Naming questions

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zoe08's picture
Joined: 09/09/08
Posts: 665
Naming questions

How close is too close to family member names?

I feel like half the names I like are out due to nieces/nephews/friends kids being named something close.

I like Helena (Hel-ayn-a) but I have a neice Elaina and I know that is way too close. Shay (my middle name) or Shaylynn (mine and DH's middle names together but would be nicknamed Shay) is on the list, but my nephew's name is Trey. And I babysit him while my sister works, so they would be around each other a lot and Shay and Trey...I dunno. I have asked Mason to say Shay, and he said Trey....so I'm not sure how well that will work. Not to mention my BIL goes by Shane (even though it's not even close to his real name).

Also, how do you feel about picking popular names? A lot of the names I like are pretty popular, but I'm not sure I want her to have a name on the top 20 list. But I guess Mason ended up being a lot more popular than I thought it was when I named him. It went from 34 the year he was born to 12 last year.

I really had no idea I was going to have such a hard time with girls names!

MandyMommyto1's picture
Joined: 06/27/09
Posts: 534

Yeah, names are tough! I tend to like traditional names, and I don't want to have particularly popular names either, but it seems like the traditional names are getting popular again...sigh.
I love Helena, but you're right, it is really close to Elaina. I like Shay too, that one I don't think is as big of a problem from a similarity perspective.
However, having said all that, you should use names you really love, no matter what anyone else says, so if you really want to use Helena, go for it!

nori_garsi's picture
Joined: 10/31/06
Posts: 2069

As far as the family names go, I think you should just go for whatever name you'll like, they'll get over it. I think it's okay if they are similar in sound, but that's just me.

As for us, we tend to like traditional names with traditional spellings (the teacher in me wants to make it easy for my kids when they get to school, lol. A lot of the names I favor are on the popular list so I'm definitely not against it. If there's a name you like though, I think you should use it, popuar or not. Those lists change all the time.

mandi04's picture
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

I don't have much advice, I'm in a similar predicament except it's with my own kid's names. They all end in an -a sound so far, wasn't intentional just happened to be the name we eneded up agreeing on with each one. I'm still open to a name with a different ending despite having 3 with that ending but all dh is suggesting is names with the -a ending. His two favorites right now are Isaiah and Elijah...well our son's name is Josiah, so for me Isaiah is just WAY too close and I'm not a fan of the name Elijah

BloomingRose's picture
Joined: 12/03/08
Posts: 992

If it's a name you like then by all means use it. If someone doesn't like that a name is repeated or sounds similar then they can either not be around or get over it and be happy for your bundle of joy.

We like traditional names and we're not too picky on if they're super popular or not, however that said, it seems that all 4 of my kids have not so popular names, but traditional. Heather and Hailey though aren't used much it seems, and Heather's middle name is Anne, which also isn't used much. The middle name Alexander has been used for quite a few of the kids in the family - hubby, one of my nephews and I'm sure there's others. When we named Cameron, we couldn't find a name that 1, we liked and 2, flowed nicely. We're all about the name flowing nicely together, and Cameron Alexander just sounded right, so he got hubbys middle name. With Hailey, we had the same issue, nothing we liked flowed good except for Marie, which is my middle name, and also has been in my side of the family for generations. It's actually nice that we each have given our kids another piece of 'us' rather than just our dna, and with my family, Marie hopefully will live on :).

Dont be scared to use what you like, she's your baby and only you, hubby and also your daughter when she grows up can say whether you do or don't like the name, and no one else should really influence your choice. Personality makes a person, not a name ;).

indianajones's picture
Joined: 01/21/07
Posts: 1486

DH has vetoed a lot of names just because someone in his (ginormous) extended family has that name. I mean, really, even if we name our kid Grace (for example), they may see 2nd cousin Grace once a year at the family reunion. Not a huge deal in my opinion, but to DH it is.

So for me, closeness of the relative has to be considered along with similarity in names. I won't use names of DD's 1st cousins, because we see them every couple months and talk to them often. That would be confusing. Good thing I don't have the same taste in names as my siblings.. Wink

Shay doesn't seem too close to Trey (IMO), but Helena/Elaina seems close. Do you see your niece often enough to rule it out?

As to popular names- eh, not a huge factor for me. I know a lot of people will steer away from top 10 or 20 names, but it doesn't bother me. My name (Emily) was maybe #15 the year I was born (I looked it up once) but was #1-2 for several years in a row, and now there are Emilys everywhere. My BFF in high school/college was an Emily. Got a little confusing at times, but not a terrible inconvenience. Wasn't a big deal for me to have to use my last initial, and most people have no trouble spelling "Emily", whereas if my name was Bo-shykwa Shenaynay, people might have a little trouble. :biglaugh:

So I don't look at the popularity when picking a name, but I know many people do.

mandi04's picture
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

As far as popularity, I'd prefer a name that's not in the top 20...but one of my daughter's is a Sofia. It isn't the super common spelling but it is a very popular name. My name is Amanda...and I was born in the 80s...aka I was one of many Amanda's, Mandy's, Mandi's, Manda's, ect. I've never been that bothered by it and as an adult I definitely prefer a super popular name over an off the wall one. So if I were to really love another name in the top 10/20 again, I'd still use it.
We both have big family's too which has really reduced a lot of our choices, we are close with our extended family's so we do see our cousin's and their kids about as often as we see any of our friends and I talk to at least one of my cousin's once a week or so. Middle names though I don't care. My oldest daughter's middle name is Marie which is also my middle name, my mom's middle name, my godmother's middle name...and so on. My son and dh's cousin's son, born the same year, have the same middle name (and we see them regularly, they go to the same church as us, so at least once a week and I talk to dh's cousin's wife almost daily).