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To wonder why it's OK - even considered a positive thing- to give girls names that are traditionally considered boy's names but....

(487 Posts)
BertrandRussell Tue 31-Jan-17 13:01:19

.......not the other way round?

BenefitsQuestions Tue 31-Jan-17 13:02:49

Because being male is a positive thing and being a women isn't. The same reason a "tomboy" is a fine thing for a girl to be but a "sissy" is an awful thing for a boy to be.

"Boy" characteristics are positive and "girly" ones are negative.

5foot5 Tue 31-Jan-17 13:10:35

Interesting observations!

I think there are then cases where the "boy's" name becomes so common as a "girl's" name that it comes as a surprise when you hear of/ or come across a male with that name.

For my part I was surprised the first time I came across males called Hilary, Beverley and Kim.

BertrandRussell Tue 31-Jan-17 13:16:00

Absolutely. Once a name starts being used for girls it tends to lose popularity for boys..........

TheIncredibleBookEatingManchot Tue 31-Jan-17 13:21:31

There's a sort of, "Look my daughter's as good as a boy" mentality about giving a girl a boy's name.

It annoys me.

It's not names becoming unisex as such that's annoying. It's just that girls names are seen as too girly, like there's something wrong with being a girl.

I'm not articulating this very well, but if people are naming their daughters things like James or Dylan why is no one naming their sons Annabelle or Vanessa?

Because their girl's names and girls are inferior?

TheIncredibleBookEatingManchot Tue 31-Jan-17 13:22:19

*they're not their.

ARumWithAView Tue 31-Jan-17 13:28:30

It's okay to give boys feminine names, if it's with the express intention of teaching them to be tough and kick the crap out of everyone who mocks them. That's just good parenting. Obviously, if you're a boy named Sue who doesn't enjoy getting into bar-fights, you're shit out of luck, but that's tough.

GeordieShorefg Tue 31-Jan-17 13:33:32

Whatever anyone's views, people need to be aware of the reality of giving their child an unusual name.

The reality not the 'this is how the world should be, and I shall explain that to my LO every time they come home crying'

Children do not have the reasoning that most adults do. they can be real little bleeders when another child has something slightly different about them

nuttyknitter Tue 31-Jan-17 13:36:01

For the same reason that it's apparently uncontroversial to dress girls in blue but beyond the pale for boys to wear pink - masculinity is to be aspired to, femininity not so much.

Whosthebestbabainalltheworld Tue 31-Jan-17 13:40:28

Is a bit like Bachelor vs Spinster. One's playing the field and the other is on the shelf...

ThroughThickAndThin01 Tue 31-Jan-17 13:48:05

I have a boys name as my middle name. It was my mothers maiden name. I hate it and don't use it. I wish my parents had thought it through. I find it hugely embarrassing.

CaoNiMa Tue 31-Jan-17 14:41:56

Patriarchy, innit.

TreacleTreacleLittleStar Tue 31-Jan-17 14:47:10

My Daughter's name is Mackenzie. And I get so many people saying "But that's a boy's name?" When actually, traditionally it's a girl's name. Makes me SO mad!!!

I realised it was a little out of the ordinary but it was a name that stuck in my head and nothing else compared to it. And my gawd does it suit her!! halo

BertrandRussell Tue 31-Jan-17 14:47:40

There is another thread currently running with lots of "names aren't gendered" posters. I'd love one of them to come on here and tell me their point of view. What would they say, for example, if I asked for opinions on calling a boy Margaret, shortened to Mog? I picked that example because I actually know two Mogs, one man, one woman. The man is Morgan, the woman is Margaret.

CockacidalManiac Tue 31-Jan-17 14:48:43

Surely Mog is a cat's name?

BertrandRussell Tue 31-Jan-17 14:53:18

Interesting about Mackenzie-when was it a girl's name? It's been majority boys for the past 20 years.....

BertrandRussell Tue 31-Jan-17 14:54:58

grin*@Maniac*. I also know a Tabby and a Felix. Who are people. And a Poppy and an Adelaide who are cats.......

TeacupDrama Tue 31-Jan-17 14:56:08

Mackenzie is actually a scottish /irish surname from Gaelic "mac" meaning son and kenzie which derives from Coinneach meaning the fair or handsome man , coinneach is anglized as Kenneth
basically Kenzie's son

amusedbush Tue 31-Jan-17 15:00:50

My Daughter's name is Mackenzie [...] traditionally it's a girl's name

Traditionally it's a surname! wink

To answer the OP, I agree that it's because femininity isn't a positive thing. I went to school with a guy called Lindsay and he was teased mercilessly. However, I know girls called Cameron and Hayden who get endless compliments on their names!

MrsJayy Tue 31-Jan-17 15:00:50

Dh has a femine (sp) name it is actually a male scottish name but he got ribbed at school for it he also gets letters for Miss/Mrs it drives him nuts. It is all to do with male names being strong and powerful and girl names being all flowery and weak you see it all the time in baby names that the op wants a strong name and the likes of Riley is posted i am not sure what the solution is really, my Dds have girl pretty names they are not weak women though.

Ontopofthesunset Tue 31-Jan-17 15:00:57

You can aspire for your girl to be as good as a boy but there is no way you want your boy to be as rubbish as a girl. Basically.

Girls can try to be tough and clever and have jobs and stuff, but we don't want boys aiming to be weak and simpering and looking after babies and shit.

Mackenzie is actually traditionally a surname, and historically surnames have been given to boys not girls. There has been a relatively recent fashion in the US, spreading to here, to give girls surnamey boys' names, and Mackenzie is an example of that. But all your 19th century Mackenzies or McKenzie's were male. And that's a classic case of how you wouldn't call a boy that in the US now because it's been weakened by girliness.

noeffingidea Tue 31-Jan-17 15:01:40

Mackenzie isn't a traditional name though, is it? So it could be either a girl or boy name.
I've got to be honest here, as much as I don't agree with gender stereotyping generally, I really wanted my boys to have 'proper' boys names, and my daughter to have a proper , ie what I thought of as pretty, girls name.
My last child was born 16 years ago though, so I might possibly go for something more unisex for all 3 of them.
Actually come to think of it,my boys names are unisex albeit with different spellings. I think they suit both sexes equally.

CecilyP Tue 31-Jan-17 15:05:37

I have a boys name as my middle name. It was my mothers maiden name. I hate it and don't use it. I wish my parents had thought it through. I find it hugely embarrassing.

That's not so unusual, ThroughThick. It is quite a common thing in Scotland.

misshelena Tue 31-Jan-17 15:09:11

Is pink really still that controversial for boys? DD16's boyfriend is a serious jock and wears pink regularly -- baby pink button down shirt, hot pink sports competition wear, hot pink phone case, school binders in shades of pink, etc. And he is not the only one by any means. No one ever gives him grief.
I think the fact that big sports brands make expensive competition wear in hot pink for men is a pretty good indication that girls' reign over pink is over.

Re. names -- boys still can't have girls' names. They'll be teased in school. Don't do that to your DSs.

Ontopofthesunset Tue 31-Jan-17 15:10:50

No, it's not a very common name, but it was traditionally a boys' name A quick Google reveals no famous women called that before 1970 but eg Mackenzie Thorpe, British artist, b.1956, Mackenzie Crook, the actor, b.1970, Sir Mackenzie Bowell, Canadian prime minister, b. 1823, Mackenzie Astin, US actor, b. 1973, McKenzie Grant, Australian politician, b. 1834.

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