’s point is very intriguing. Yet like you said it is just a matter of taste. You can’t tell someone they can or can’t name their child a certain name just because the child might get picked on when they grow up or because it may be too exotic. It’s all opinion-based. I personally would like to see more parents give their children more interesting names though. Not to say any of the common names are bad, but I just to like to meet people who’s names are distinct. For example my name is Asa, and every time I introduce myself to someone I always get “That’s a cool name!” or “What does that name mean/come from?” It creates a level of intrigue about me that people wouldn’t have otherwise.

  59. EnviroSolutions May 28, 2015 at 4:26 am #

    This is quite a conversation starter, I have a difficult name or should I say different from the norm, I love it and and very proud of my parents for putting much efforts into naming me. Great piece.

  60. O.J. May 28, 2015 at 4:27 am #

    My birth name originally came from one of my grandparents–I happen to love it! I look it up in a baby name book. Its meaning is ‘the looked-for one’ or ‘the expected one’.

  61. Talesfrom3lhell May 28, 2015 at 4:40 am #

    I can see the point you’re making, but I disagree, and instead think that those who have names so distant and exotic often feel embarrassed, or, coming from experience, annoyed at having to go over the spelling or the meaning to every new person that they’re introduced to.

    Besides, it’s been proven that job candidates with different names aren’t chosen for interviews as often, but those with “classic” or “normal” names are.

  62. thegirlwiththepolkadotpurse May 28, 2015 at 5:01 am #

    Reblogged this on thegirlwiththepolkadotpurse.

  63. abdislambox May 28, 2015 at 6:38 am #

    Reblogged this on slambox92.

  64. @cizzos May 28, 2015 at 6:59 am #

    Wrong or not, i do not care. That only make me panic

  65. BellyBytes May 28, 2015 at 7:57 am #

    Reblogged this on Nappy Tales and Me and commented:
    Naming a child is always a difficult task because you want a name that is unique,easily remembered and easy to spell. It should also be something you can live with. I don’t know if it’s try but a sister in law staying in the States told me that her neighbour once mentioned that she didn’t know how to address a new Indian neighbour because his name was Gopi. Said in the American drawl it came out as Go Pee which is definitely hard to say without smirking. When asked to address him by his second name, she said it was even worse! His surname was Dixit which came out as Dick Shit !

    With so many people having global connections the trend now is to have names that are easily pronounced by foreign tongues hence Rahul , Raman, Ajay, Lena, Maya, Rita are always popular. Names like Siddharth or Nikhil which can be abbreviated to Sid and Nik are acceptable. Recently there has been a spate of names like Vivan and Aryan , Reina and Anaaya. Equally popular are names from Indian mythology particularly of the minor characters whose names are real tongue-twisters.

    Recently I was asked to suggest potential names for my soon to be born grandchildren and very politely declined the honour because I find it a great responsibility- to saddle the child with a name that he will be able to live up to and live with all his life.

    So when I saw this post, I felt it was something I just had to share because unlike what Shakespeare said, a rose by any other name doesn’t smell as sweet and there’s lots riding in a name!

  66. elinlundevall May 28, 2015 at 11:36 am #

    With A different name it becomes personal, it means that the Child Will be rememberd and isn’t it great to have A special name?

  67. onecarwood May 28, 2015 at 2:05 pm #

    You don’t have any kids.

  68. Kreig303 May 28, 2015 at 2:57 pm #

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    As my first name is “Kreig” I have always had mixer feelings on this subject.

  69. bikerchick57 May 28, 2015 at 3:47 pm #

    When unusual names are given with some thought (while sober) due to it’s personal meaning, I am not opposed. However, when two celebrities call their child North West, I cringe. That child may not want for much, but what amount of taunting and teasing will she have to bear during her childhood? Unusual names are okay when they are given responsibly and keeping the emotional health of their child in mind. I was taunted by other children for being too tall, too skinny, having an overbite, my last name, etc. I thank my parents for naming me “Mary” and not something else that would have added fuel to the fire.

  70. amingor May 28, 2015 at 4:58 pm #

    Reblogged this on Amingor's Weblog.

  71. Kithama May 28, 2015 at 5:21 pm #

    i find it very okay

  72. iamabhi64 May 28, 2015 at 6:47 pm #

    Your blog is ozm

  73. Deborah May 28, 2015 at 11:50 pm #

    Great post! We’re a multicultural family – French, Swiss, Irish. Finding names that sound right across the board was a bit tricky. Irish names I love – Conor and Fionn – mean asshole in French. The beautiful German girl’s name Merle (blackbird, in French), is too easily turned into “merde”…
    I’m a teacher in France, and studies have shown the Kevin effect is strong here, too. So is the Oussama effect and the Chanel effect… A girl called Mathilde or Hortense is a zillion times more likely to do well in life than Cindy or Jessica. So we decided on “reasonable”, “plain” names. The only little fantasy is our third boy’s middle name: Aramis. He is the third musketeer 😉

  74. liminalchameleon May 29, 2015 at 1:18 am #

    My parents couldn’t exactly agree on a name, and the one they did choose – a very common name, mind you – had people teasing me until I was ten and moved to a different local school. I have a first name, three middle names, and a hyphenated last name totalling 33 letters. I use my middle name on a daily basis now, but having all those names on all my forms makes applying for jobs tedious and confuses employers.

    That aside, I can be sure no one has my ensemble of names, so I have at least that going for me!

  75. motivaciontalentohumano May 29, 2015 at 5:13 am #

    Like 😉

  76. isabellesudron May 29, 2015 at 5:21 am #

    Meeting another kid with your name definitely was a childhood trauma! The next worse was having a name too difficult for the substitute teachers to pronounce. My best friends name is Mohua and every registration was a nightmare for her!

  77. iamtrendiiboutique May 29, 2015 at 5:51 am #

    My first name is really weird (1981). I decided to give my kid a simple name in result of my experiences. Her name is London

  78. harshwardhanhv86 May 29, 2015 at 1:29 pm #


  79. thisdarkbluemind May 29, 2015 at 1:54 pm #

    I am constantly surrounded by Claire’s which is why I am very reluctant to give up my slightly unusual last name should the wedding bells dare to toll… and because of this I want to name any future children something different, maybe even character building. So when they hear their name they will briefly get a strong feeling of who they are in the crowd of everyone else. They are (insert strange name).

    But at the same time I have friends with unusual names and they tire of mispronunciation, misspelling and the humour that they are always met with.

    Perhaps you always want what you don’t have?

  80. cramsekaran May 29, 2015 at 2:53 pm #

    Yep! My husband is from India so our kids have long last names. Since I’m half italian, we went with short first names – Primo and Geo. And I have to say, they are memorable and “cool”. And easy. We thought a little different is good, but not as different as Apple, lol. Nice read!

  81. toneeshelton May 29, 2015 at 5:25 pm #

    Reblogged this on bettawatchyatone.

  82. alyciadianne May 29, 2015 at 6:28 pm #

    ““That kid is gonna get teased so bad!” is the usual response to an extraordinary name. But wouldn’t it be better to teach your child how to react to schoolyard teasing with self-confidence and empowerment rather than avoid anything that might make them remarkable?”
    This, I absolutely love this. My boyfriend and I just named our child Padme, we get very mixed reviews. We wanted something to be a special as she is. But everyone seems to say “oh that poor kid is going to have so much trouble in school. No one is going to know how to say her name.” Now, my name is Alycia…I know many many other Alycia’s…some spelled differently, some spelled the same..all the same name. Growing up and even to this day only one person in my life has ever said my name correctly. This didn’t effect my life negatively, and I love my name, as I’m hoping my daughter will love hers.
    I love this post. All of that being said, of course I’m not bashing those who like the more classic names, I love them as well. I just think that parents who choose those names less heard and known tend to get a lot of flak for their choices.
    Just as you stated “one person’s tacky is another person’s terrific”, we don’t all have to agree. Every person should be their own person regardless of name.

  83. lhvi340 May 29, 2015 at 7:11 pm #

    Reblogged this on lbonbylhwmedia.

  84. Electrikkiss May 29, 2015 at 10:11 pm #

    I think I like something in-between, not so common that five kids in the classroom can answer to the same name, but not so strange that people question your sanity as a parent!

  85. Gallery May 30, 2015 at 4:52 am #

    NEW names of kids are really required this days, since lot of people today are with same names at schools, workplaces etc. Old fashioned same name for all kids of a community kill the flavour of human naming.

  86. jujaatanasowa May 30, 2015 at 8:09 am #

    Reblogged this on rebellious mind.

  87. Phillip Kun May 30, 2015 at 11:01 am #

    Reblogged this on a little of phillip.

  88. cezarcic May 30, 2015 at 1:33 pm #

    Stupid americans

  89. bloggerstalex May 30, 2015 at 4:29 pm #

    No because it makes them stand out in a way

  90. ruthalfred May 30, 2015 at 7:18 pm #

    Reblogged this on ibukunolusegun.

  91. iamtrendiiboutique May 30, 2015 at 9:13 pm #

    So i will just put it out there. My first name is Quinneidrah. As an adult i go by Quinn. Let that weird name marinate on ya minds.

  92. The Purple Rose Blog May 30, 2015 at 10:45 pm #

    This was quite thought-provoking !

  93. thepoliticallyawkwardteenager May 31, 2015 at 12:00 am #

    As someone who grew up with a very unique name in the US (which is very commonly heard in Mexico), I can relate to this a lot and after all these years, I came to finally love my name.

  94. thepoliticallyawkwardteenager May 31, 2015 at 12:00 am #

    Reblogged this on the_politically_awkward_teenager.

  95. C.S. Wilde May 31, 2015 at 12:17 am #

    Well said!

  96. ouidepuis1 May 31, 2015 at 2:56 am #

    My name starts with a J, and I’m Dutch. You would think the whole world would miss-pronounce it except for the Dutch (and Germans). Nothing was ever more untrue. The entire 20 years I lived in the Netherlands, I spent correcting people. Now that I live in Australia everybody knows how to pronounce my name. They hear my accent, assume I’m foreign, and spell or say J.
    The amount of times people have told me “it’s only a name”… It isn’t. It’s the laziness from the people on the other side who cannot be bothered to try, to listen carefully, to read properly.
    No one but the parents have a right to choose their kids’ names. Whether that is Facebookson (after the boy in Brazil) or Shoqondrae (I just made that up).

  97. Dr. Geyser May 31, 2015 at 3:16 am #

    Hello my name is Dr. Nolan Geyser, and I too have an extraordinary name, but only because of positioning. Traditionally, I think that my first name is typically used as a last name, but thanks to Nolan Ryan, a pitcher, this situation was altered in time for my entrance into the world of beings. Obviously, because I have a somewhat special name, I have a vested interest in promoting it. Perhaps this is a too-telling psychological insight on my part, but it seems appropriate in this situation.

    An equilibrium between Nature and Nurture, the name configures the latter. Ordinary people probably benefit the most from extraordinary names, but the difficulties with such a statement quickly become apparent. What happens when the extraordinary name transforms the oridinary individual before ordinariness is recognized?

    Also, where a name has been inappropriately given, either because of false reasoning or blatant misappropriation, there is always the possibility of acquiring extraordinary nicknames. And for that, one needs extraordinary friends.

  98. Daniela Pozzobon May 31, 2015 at 4:00 am #

    Reblogged this on danni's words and commented:
    This is an AWESOME post about names. Does having a unique name makes you unique? Or are regular names just alright and your personality doesn’t have anything to do with your name?

    Something to think about!

  99. noralynn6 May 31, 2015 at 7:06 am #

    No because what ever name you give them that’s the name there meant to have

  100. noralynn6 May 31, 2015 at 7:08 am #

    What ever name a child get that is there name before there even born

  101. Binita May 31, 2015 at 9:07 am #


    I absolutely enjoyed reading this post about names. You see, I am a mother of 3 who wanted unique names for all of them for several reasons. I have written a blog post on the same subject. Once I publish it, I can email you. I would appreciate your comments on it as I am new to blogging and eagerly await readers’ comments. Plus, this post of yours gave me ideas for follow-ups on mine. 🙂

  102. deszy_diamond May 31, 2015 at 10:34 am #

    Reblogged this on Deszy_Diamond Blogs.

  103. proxguy May 31, 2015 at 1:39 pm #

    Reblogged this on proxguy.

  104. newsforyou9 May 31, 2015 at 2:17 pm #

    What is the name then?!

  105. jfreels1 May 31, 2015 at 3:27 pm #

    Reblogged this on jfreels1.

  106. jfreels1 May 31, 2015 at 3:27 pm #

    Loved your article !

  107. Gabi McRyan May 31, 2015 at 4:40 pm #

    I agree with the idea of extraordinary names for kids.. but once you want to give your kid this name, you should think if your country is ready for this. The country I live in is , for instance, too conservative, for this to happen.
    However, it is quite better nowadays, I remember how some kids were bullied in school because of their extraordinary names. And they were bullied not only school by other kids.. also adults used to be very mean .
    Another fact is, that not only kids were treated badly. Parents, who gave their kid extraordinary name were consider crazy, abnormal….
    So no matter that you said those kids are mentaly stronger later… it is REALY important to know.. how your country will react to that.

  108. Martin C. Furman May 31, 2015 at 5:08 pm #

    Years ago, when I was at school in my home country, there were always at least two other kids with the same first name. Somehow however, I never really thought about it as something traumatic – maybe because mine was not the only name with multiple owners in our class. When I moved to the UK, I realised it was much less common, yet still very well known, which meant I never had any trouble with people remembering it.

    It’s a slightly different story with my last name. There are at least three languages where one could say the name comes from, each of them associated with a different meaning, each time pronounced slightly differently. Instead of trying to teach everyone how to pronounce it the way my parents would, I decided to go with a flow and simply introduce myself in the UK the way British people would pronounce it if they saw it written somewhere. It isn’t too patriotic of me, I know, but it does save a fair bit of trouble especially in this highly globalised world where you are more than likely going to end up dealing with people from all over the world.

    On a different note, I have recently been looking into names from a slightly different perspective – that of creative writing. Coming up with a distinct, easily pronounceable, unique and if possible internationally acceptable name for a character, that on top of everything has a hidden meaning, is a completely different beast to beat, yet somehow similar rules apply.

  109. mehakguptagrover May 31, 2015 at 6:41 pm #

    Searching and keeping unique names z what evry parent loves. Though even I tried to keep a unique name for my doll n as I kept her name it became super common….loved reading the blog!!

  110. kaylakaylaniylah May 31, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

    That video was deep

  111. teganlynne June 1, 2015 at 1:40 am #

    There’s only one person in the world with my name in full. Tegan Nappari. Middle name Lynne, but not necessary. I can bet not one blogger can pronounce my name correctly. (Tee-ghin Nuh-pear-ee) without my added pronunciation. Tho my name may or may not be considered “ghetto” as that rhyme stated, no one else on the planet has my name. Definitely extraordinary

  112. badcrisp June 1, 2015 at 1:57 pm #

    My son Galaphrax-Highgrave resents me for some reason, insisting that his name is “Paul” or some similar nonsense. How can I stop him denying his true name? I hope this is just a phase.

  113. Chelsey Ignacio June 1, 2015 at 5:52 pm #

    Reblogged this on CHELSEYKEITH.

  114. Sapphire Fire June 1, 2015 at 10:43 pm #

    Reblogged this on Dreaming Echo.

  115. i8there4irun June 2, 2015 at 7:10 pm #

    Well, try growing up with a hillbilly name…synonymous with a husband stealing harlot in a very famous country song. Jolene. Go ahead, sing it if you have to. It was trying as a child, and people can still get on my nerves today- but I do agree with the “strong” names build character comment. You just can’t be a shrinking violet when you have to constantly answer to an odd or infamous name.

  116. forestlerainel1994 June 2, 2015 at 9:31 pm #

    Having a unique name this speaks volumes to me thank you

  117. Lily June 2, 2015 at 10:53 pm #

    This was a really good read! For most of my school life, I was the only person in my year to have my name (real name: Lisa… which I’ve always thought as relatively ordinary). One day, another Lisa had transferred to our high school and she became part of our friendship circle – which caused a lot of confusion for everyone! We ended up adopting nicknames so we knew which one of us people were addressing!

    That was with only one same-name person. So I can only imagine how confusing it could get with more!

    For me personally, I like a good unusual “unique” name. But as you said, it’s really down to personal preference.

  118. datsozguevara June 3, 2015 at 2:42 am #

    Reblogged this on datsozguevara.

  119. dcheeseelisabeth June 3, 2015 at 7:40 am #

    Great points

  120. Sumit Suri June 3, 2015 at 4:00 pm #

    Great and unique…..

  121. SeptemberGirl June 4, 2015 at 3:00 am #

    I had a common name growing up and would have LOVED a more unique first name.
    When naming our daughter we picked a name that suited her both as a child and a name that would take her into the corporate world one day.

  122. Sunsetxavenue June 4, 2015 at 2:14 pm #

    Love this!!!

  123. arwynundomiel June 4, 2015 at 9:36 pm #

    There’s a difference between having an unusual name and having an utterly unique one. Hollywood couples are infamous for naming their children things like Pilot Inspektor and Moxie Crimfighter. I do agree with you that it isn’t the greatest feeling when you meet someone else with YOUR name, but trying to prevent this from ever happening by various means can be its own evil.

  124. Godivaworld June 4, 2015 at 9:43 pm #

    Chuckled at this…..ALOUD in my office….by myself! I have what some would consider an “odd” name although I would beg to differ or shall I say prefer “unique” which happens to be Anitrice (sounds like Uh-knee-Tris). As you can imagine my name is the topic of discussion quite often not to mention mispronunciations which I always find comical. However extraordinary names is a totally different story from those I would consider “unique” so much so upon seeing them I often pause to attempt to decipher said name (my fave activity is going through the graduation programs and reading names) lol! Don’t judge me! Great post by the way!

  125. heyletsthink June 4, 2015 at 11:06 pm #

    That was really an interesting topic to read…👍😀..when it comes to names I really hope people don’t give the ones that are damn hard to pronounce… But I love those which are not you said once heard you never actually forget them…

  126. nayahtxarie June 5, 2015 at 7:23 pm #

    I have an unusual name (Nayaht) and nobody seems to pronounce it well, its pronounced Na-yacht like the boat, yacht. Its not nugget people!!!

  127. Brian Qeta June 6, 2015 at 10:18 pm #

    Reblogged this on bqeta.

  128. June 7, 2015 at 7:20 pm #

    Thank you
    Fantastic blog
    Good luck

  129. Nathan June 8, 2015 at 4:27 am #

    Very interesting read. In my opinion, it depends in the situation. My teacher named her son with a really crazy name (that I can not even recall) because she didn’t want to relate him with her students.

  130. Sandeep June 8, 2015 at 10:35 am #

    Nice post…and working with 5 other Emily! hehe…you must have enjoyed it! You can even have a look at my blog 🙂

  131. zikaolofin June 10, 2015 at 6:40 pm #

    Ok. I really loved this article. My boy’s name is Dawn, given with a lot of purpose because for me he was a first in many ways. When my brother who lives in the UK told me that everyone he mentioned the name Dawn to said it was feminine, guess what I told him? I said, “well this is a new dawn where boys also bear the name Dawn. Tell that to your friends.”
    Names to me are significant and should be given with care and forethought. Thank you for your post.

  132. keepyoureyeonthedonut June 13, 2015 at 7:39 pm #

    Hey, I love this post (especially as someone with a “weird name) but I don’t really understand why naming your child after a literary villain would be such a horrible thing. This is probably the case with many names, not just “weird” or “foreign” ones. Some famous villains are called Tom, Bill, Jack or Elle too after all. I wouldn’t compare naming someone after a fictional character with naming someone after cruel dictators or murderers. I agree that you should do your research before doing, wearing, etc. anything from a different culture but I don’t quite see the horror of having the same name as the antagonist from a book or film.

  133. Jawrsh June 16, 2015 at 12:49 am #

    My wife and I talk about baby names every so often, and the one thing that we always arrive at is the fact that it needs to mean something. Otherwise, what is in that name?

    My mother named me Joshua because her sister had picked the name first and made the classic mistake of saying it out loud. Now I have a story to share for the rest of my life, and hers. All names deserve that sort of history. As far as cultural context goes – if I don’t fully understand a culture, what possible business do I have judging anything related to it?

  134. samtumblin1 June 16, 2015 at 4:45 am #

    Reblogged this on sam tumblin favorite artists and commented:
    Good Question!

  135. sparrowstclaire June 18, 2015 at 6:21 am #

    This is a favourite topic of mine. Being almost 40 and single, my chances of getting to name a baby get slimmer by the day (so I have resorted to using twenty years of my favourite unusual baby names on my pets. *le sigh*). Is Sparrow my real name? No, but my actual full name is even more uncommon/rare so I picked a pseudonym that reflected that.

    I love an unusual name. (What’s wrong with Hannelore btw? I quite like it.) I think it gives a child a sense of positive personal identity and frankly, if kids cannot find a way to tease you about your name, then they’ll find another way to do it. From my own experience, I have never met another person with my name except for once when I was younger and I recall feeling strange about it and slightly possessive as well.

    Great post! I very much enjoyed it.

  136. fyrependragon June 18, 2015 at 10:44 pm #

    Reblogged this on fyrependragon and commented:
    I’ve thought about both ends of the spectrum on this… What do ya’ll think? Mundane? Or Spellthatplease?



  137. ktktktb June 20, 2015 at 5:30 am #

    Reblogged this on KBoundsLife.

  138. aleahb65 June 21, 2015 at 12:09 am #

    Great Blog!

  139. Becky June 21, 2015 at 11:33 pm #

    Well written and incredibly intersting. I am one of MANY Rebecca’s, but manage a slight independence with the nickname Becky. I appreciate the work you put into the article!

  140. malikagreen June 23, 2015 at 10:15 am #

    Having an unusual name (for my culture), I have only met one other person with my name, and so never went through the trauma of sharing it with anyone haha. Until adulthood, I was blissfully unaware how common my name was in other countries, but it doesn’t bother me.***

    As for adopting a name from another culture, I think it’s fine exhausted we adopt so many other things from international cultues. We are approaching globalisation and I guess names are a part of that. Even out language is a hybrid of different cultures, and so an overlap is inevitable….. I do agree though that names from a culture that is not your should be chosen wisely. Do the research, nothing offensive, no deities, or villains.

    I enjoy having an unusual name, with all it’s pros and cons, all the ‘say that again’s and ‘where’s that from’s. I think it’s whatever you’re used to that you think it appropriate. I plan on giving my child an unusual name (I think it helps having a simple surname -Green-) and am excited for it.

    ***my name is Malika Leonie Green. Malika is Arabic for queen and I am half Jamaican half English, haha great mix***

  141. malikagreen June 23, 2015 at 10:22 am #

    Reblogged this on Discover The Wonders With Me and commented:
    Brilliant article, give it a read and a think

  142. Christian June 24, 2015 at 2:46 am #

    Well I’m American and my girlfriend is Spanish. So we were talking about names, like every serious couple, and for us it was more of a: trying to find a name that was good in both English (for when we visit my family and friends in the US) but wont be looked to differently in Spain. Girl: Mar (A common Catalan name [my girlfriend is Catalan] which means ocean or sea) and boy: we are still working that one out 😛

  143. DDRhoades June 24, 2015 at 8:32 pm #

    Reblogged this on Red Key and commented:
    I thought that this is particularly interesting topic given that many times those of us who are adopted have our names changed. Sometimes it is just the last name that is changed, but many times the whole name is changed from what the biological mother or parents named us. I wondered how you feel about having a name change. Are you open to that, or is it something you would be opposed to?


    • Emily Sullivan Sanford June 24, 2015 at 9:44 pm #

      Not at all. When it comes to one’s own name, I generally believe self-determination is key. There are probably some exceptions where it can be problematic, but for the most part not. What do you think? Thanks for the reblog!

  144. jasminerenshaw June 25, 2015 at 4:09 pm #

    I love this! My husband and I are not pregnant, yet have the same argument almost weekly. He wants plain, I want unique!

  145. sweetahmed7 (AKA*MaliK) June 28, 2015 at 1:56 pm #

    Reblogged this on akastarmalik and commented:

  146. MentalBloody July 3, 2015 at 8:48 pm #

    Reblogged this on Lauren – DUH Randomness..

  147. Arul July 22, 2015 at 10:54 pm #



  1. Why are #African #parents fond of giving their #children non-African names? | - June 8, 2015

    […] few weeks ago I watched the video on this article in which a lady passionately encouraged other women to be proud of their African sounding names, […]

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