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To think i know how my childs name is pronounced?

242 replies

crappymummum · 08/05/2011 14:36

So my friend says she has just had an in depth argument with one of her friends who i happen to know over my daughters name.

DD is called Luisa.Not Louisa but LuiSa as in emphasis on the S not the soft sounding s in Louisa.I think the name originates from Germany but is widely used in Spain.
My DD was born in Spain (we are now back in the UK) so i liked the thought of a Spanish name, especially as we planned on staying there for some time.My Aunt is Spanish and also called Luisa.

Apparently this argument started when the lady started arguing with my friend when she was pronouncing it correctly saying no its Louisa,it's stupid etc and how it is just an alternative spelling but pronounced the same etc etc.

This is becoming a bit of a problem as i have noticed friends/teachers etc calling her Louisa...even receiving invites to parties with Louisa on.

Should i just let them get on with it for an easy life for my daughter and just accept that Louisa is what she will be called?

AIBU to be really bloody annoyed about this woman?

OP posts:
acumenin · 09/05/2011 08:42

You'll have to get over it. People have been "correcting" me on the pronunciation of my own surname for my entire life. (Actually only white English people - other people don't "correct" in this way.)

I have a very common Irish surname that several famous people share (and pronounce in the same way). It's just a thing English people do (and I am English and have found myself doing it to others before stopping myself in a giant moment of ARGH).

Gowkstorm · 09/05/2011 08:54

Elf, when speaking to the person herself (or mutual friends/acquaintances), I would say Vir-hin-nee-ah. When speaking to people who don't know her (in the UK) I'd say Vir-gin-ia - otherwise you'll likely receive blank/incredulous looks, particularly when they ask for clarification on the spelling.

In Spain, I always introduced myself (Louisa) to Spaniards as Luisa. They were not likely going to be able to give Louisa/Luisa the British rendering, so why try to insist?

English speakers don't pronounce "Los Angeles" (Spanish name) as Spanish speakers would, but no-one takes issue over that (and doubtless many other English renderings of foreign place names).

tyler80 · 09/05/2011 08:56

Elf I would always attempt to pronounce in the same way as the bearer of the name unless told otherwise. But of course allowances have to be made as some names are almost impossible for most English speakers to pronounce correctly. I still can't say my OH's name correctly Blush

tyler80 · 09/05/2011 08:59

But I would always pronounce Jesus Spanish style otherwise it just sounds odd to be talking about my friend Jesus Grin

xstitch · 09/05/2011 09:04

I agree with tyler you should always attempt to pronounce it the way the bearer of the name does. To refuse to try is rude.

I also don't think people should have to get used to people telling them they are saying their own name wrong. Others have to get used to there being different names and whilst mistakes can be made saying someone else's name you should never argue that the bearer of the name is wrong it is incredibly rude. In fact it sends my blood pressure through the roof when people do it to me and my name is pronounced and spelt the most common way.

lesley33 · 09/05/2011 09:05

YANBU But I can struggle with pronounciations that insist certain vowels are pronounced a certain way. I have a fairly strong accenta nd really struggle to pronounce for example the vowel a in a differeny to my accent. I am not being ignorant, but I physically can't pronounce vowels in certain ways - and not for want of trying!

lesley33 · 09/05/2011 09:09

Have a friend whose OH's name is meant to be pronounced with a rolling r. Friend who has been with her OH for 19 years still can't say it correctly as she can't roll her rrs.

I think there is a big difference between people not trying to say a name correctly or even trying to correct your pronounciation! - and someone struggling to say a name using very unfamiliar pronounciation.

xstitch · 09/05/2011 09:10

Definitely lesley it really is the trying to correct the bearer of the name that is the worst.

ShowOfHands · 09/05/2011 09:13

I would try to pronounce it exactly as you asked. It's only polite.

But bear in mind that it's such a subtle difference that some people just won't be able to hear it. It's like 'fork' and 'pork'. I know they don't rhyme. The logical part of my brain tells me why they don't rhyme. But I can't hear the difference iyswim. I can't even remember which one I pronounce wrong half the time.

KaraStarbuckThrace · 09/05/2011 09:17

I've had 36 years of people mispronouncing my first name. I am used to it. My family and my DH pronounce correctly, and so do people in Spain (although not strictly a Spanish name, it is far more popular there than here).
What WINDS me up is people 'correcting' the spelling, especially on email when my name is part of my email address.

Teachermumof3 · 09/05/2011 09:24

It's like 'fork' and 'pork'. I know they don't rhyme.

Why don't they rhyme-what have I missed!??

tyler80 · 09/05/2011 09:31

I was thinking the same teachermumof3

I'm sure they rhyme in my accent and I've not been told I pronounce either one incorrectly

PinotGrigiosKittens · 09/05/2011 09:34

Umm, fork and pork do rhyme Confused

seeker · 09/05/2011 09:36

Look - people are not telepathic. It is WILDLY unreasonable to call your child a name that it's unlikely most people have heard - or even worse, one they'll think they know, but catually they don't - and expect them to get it right.
That's why people should think very carefully about the names.

You will only have to do this correcting until she's old enough to do it for herself - she'll have to do it for the next 80 years! Or move to Spain. Or, more likely, give up and call herself the English version - whch would be a shame, beacuse people have a right to their names.

TurtlesAreRetroRight · 09/05/2011 09:36

They don't rhyme. I was bloody shocked too, but apparently I've been saying one or the other wrong for years. Hang on...


Sorry it's American but am in a rush. I remember my linguistics professor telling me at uni and my jaw hitting the floor.
PinotGrigiosKittens · 09/05/2011 09:38

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PinotGrigiosKittens · 09/05/2011 09:40


lesley33 · 09/05/2011 09:41

According to my accent fork and pork don't rhyme.

lesley33 · 09/05/2011 09:41

But the difference is quite subtle.

Hammy02 · 09/05/2011 09:41

I think it will probably always be this way. Sometimes people think it is pretentious when people ask for a name to be pronounced a different way to the 'norm'. I'm thinking of Ralph Rafe Fiennes. Although I appreciate you aren't.

ZZZenAgain · 09/05/2011 09:47

I have a name with A's in it. It is a perfectly ordinary name i n the English speaking world but it gets pronounced very differently depending on where people come from regionally and "class"-wise

ShowOfHands · 09/05/2011 09:48

My pork and fork example was to illustrate the problem. I remember a thread on here a couple of years ago and several people said they obviously didn't rhyme and are pronounced utterly differently. Some people could see the difference once pointed out. Others could not see/hear it at all.

It's quite common and when it seems obvious to some, it's really difficult to others. Just like the name Luisa. People on here have said they can't immediately see the difference and admitted they'd struggle with it. I know a Luisa so am used to it being different to Louisa. I had colleagues once called Janet and Jeanette and our boss could not get it right in her head. I was merely pointing out that sometimes it's just a struggle and people aren't being deliberately rude.

DiscoDaisy · 09/05/2011 09:51

My friend is called Luisa and she pronounces it Louisa.

lesley33 · 09/05/2011 09:53

I totally agree. I worked with someone once who had an unusual pronounciation of her name. She used to get angry at people mispronouncing it. To pronounce it correctly you had to say the vowel a in a certain way that I just could never master. I just ended up never using her name in her hearing. I had tried to pronounce it correctly, but just couldn't get it.

Wordwork · 09/05/2011 09:55

I don't understand. That video doesn't say pork and fork don't rhyme. It just points out how to get the opening consonannt sounds correct -- presumably its for hearing-impaired people who are trying to get the words correct without hearing them.

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