What are the RULES Naming the Kids - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My wife and I are trying for our second child. One thing she wants to get out of the way before we even begin is the name.

My problem is she has all these rules for naming kids. It can't end in certain letters the same as first / second / last name. Can't be too like other names, can't be friends names, or friends kids names or from movies or Geeky things that I like. I've like lots of names, but most are shot down for some reason that sounds silly to me.

I admit it. I skipped social rules 101. I'm likely to tell someone Hi, that's an ugly shirt your wearing, or ask how much money they make or any other silly no-no. I'm just as likely to wear stripes plaid black socks and shorts on the same day. So I have to give her the benefit of the doubt, but I must know from other couples...

What are the rules for naming Children?
How do you decide when you can't agree?
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#2 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 03:40 PM
 
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My dh accused me of having way too many rules, too. And, as I recall, the word 'arbitrary' kept coming up.... lol

Some of my 'rules':
If you have a last name of 3 or more syllables, the first name should be kept short. (In a perfect world, it'd be one syllable.)

Alliteration is usually just too cute, and should be avoided for the most part.

Never end a first name with the sound that begins the last name-- this tends to sound muttery when pronounced, as though there's a swallowed letter in there somewhere.

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#3 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 03:48 PM
 
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i think everyone's rules are different.
here's some of ours.
no names of exes.
his last name is heavy on the letter "r" so no names with heavy r sounds. (like rafferty, which we both really liked, but it would just be too much)
since our daughter's name is highly unusual and quite feminine, any future daughters have to also be unusual and feminine.
i refuse to use pedestrian names, which works out well, since he doesn't like them either.
no names that have been used by family or friends in the last 20 or so years.
nothing with bad connotations like adolf or benito.
oh, almost forgot, nothing in the top 100, hell, the top 500. i don't want my kids being one of 5 with the same first name in their classes. that was so annoying for me.

after that, it just has to SOUND right, which can be a challenge since our kids will have a hypenated name with 14 letters!
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#4 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 04:44 PM
 
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What is a "pedestrian name"?
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#5 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 04:51 PM
 
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The only rules I had were no names of exes (my daughter's donor tried to name her after his exwife), no first names the same as any other family members but middle names are fine, and no popular names.

Little did I know at the time I picked "Aidan" that it would end up being so dang popular for last year and this year.
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#6 of 22 Old 07-17-2003, 07:25 PM
 
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Ours are pretty much he picks for males and I pick for females and the other has veto power.

Maybe someday I'll get a chance
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#7 of 22 Old 07-18-2003, 01:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This is great. I just showed this to my wife. Nice responses so far. Veto power sounds good, I think we've already had that. We got a book of 10,000 names. Amazingly it still is missing quite a few of the ones we were thinking about.

I like having the rules down because it makes deciding a lot easier. This name applies to all of our rules. Yes or No. Some more rules we've come up with...

1. The "Sounds OK yelling to Call them into the House" rule.
Example: Persephone where are you? -- Nope -- not sure why, but it's bad.

2. The "Must have a nice short common name"
Xavier -- nope - it's always Xavier, no short name.

alsoSarah: What's an example of Alliteration names? Just long names, or something else?


Elphaba: As khrisday said, What is a "pedestrian name"? I'm assuming it means a common name, but I'm not sure common for our generation, or current kids? Can you give some examples?
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#8 of 22 Old 07-18-2003, 02:15 AM
 
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Alliteration : Miss Melody Molly MacPherson

I say the both of you should sit down and agree on 10 rules to abide by. You each get to make a list of 10-15 names theat fit within the rules. you each get to veto, without reason, 3-5 of those names. No insulting in your vetos. just veto and be done with it. then take the remaining ones and you each take off 3-5 from your own list. come back together and discuss. is there one that you both like? if so you are done. if not you may need to take another round of no questions asked vetos. when you are down to about four names pick middle names and wait for the baby to introduce himself. that is what we did. we had it down to about 3 or four and couldn't decide. so we let her test drive them for about half an hour each and then decided because we were exhausted and refused to go to bed until outr daughter had stinking name. We ended up picking Ava which turned out to be this years "IT" name. great. oh well.

with my second dh decided and there was to be no discussion. even though I hated it. fortunately it really grew on me. And there is only one other personon the planet so far with her name. lilyka mae.

and madeline we just decided on. Should have thought about that one more.

Scream it out loud followed by "get your butt over here right now" and see how it sounds. for example "Melody Molly MacPherson get your butt over here right now!!!" (the more I say that name the less bad it sounds)

good luck.

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#9 of 22 Old 07-18-2003, 02:53 AM
 
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Good luck. I had a lot of the same rules. It was very hard to find names.
I wanted to veto Vladimir b/c I had a dog by that name as a little kids, but I just loved it anyway and I always wanted a slavic sounding name. I thought of Nikolai as a first name but DH vetoed it b/c my brother's name is Nicholas.

We had SUCH a hard time.

Ironically, we had so many girls names that if he was a girl he was going to have at least 2 middle names. :LOL
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#10 of 22 Old 07-18-2003, 03:32 AM
 
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Great thread!

With each child, it is harder and harder as one of my main rules is that sibling names must "go" together. Mark and Julie go together. Mark and Persephone don't. You have to be careful naming that first child as it then puts you in a certain "name genre".

Siblings should have either gender obvious names or gender neutral names - not a mix within the same family. Mark and Julie are obvious. Jordan and Kelly are neutral. Both examples ok so far. But I wouldn't name sisters Julie and Jordan (one obvious gender and one neutral). This does work a little better (different) with sisters - harder for a boy to have what is perceived to be a possible girl name if his brother has a name that is very manly.

You must like all possible nicknames as they will be used whether you like them or not. Don't name your daughter Brittany if you dislike the name Britt.

Consider the initials. We considered Bailey for a first name for our newly born third daughter. I wanted to use Ann as a middle name after my sister. Last name starts with a D. That won't work obviously.

Alliteration was something I wouldn't do either. Just means you have the same first and last initial. Some people like it. This is one of my weakest rules - not a big deal either way.

I adore middle names after people I love but feel quite strongly (just my two cents) that a child's first name should be their own. I think this because it seems to me that it is a lot to live up to - that your parents have high hopes that that child will be like the person they are named after. In this vein, I would not do John Smith Jr. or John Smith III.

I agree that the last letter of the first name can't be the same sound as the first letter of the last name - it does just all blend together.

First and last names should have different numbers of syllables to sound best. If your last name has three syllables, the first name should have one or two, but not three.

Just so you know your wife is not the only one with rules that seem weird to a husband, I will share my naming - well not rule but I tried and succeeded - plan. Our first daughter is Kenzie. Second daughter is Rylie. With the third child, I wanted a name that included an end of alphabet letter. kenZie, rYlie... My husband assured me I was certifiable but I liked Lexie for a girl or Owen for a boy. She is Lexie!

That reminded me of another one - don't use an old name for one child and a new name for another. By old and new I mean used as a first name starting many generations ago vs. first name that has just starting to be used. For example, Margaret and Catherine "go" together. Margaret and Lexie don't (for a variety of reasons - one formal and one not - as well as the old/new thing).

Good luck deciding!
Kirsten
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#11 of 22 Old 07-19-2003, 11:29 AM
 
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I am very fond of the book, "Beyond Jennifer and Jason, Madison and Montana" b/c it lumps the names by categories, not alphabetically. It also goes into quite a bit about the "rules", and has many of the more unusual names.

Good Luck
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#12 of 22 Old 07-24-2003, 11:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten

one of my main rules is that sibling names must "go" together. Mark and Julie go together. Mark and Persephone don't. You have to be careful naming that first child as it then puts you in a certain "name genre".
I agree! Other than that, my husband and I didn't have very many "rules". We both liked teh name Aiden even before I got pregnant. But I do agree with the other mom, it is a bummer that the name became so popular! My poor son is going to be one of 15 Aiden's when he starts first grade!

Next time I'll try harder to pick a name that isn't so popular.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#13 of 22 Old 07-24-2003, 11:41 PM
 
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My hubby's only rule was that if and when we ever had a boy, "Jupiter" would be in his name somewhere: Well, we had a son the second time around... we went with Skylar Jupiter Jones. He's either going to be an action hero or a porn star... we'll see what the stars have in store
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#14 of 22 Old 08-03-2003, 11:04 PM
 
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DH named Maria, I picked Carmen, his sister (I think?) orginally suggested Isabel - when dd1 (Maria) said she liked it, that was all it took for DH.

We didn't come up w/rules - he vetoed me in the same way your wife vetos you - arbitrarily IMO

As for initials, mine are now LARD so how's that? NICE. You can't control who a daughter will marry so you can try not to come up w/a bad combo of initials, but who knows what will happen to a girl's?

Also - I agree - gotta have it sound good being yelled from across the way. This lady in Chuck E Cheese of all places kept yelling "Justice! Get off of Freedom! That is enough! Freedom - do not hit Justice! Will you please leave each other alone!?!?!?" I am not joking. Blech. Good in theory, bad in practice.

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#15 of 22 Old 08-13-2003, 01:34 PM
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We didn't have rules we just haggled. My husband LOVES Suz-type names: Susie, Suzannah, Susan, Suzette. He claims it has nothing to do with his motorcycle (a Suzuki). I don't like these names but he said I could have carte blanche on the name if it was a boy. Since I had a pretty strong feeling it would be a boy I agreed. HA! It was a boy!

I just like names that make sense, you know? Even though I don't love Suzannah I was willing to go with it because dh always imagined his daughter with a Suz name. Since the baby was a boy we gave him my last name as a first name. His middle name is his grandfather's. If it was a girl the middle name would have been my mother's maiden name. I like to have a story behind the name, I guess, so even if it's John there's a reason it's John. In our case the name still ended up being unique but that wasn't why I picked it.

My dh's most common put down of names was "too soap opera".
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#16 of 22 Old 08-14-2003, 03:24 AM
 
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My DP would walk around the room and say how about "chair" or "paint" you name it he said it- But would he talk about normal names- no way! And then when he heard in Michigan you can wait up to a year to file the paper work- watch out- he wanted to wait the whole year He wouldn't talk about any name- at all- because he once told me he like Summer Moon and I laughed. I guess I hurt his feelings I was not tring to but I can't name my girl's middle name moon- just cant! So after our DD was born it was DP's father that found her name in a baby book- Rainey- an then found her middle name on the internet- Faye- so all the worring I did about a name it was not even found by us! Now that I have her and know her has Rainey- she could be nothing else- and it goes well with our "natural" way. I think people looke at her in her all cloth diaper and think- HIPPIE PARENTS WATCH OUT!!!!

And you know the name I wanted was Adria and DP didn't like it and when she was born I took one look at her and thought- nope she is not an Adria. So my advice is look at your baby first.

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#17 of 22 Old 09-02-2003, 03:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by TechnoDaddy
I admit it. I skipped social rules 101. I'm likely to tell someone Hi, that's an ugly shirt your wearing, or ask how much money they make or any other silly no-no. I'm just as likely to wear stripes plaid black socks and shorts on the same day.
I am exactly the same way socially.

I only have three rules.

1. I have to like the name. No, I have to love the name. It's a nice plus if my partner likes the name, too. I might reconsider if he really hated it.

2. The full name should sound good.

3. Don't try to be "cute" or funny. Your child will NOT appreciate it.

Quote:
Originally posted by mcimom
This lady in Chuck E Cheese of all places kept yelling "Justice! Get off of Freedom! That is enough! Freedom - do not hit Justice! Will you please leave each other alone!?!?!?"
:LOL

Quote:
Originally posted by crayon
My DP would walk around the room and say how about "chair" or "paint" you name it he said it- But would he talk about normal names- no way!
My partner is exactly the same way. The only suggestions I could get out of him were things like "Spork."

-Alice, SAHM to dd (2001) and ds (2004) each of whom was a homebirth.jpg, who each self-weaned at 4.5 years bfolderchild.gif, who both fambedsingle2.gif'd, who were bothcd.gif, and both: novaxnocirc.gif.   Also, gd.gif, and goorganic.jpg!

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#18 of 22 Old 09-02-2003, 04:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by khrisday
What is a "pedestrian name"?
WALKER!




Sorry.

*Snort*

OK. I'm fine now, really.

Only RULE is that you can't have a set of initials that spell an obvious teasing joke.

Our son has a hhhuuuugggggee moniker. We had little trouble picking it out (I think). I have two middle names (5 names total, counting my husband's last name), so there was a certain amount of precedent for a long name.

I also always like to have a name that is honoring someone inthe family (NOT a rule, but just a guideline ) We both liked it. That was easy.



BTW, the nickname for Xavier in spanish is Xavi -- say it like Chavi. Very common in spain.

Personally, I despise those baby name books. I like it when a name is passed through a family. Even if you don't like the history of the name, it links you to the past. I'm not totally thrilled with some of my genetic coding, but I've learned that nothing is black and white and accepting the past (ancestral past, too) makes for a rich life.

Good luck with the name.
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#19 of 22 Old 09-04-2003, 07:07 PM
 
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Here are some of my rules:

1) A girls name really should end in a consonant or a hard "a" sound. Polls show that in the business world, a soft "e" sound on a woman's name makes people think she's pretty nut not strong.
example: Jenny vs Jennifer Annie vs Anna

2) A girls' name can't sound like a stripper, if she's going to strip, she will have to come up with another name.

3) The name can't mean anything I don't like it to mean: I loved the name Morgana, but it has bad connotations. This goes for boys and girls names. I'm big on entymology and like to figure out what a name really means (Whitacker means acher of weat in Welsh, Media means to ponder - a form of the Greek Medea, a sorceress who helped Jason get the golden fleece, Mavis is the harbringer of spring in Scottish)
Our daughter's name translates to Champion of god/Defender of humanity (f), angel(m), chicken farmer (surname, no choice really), of course my name translates to Bitchy Stormcloud-Chicken farmer and hubby's to Crowned, God's General Chickenfarmer

4) Can't name the child for a family member, particularly DEAD family members. For dads wishing to pass on his name, but the wife's not too hot on the whole Jr, III, IV thing:
Dad's 1st name becomes son's middle and this only happens for the first son, so he can feel special.
Dad is Micheal Johnson XXX, his dad's name is Johnson YYY XXX and his son's name is Albert Michael XXX, etc.
The Kenedy's boys (JFK, RFK, TFK) all had their mother's maiden name (Fitzgerald) as their middle name.

5) The name has to allow the child to be the next billionaire industrialist. Jake will be cute now, but he will grow up and have everyone ask "is it short for Jacob or something". He will have to shrug, look down and say, no my father never wanted me to get into the buisiness world so he named me to be a burger flipper (no offense to burger flippers out there). A name like Alexis is short for Alenxandra already, but still a stand alone name (i.e. no one asks Alexis if it's short for something).
Donald Trump doesn't go by "Donnie" and Bill Clinton had the choice to be inagurated as Bill rather than William (but he was trying to seem common, he ran on the "I'm an outsider to Washington, just call me Bill" platform).

6) Change the speeling is OK, just don't let it get out of hand Raychell for Rachel is a little much, I think.

Oh and if you love the name Christopher but hate Chris as a nickname, then name him that and call him Tofer (Topher, the 2nd half of his name, who says it has to always be the first part of a name?)

My hubby and I agreed only only one name, that's how we knew we were having a girl. Our first choice for a boy's name was MAXIMILLION (and we both said it had to have million in it) an English variation of the Latin Maximus, meaning greatest. Our daugher was 3 days old before we had a name for her. Keep in mind that some children have very obvious personalities from the begining and the name you chose may not really fit. I tell most people to wait until after the birth to choose a name. You could have your heart set on Donatella (Itallian for given from god), but she somes out a Samantha (Arameic - the real language of Jesus, not Latin or Hebrew, as some may think - for listener of God)

Oh and keep in mind that in a propper monogram, the last initial goes in the middle and is the biggest one:
AH A, so you can have a first and middle names both start with the same letter (our daughter has A for 1st and middle, but we monogramed AHA and in fancy script it looks really good).
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#20 of 22 Old 09-06-2003, 07:57 PM
 
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Love this thread!

My own rules:

1) We have to like it and have no negative connotations with it (or at least none that can't be overcome)

2) It has to be more than just a name we like. It has to have some kind of symbolic meaning: named after a beloved relative, named for a character in a book, named after a person who was important to us.

I was named for my great grandmother; my brother was named for a Robert Browning poem and his middle name is for my father's favorite poet. My sister is named after an irish flower in tribuet to her grandfather, a well-known Irish folklorist. Though I understand people's reservations about giving thier kid a namesake, I LOVED being able to say where my name came from when I grew up. I am thinking about my mother's name and our grandmothers' names, my mother's maiden name, a Joan Baez song (her music has been pretty central to me since I was like 6), and a character in the book that made me become an English major . . .

3) Cannot be named for me or dh (too conceited)

4) Has to sound good with last name and with siblings' names

5) can't be either popular or trendy
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#21 of 22 Old 09-19-2003, 09:42 PM
 
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On a practical note, everyone in the family should have unique initials or it gets complicated to fill out calendars and Christmas lists. Didn't realize this going in and we ended up with DD having the same first inital as DH but he uses a nickname so it works.
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#22 of 22 Old 09-19-2003, 09:46 PM
 
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If I have a son, he and I will both be AM. However, I am ALM and he will be APM.

-Alice, SAHM to dd (2001) and ds (2004) each of whom was a homebirth.jpg, who each self-weaned at 4.5 years bfolderchild.gif, who both fambedsingle2.gif'd, who were bothcd.gif, and both: novaxnocirc.gif.   Also, gd.gif, and goorganic.jpg!

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