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What is wrong with naming a baby after a living family member?

(37 Posts)
AngelaOxford Sun 18-Aug-13 21:19:38

Why do people think it's odd to name your child after a living member of your family?

Our second child is a girl and we decided that we shall call her Mary, after my mother-in-law because we would like to honour our relationship with her. She has really been the greatest support during those 10 years that my husband and I have been married and I feel like she is my mother too. We are so unbelievably excited with our decision regarding the name, only to have this feeling ruined by some of our closest friends who are thinking naming a baby after a living member of the family is a terrible idea.

If you agree that naming a child after a living family member is a terrible idea, can you please explain to me why?

Casmama Sun 18-Aug-13 23:13:11

Unimaginative blush

KatOD Sun 18-Aug-13 23:26:09

There's nothing wrong with it, do what you like and tell your friends to bugger off

AngelaOxford Sun 18-Aug-13 23:30:45

Casmama, how exactly is it lazy and unimaginative? I am not doing it because I am bored of finding another name for my child!

Re the attention issue, I'll just call "Mary" both will turn and then I'll tell them whom I am referring to! It's so simple!!

My dad is named after his dad. They even have the same two middle names. Dad has never been referred to as junior either.

Confusing when the first name is shouted and they both reply.

SunnyIntervals Sun 18-Aug-13 23:33:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ihatepeas Sun 18-Aug-13 23:39:16

Not weird at all.
Fwiw I love the name Mary. Dd was almost Mary its such a lovely name.

kaumana Sun 18-Aug-13 23:45:18

Don't see why it would be an issue. I was named after my gran who was very much alive at the time! Now, years after her passing, I cherish "our" name.

ravenAK Sun 18-Aug-13 23:52:28

I think it's lovely actually.

Dh happens to have my all-time favourite name for a boy, which ruled it out for ds, so we chose something v similar (so eg. one is John or Robert say, the other Jonathan or Robin. Not those though!).

It's mildly confusing as both names have a common shortened form, which we use for dh but a different one for ds - but he still gets called his dad's nn on occasion. & as he gets older I suspect post will be a PITA - my father & I share a first initial & used to sometimes open each other's stuff.

But when you have a grandparent/grandchild sharing a name, & presumably not living at the same address, these minor hassles don't apply, so I can't see any reason at all why not.

There are two names which are woven through 3 generations of my mother's family, & everyone concerned has always seen this as a positive thing - I don't like either of them, or I'd definitely have liked the idea of carrying on the tradition!

eccentrica Mon 19-Aug-13 09:21:42

sunny I was going to say the samev- clearly your grandparents were not overly bound by tradition! (nothing wrong with that I hasten to add, my children have one Jewish, one welsh, unmarried parents)

I think it is fairly universally 'not done' at least among Ashkenazi Jews.

funnily enough though, although I'm completely non religious, the name thing still has those resonances for me. I couldn't name my child after a living relative, it would just feel wrong.

I couldn't care less if someone else does it though. my dp has his dad and grandfather's names as middle names

SunnyIntervals Mon 19-Aug-13 09:44:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SleepyCatOnTheMat Mon 19-Aug-13 13:47:40

It used to be considered bad luck in this country to name a child after a living person. But of course this hasn't stopped thousands of people doing it over the centuries with no ill effects.

For what it's worth, I think because you used your DM's name (well, a variant of it) as a middle name for DC1, you can only use your DMIL's name as a middle name, not a first name, for DC2. Otherwise it's not fair, no? No wonder your DM wasn't overly enthusiastic about the idea, she must feel slighted.

parabelle Mon 19-Aug-13 13:59:17

Like others have said, it's a Jewish tradition. Courteney Cox wanted to name her dd Courteney after her mum (and herself) but David Arquette is Jewish so they called her Coco after her mum's nickname.

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