Do you think if you really are something you don't need to prove it by name choice?

(77 Posts)
atthewelles Wed 16-Jan-13 15:56:21

I have a really edgy, creative friend who is also married to a very quirky artistic guy. Their kids are called Edward (after his grandfather), Laura and Hugo.
I also know another couple - she is a designer, he is a composer - and their dd is called Alice.
All lovely names but quite ordinary.

On the other hand I know people who are not particularly arty but have bent over backwards to find 'creative' or 'different' names for their DC.

I was just wondering if people sometimes try to compensate for something they lack but would like to have when choosing their DCs names??

Heavywheezing Wed 16-Jan-13 18:51:07

Are you writing about me?

Op, you have two of my ordinary children's names in your post.

I have a degree in art and also did fashion in college so come from an artsy background. My husband from a science background. He wanted less artsy names.

I think I' m getting what you are trying to say.

Do you mean the life they would like to have? Choosing arty names or you saying people are pretentious?

I think there is an element of that in names. Surely names can be aspirational.

UnrequitedSkink Wed 16-Jan-13 19:14:37

I do think that people with more unusual or imaginative names tend to lead more creative and interesting lives. My two DSs have names that I really like, but that I also hope will be useful to them when they're older, if only by making them more memorable. They're not massively 'out there' names, just not quite run-of-the-mill either.

TillyTommyTootToot Wed 16-Jan-13 20:14:16

Just because a child has an unusual name it does not mean the parent picked it to say something about themselves. Personally I think each to their own and it really and truly is absolutely none of your business why or what anybody chooses for their child's name!!

rachel234 Wed 16-Jan-13 22:31:38

"I do not think that people who name their children John and people who name their children Atticus have different reasons for doing so.
It is generally the people who name their children John who insist that people who name their children Atticus are doing it for attention etc.
I wonder why the John. Sophie, Harry, Olivia etc owners feel the need to prove that the Atticus, Levi, Pheonix, Liberty etc owners are selfish/attention seeking/insecure blah blah."

Absolutely. Our kids have names that some mumsnetters describe 'poncy' or 'pretentious'..... We chose the names simply because we love them and because they sound great with our short common surname! Why are others so bothered about this? Why are they implying that we had any ulterior motives?

poppydaisy Wed 16-Jan-13 22:40:33

Why are people so obsessed with reading so much into other peoples' name choices? Surely most people choose a name because they like the sound of it and they think it will identify the child.

echidnakid Thu 17-Jan-13 03:00:42

MrsDeVere you make a good point but the same goes for the "not in the top 100!!" people who insist that any name that IS is dull and unimaginative. I have read many posts where people have said they would consider the parents to be dull and unimaginative based on their use of reasonably popular names. Why don't they just assume that those parents just loved Harry as much as they themselves love Otis or whatever?!

Booyhoo Thu 17-Jan-13 03:05:41

way to out yourself OP! name all your friend's DCs!
grin

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 17-Jan-13 08:42:42

I work in the film industry and DH is a creative director. DS has a name that is 'different' - its been recently used by a well known musician but otherwise is rare these days.

I'm confused by your post - were we supposed to call him James?

Personally I like top 10 and classic boys and girls names. Elizabeth, Olivia, Michael and Jack are among my favourites. But there are personal and family resonances in his name that made it right for him.

poppydaisy Thu 17-Jan-13 09:21:53

"MrsDeVere you make a good point but the same goes for the "not in the top 100" people who insist that any name that IS is dull and unimaginative. I have read many posts where people have said they would consider the parents to be dull and unimaginative"

But finding a name dull and unimaginative is not the same as saying the parents are dull and unimaginative. The OP, though, is impying that the parents who choose less common names 'have something to prove'!

MrsDeVere Thu 17-Jan-13 09:48:43

echid on MN (which is the only place I have ever seen people ask for names that go with/is ths name chavvy/would you all hate me and shun me if I called my child this...) it really is usually those who prefer 'normal' names who obsess about others naming their child D'ante.

And they go on to justify their gross prejudice with 'well it may not be fair but it's reality'. Throwing in fucking Freakanomics while they are at it.

Something they would never dare do about any other prejudice.

It is utterly bizarre confused

Dinglebert Thu 17-Jan-13 09:51:41

I think you have a point OP. I know people who I would probably describe as 'aspirational' who have some comical very unusual names for their children.

atthewelles Thu 17-Jan-13 11:08:14

I think some people are instinctively drawn to names that are unusual or different.

But some people turn it into a task; 'do you think this name is a bit ordinary' or 'we want a name that is really different and are looking for suggestions'. I just don't think someone who is genuinely 'different' or 'creative' would bother pondering so much over a name that would stand out; they would either choose one instinctively or just not worry about it.

Some people do choose names that have a certain image attached to them, in my opinion.

Alisvolatpropiis Thu 17-Jan-13 11:55:39

I like unusual names. Not trying to prove anything if and when I do use them. I just like them.

For example, Olivia is absolutely lovely but I infinitely prefer Aurelia. What does that prove? Not much beyond I prefer one to the other!

atthewelles Thu 17-Jan-13 12:44:15

But that's my point Alisvolatpropils. You instinctively are attracted to unusual names - fine. But some people come on here specifically asking posters to suggest names that are 'different' or 'cool' or 'unusual' so that they can use them for their child. They're basically not choosing a name they instinctively like, but are asking other people to suggest a name based on an 'image' they want to portray.
Fair enough if people want to do that, but I was just pondering if it is a way of trying to portray themselves in a way that is contrary to what they are. I'm not judging, just wondering. We all do it in different ways - choice of clothes, furniture etc. I don't know why a couple of people are getting so stroppy about it.

Arcticwaffle Thu 17-Jan-13 12:48:33

My dc have unusual names - there's never been anyone else in their schools with the same name. Because we have boring names the same as billions of other people of our age group, and I didn't much like always being one of many with the name, always having to use the surname as a distinguisher. My dc don't have to always be known as "name surname" or "the other dc" or "fat name" etc. It's about being a unique identifier. Not about our aspirations for them.

Anonymumous Thu 17-Jan-13 14:15:21

OP, you are right - when I named my three children, I was definitely trying to compensate for something I lack but would like to have. And that something is... an interesting, unusual name with a lovely meaning!

atthewelles Thu 17-Jan-13 14:26:47

I did say 'sometimes' in my OP. I wasn't making a sweeping statement about all people.
But it is something I sometimes notice on here. The 'image' of the name seems to be more important to some people than whether its actually one of their favourite names.

MrsDeVere Thu 17-Jan-13 14:33:38

I have been on here for about 6 years. I haven't noticed that trend at all.

I find its far more in the other direction. Aspirational meaning wanting to fit in, not put their child at perceived disadvantage in case others judge them as being a bit, well...you know.

Cant remember ever seeing a 'help me chose a cool name for my baby. I am sure there has been the odd one but definitely not in the majority.

hellokitty123 Thu 17-Jan-13 14:44:11

Our son has a name often described as 'pretentious' on mumsnet (in real life most people love it, as do we!), but when we chose the name we did so simply because we love it, partly due to the fact that it isn't overused already, and it sounds great with our surname.

I am getting a little tired of hearing (on here) that we 'have something to prove' or had some ulterior motive in choosing his name..... Why is it necessary to make those 'accusations' at all?

hellokitty123 Thu 17-Jan-13 14:45:58

"The 'image' of the name seems to be more important to some people than whether its actually one of their favourite names. "

Actually, the opposite is true. We chose a name (before I joined mumsnet) we loved and only afterwards did I realise that some mumsnetters find our choice 'pretentious'....!

hellokitty123 Thu 17-Jan-13 14:46:42

And op, if you were my friend I wouldn't really like it if you posted all three of my kids names on here!

TheSecondComing Thu 17-Jan-13 14:54:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsDeVere Thu 17-Jan-13 14:56:07

i suspect that these views are deeply entrenched and it will be hard to dissuade anyone who believes it, that it isn't so.

It doesn't matter how many times you insist that you chose a name simply because you like it.

If it fits the image of a chav/show off/new money/wannabe/wag etc. nothing is going to shift some people.

Its what they want to believe.

I am just interested to understand why.

atthewelles Thu 17-Jan-13 15:09:20

They're ordinary names HelloKitty, that have been mentioned on here loads of times. If you were my friend I would find it a bit precious if you threw a paddy because you're kids names (along with thousands of other kids) had been posted on a website in a totally innocuous, non critical name. In fact, I even said they were nice.

I honestly don't care what people call their children. There are children with all sorts of names near me.

People will judge my sons name but I couldn't give a fuck tbh. I'm not forcing them to name their children it so whats the issue

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