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To be surprised that pretty much everyone I know has given their child a ‘wacky’ name?

(199 Posts)
custarddonut Fri 12-Jul-19 14:21:59

I’m reluctant to give specific examples as it would be potentially outing but by way of comparison I mean that none of my friends’ kids have names that were fairly standard when I was growing up in the 80s. E.g. Rachel / Sarah / Lucy / Daniel / Matthew / John / David etc.

I appreciate that names go in and out of fashion, and I understand (to a degree) that parents perhaps want their kids to stand out (or at least not have what are perceived as ‘boring’ or totally run-of-the-mill names, but more often than not the names in use now (in my circles at least) are, in my opinion, pretentious at best and verging on the ridiculous at worst! Worst-case is where they are sort of just random words, rather than actual names, e.g. ‘snowy’. Or names like the Geldof children e.g. ‘Pixie’ etc. Then you get names which are like old age pensioner names but not necessarily the trendy ones …they seem so dreary to me! (e.g. Phylis) OR names which to me sound really American (and names that you’d need to be quite cool to pull off, or a bit more grown up – they don’t seem to suit kids IMO) e.g. Harrison / Grayson etc. When I think of it, not a single friend of mine has given their kid what I would consider to be a ‘normal’ name.. and this is of a circle of say, 25 kids.

AIBU to feel a bit disappointed about this? I know, each to their own, live and let live, but to me it seems a bit of a shame that ‘normal’ names seem so unfashionable these days…OR, if I were to call my child something like ‘Anna’, would I be setting them up for standing out (in the wrong way) when they go to school? Will the inverse happen and names like ‘John’ become the weird names?!?

WhyTho Fri 12-Jul-19 14:58:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Purpletigers Fri 12-Jul-19 14:59:43

I agree with you .
Classic names which could belong to any generation in the last 100 years are names like William, John , Samuel , George , Robert , Henry , James , Oliver , Charles, Mark, Philip , Hugh , Harry, Frederick, Simon , Andrew, Benjamin, Richard
Elizabeth , Ellen , Lucy, Anna , Charlotte , Catherine , Sarah, Mary
Names like Keith , Brian, Gary , Trevor , Darren , Kyle, Heather , Elaine , Michelle Claire have dated
Names like Rylee , Tyler,Kyla, Kayla, Keyano are well different and won’t stand the test of time.

Then you have the try hard names which the famous or middle classes strive for so you have lots of Sebastian,Hugo , Monty, Wilfred, Arlo, Ivo, Milo, Maud, Mabel, Ptolemy, Persephone etc

Names are fascinating.

Lsquiggles Fri 12-Jul-19 15:00:05

I'm 23 and agree, I've just had my first and it was important to me than her name was somewhat traditional as quirky names just aren't for me. I named her Rose which was my nans middle name, I think it's a shame such names are becoming less common but some of the quirkier names are nice too. Each to their own I guess smile

IntoValhalla Fri 12-Jul-19 15:01:16

I saw a thing the other day about name trends throughout history, and it would appear that lots of names have a “100 year comeback”. So names that were really popular in the 1920’s are likely to have a resurgence of popularity over the next few years.
Maybe in 2060-something there will be a load of baby Linda’s and Keith’s grin

Expressedways Fri 12-Jul-19 15:01:25

I’ve met 3 baby/toddler Fiona’s recently- it might just be having a come back!

MegaBlocks Fri 12-Jul-19 15:02:18

I don’t think you’re being unreasonable. But then again I’m probably being unreasonable too grin

I have an uncommon name and I absolutely hate it. People can’t spell it or pronounce it half the time. It’s awful I’ve seen it slated on here quite a few times blush

My children have normal names because of this. I mean not top 50 but well known not unusual bog standard names.

custarddonut Fri 12-Jul-19 15:03:24

DH and I often play a game where we think about announcing the birth of our first-born on facebook and wonder, if we picked a wacky name, whether any of our friends would blink twice. Persephone reminds me of that "Toast of London" programme's "Penvelope" (their take on penelope)

Purpletigers Fri 12-Jul-19 15:05:12

Rose is a beautiful and classic name . Good choice .
Rosalind is another very pretty but underused name .
My grandparents had fab names .

Hippee Fri 12-Jul-19 15:06:35

Purpletigers - I think you must live near me - I heard a parent shouting "Ptolemy" at the swimming baths grin

GummyGoddess Fri 12-Jul-19 15:07:37

Your friends could have been like me. Picked a name we liked, assumed as we liked it that others would too and therefore we would meet at least one other child with it. So far we have heard of a teenage one but not met a single other dc1 and everyone says how unusual it is. That isn't what I wanted, I was going for uncommon but not unheard of instead of ultra rare. I just didn't know any other children so had no idea what names would be out there.

custarddonut Fri 12-Jul-19 15:08:02

Yes I love Rose too, Rosalind nice also.

Ptolemy makes me cringe somewhat, I just think '"poor kid"

C305 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:09:18

As a reception teacher in quite a diverse area, for every 'wacky' name that you've mentioned, there are still loads of children with more 'top 10 name list' names, which do still tend to be the more traditional ones... still lots of Henry, Oliver, Jack, Rebecca, Emily, Jessica etc. but personally, I love having 30 different names with all different characters and have also taught my fair share of Princess, Snow, Dior etc! Names become somewhat unimportant when you actually get to know the people (children or adults) as you loose whatever association or pre conceived ideas you may have had with it previously and it just becomes them! Each to their own, variety is the space of life! I'm due in late September and although will by no means be making up my own name, I definitely want to be able to give my child a name where they won't constantly have to be known as their name + initial of surname at school!

Rosiesandposies1 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:11:04

Ds has left school now and is in university, but amongst his old friends he had:- Prince, Princess, Star, Moon, Heart, Mason, Harrison, Harper, Archie, Milo, Lucas, Fergus, Magnus, Cameron , Oskar, Avery, Aubrey, Jenson, Ivy, Iris, Theo and Trixie.

So they all seem ‘normal’ to me now that ds is almost 20. So I guess it is what you are also use too!

floribunda18 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:11:08

My daughter is 14. To her, names like Claire, Louise, Jennifer, Simon, Steve and John, which were very common in the 1970s and 1980s, sound like old lady/old man names to her and not "normal" at all, just as Gen X and Y's grandparents names, which have become more fashionable since the 00s, sounded old fashioned and grannyish to us when we were teenagers.

TealGreenBalloons Fri 12-Jul-19 15:11:54

Why on earth would you be disappointed at what someone else has called their child?

If you want to give your own kid a name from the top 10 now, or the top 10 from when you were growing up, or something completely outside the top 1000, then just do it. It's a bit weird to care so much about what other people are calling their children.

floribunda18 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:13:23

I don't think any of the top 100 girls or boys names sound wacky or weird.

WhateverHappenedToMe Fri 12-Jul-19 15:15:35

I know someone who has two children in their late 20s/early 30s. At the time they were born she gave them names that were "real" names but rarely used, so they would stand out without drawing too much comment.

Her children are Amelia and Oliver.

LondonJax Fri 12-Jul-19 15:16:12

When I was at school (late 60s/early 70s) the only Amy I knew was my nan's friend (who was in her 80s). The same with Emily. We had a few girls called Emma but no Emily. Henry and George were my elderly Uncles names along with William. Definitely none in my year at school or if there were they didn't let on as those names were considered old fashioned.

Fashions change, names come round again and that's really nice. It's nice to see the re-emergence of Emily, Will, Harry etc.,

Plus, don't forget, different cultures favour different names. We had a few Primroses and a Precious in my school, one Lucky and a Eugene - different cultures and ethnic backgrounds.

NiceLegsShameAboutTheFace Fri 12-Jul-19 15:16:12

It all comes down to individual preferences in the end.

I'm all about Rebecca and Rachael but I perfectly understand that many will prefer something more edgy.

Orangeballon Fri 12-Jul-19 15:17:33

I once received a CV from a female prospective employee and her name was Honey. CV went straight in the bin. No way was I calling a fellow employee Honey, anyway my dog at the time was called Honey and it would've been disrespectful to my dog.

nettie434 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:17:39

Ruby is a good example of a name that has changed completely in popularity. A few years ago, I would have assumed that it was somebody born in the very early 20th century.

I think it was France where they used to have an approved list of names but I don’t know if that rule still exists.

It’s hard to predict whether children will like their unusual names. Zowie Bowie famously uses Duncan Jones. However I have a friend who liked having an unusual first name as a child. I rather like that there is a much greater range of first names now. I remember at school a teacher said, ‘You mean there is no Susan in this class?’ We must have just been on the cusp of the name losing popularity.

Pemba Fri 12-Jul-19 15:17:59

Interesting what you say about names like Fiona which are considered middle aged (older middle aged?) names here now. (Although a pp says she knows a few babies?)

I have noticed in American TV dramas kids with names like Fiona and Ian. I think maybe popular over there now because they weren't popular in the 60s/70s like they were here in the UK. So they seem new and fresh names over there I suppose. Similarly, someone on here once said Claire is becoming popular in the US for babies, not Clara as we now have here. I guess Claire wasn't so ubiquitous in the 70s over there as here in the UK?

Jamsangwich Fri 12-Jul-19 15:18:09

The trouble with trendy names is that sooner or later, they're so common (and perceived as common, the horrid snobby meaning of the word) that the holders of such names start to wish they were called something else. Who calls their kids Sharon and Tracey now? Yet they're both really pretty names. My great neice is Amelia, and she's one of goodness knows how many Amelias born in 2018. It's just fashion, and maybe, one day, some girl in 2055 will like her Granny Tracey's name and will name HER baby Tracey!

Rosiesandposies1 Fri 12-Jul-19 15:18:57

And to be honest I would rather hear those names than- Wilfred, Phylis, Mary, Susannnah, Richard, John, Matthew, Mark, Michael, Susan, Barbara, Denis, Dennis, Charles, Francis, Leo, David and Diana. (I’ve just insulted have my family).

But to me? They are ‘old, boring names’ (had ds young so I’m not 40 yet!), they are parent and grandparent names. I like people having different names (within reason- Princess I still can’t get my head around, sorry), I think it’s nice, rather than a class with:- 3 Evie’s, 4 Oliviers, 2 Ella-May’s, 2 Daisy-Mai’s, 3 Archie’s. A friend taught a class last year, where only 4 children had a name, that no other in the class had. Anyone would think there’s not enough nice names in the world!

Jamsangwich Fri 12-Jul-19 15:20:28

Iceland has a list of first names that you must choose from, as far as I know. I think they're trying to keep their cultural names in use, to stop the odd nutter calling their kid "Moon-Unit" or whatever Frank Zappa called his wee girl. I think it was Moon-Unit!

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