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Baby Naming Rules/Tips

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#1 Laney


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Posted 04 February 2019 - 04:48 PM

What are some rules/tips you have (personally or in general) when it comes to naming a child?



My rules personally:

1. Gender specific names strongly preferred.  I have gotten a lot of flack for this one, but I cringe at masculine names and surnames for girls (James, Elliot, Maxwell, George, Charlie, Wyatt, Aubrey, Mason, Quinn, Sloan/Sloane, Avery, Sawyer, Payton/Peyton, Tyler/Taylor/Tanner, Parker, Spencer, Addison/Madison).  More so if they're respelled to "feminize" them.


As for "unisex" names, I almost always prefer them for boys, but there are a few that I don't mind for girls: Sasha, Erin, Meredith, Jules (as a nickname for Julia or Juliana/Julianna), Ariel (prefer Arielle).  Kelly, Dana, Shannon, and Robin are okay too, but they feel fresher on the boys' side.


2. No names that people give to their pets like Fifi or Coco, brand names, cars, drugs, food/drinks, titles, or words as names (especially something like Danger or Maverick).


3. Nothing like Adolf, Fidel, Judas, or Lucifer.  Too strongly associated with evil people/figures. 


4. No names obviously tied to pop culture, particularly made up ones like Maeby (too close to "maybe"), Renesmee, or Khaleesi.  I could never picture an actual adult with those names. 


5. Most names ending in the -lyn or -lee sounds, or trendy names are a no-no.  I don't find names like Olivia, Emma, Benjamin, or Jacob trendy btw.  Those are classic names that are just very popular.


6. No "kre8tive" spellings, pretty much anything respelled with Y's (unless it's an international variant.  Some Polish and Russian names are spelled with Y's), or unnecessary letters or punctuation.  I am fine with minor spelling variations like Catherine/Katherine or Victor/Viktor.  Also, no pronunciations that don't make sense phonetically.


7. Names must age well.  Braelyn (or any spelling of it), Jaelyn/Jaylin/Jaylen, Paisley, Brooklyn, Rainbow/Reignbeau, Rocket, Chance, Blade, Rowdy, and Boomer sound silly for an adult.


8.  No Paris, London, Egypt/Cairo, China, Phoenix, Bristol, Trenton, Camden, Dallas, Boston, Alaska, Bronx, etc...  A lot of place names give off the impression that you're trying too hard to be hip.  But I like Florence, Geneva, Alexandria, Georgia, Aurora, Odessa, and Siena (I prefer the Sienna spelling).





1. Avoid using stage names as given names.  Let your kids choose them for themselves when they're playing pretend or when they grow up and decide to get  jobs in the entertainment industry such as acting, music, dance, modeling, fashion, or comedy.


2. Be careful with names that are hard to live up to like Aristotle or Mozart.  If you must use them, it's best to stick them in the middle or use them as nicknames.  Or use a variation.


3. Beware of unfortunate initials.


4. Avoid anything that's unreasonably long or contains numbers or special characters, or may cause embarrassment for the child.


5. Don't give siblings rhyming names or names that are too match-y, especially twins, triplets, and other multiples.  They are individuals too and they need to have their own identities.  Samuel and Stella sound great together, but Holly and Hailey/Haley are too close.


6. Consider whether or not a name's meaning is important to you.

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#2 Marvelous_Things


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Posted 12 February 2019 - 06:07 PM

I generally agree with you overall, particularly on gender-specific and trendy names. I don't like traditionally masculine names or surnames on girls (for the most part. I have a few exceptions). I also really hate names with kr8tyve spellings. Rather than butcher the spelling of your child's name in order for them to be "unique," try choosing a more unusual name or variant of a name you like. Also, I agree with a lot of popular names not aging well. Like you, I have a hard time imagining an adult Braelyn. However, I wonder if people said that in the 80s about names like Britney and Ashley? Just a thought.


I'm not as strict as you when it comes to word names, food names, etc. But, I think it should be within reason. For example, I wouldn't think twice about a girl named Brie, but Mozzarella is just silly. I actually rather like names like Maverick, Archer, etc. With titles, it depends on the title. I have no problem with a kid named Duke or Prince, but Princess is just silly and sounds immature. With pop culture names, I think it depends on the name.  I agree that it shouldn't be something that will be dated in a few years. I'm generally okay with most place names, especially if the place is important to you).


For me, the biggest thing is that a name mean something, and have some sort of history behind it. That's why I cringe at made-up names like Braelyn. I think people should more than just what a name sounds like when picking a name for their child. Of course you should like the sound of your child's name, but it ideally should also have some connection to something that's important to you, be it a relative or ancestor, a meaning that you like (such as Abigail meaning joy or Lucius meaning light), even a historical person or fictional character that you admire or a name with religious significance if the parents are religious. 


I guess my parents are partially to blame for me being like this. My name is Victoria Elizabeth. Victoria was my great-grandmother's middle name, and both names are so steeped in history. They also have strong meanings (Victoria meaning victory and Elizabeth being a Biblical name meaning "oath of God"). I guess because of all this, I think everybody should have names with history and meaning.

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