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Nicknames - unpopular opinion?

60 replies

Prairie21 · 30/07/2022 00:29

Am I the only one who doesn't like/understand nicknames?

I see on a lot of threads people trying to plan what the nickname will be for their child's name or even choosing the nickname before the official name that will go on the birth certificate.

Does everyone in the UK get a nickname? I live in the UK but am from somewhere where nicknames aren't really a thing.

I am now worried that the names I lovingly chose for my DC will never get used and get changed to something else. They both have three syllables too. We're doomed aren't we?

OP posts:
GretaVanFleet · 30/07/2022 15:21

Melisande90 · 30/07/2022 14:30

Yeah I don’t understand it either. My DD has a name which is a diminutive for another longer name - I loved the diminutive but not fussed on the long name so I just named her the diminutive and that’s what’s on her birth certificate. And it’s a name which will be perfectly acceptable no matter what age she is, her profession etc. Loads of people I know in real life have done this. Where I’m from a nickname isn’t usually anything to do with the given name, we would say “Alex short for Alexander” for example rather than “Alex as a nickname for Alexander”. As a pp said I would consider a nickname to be Smiley for someone who smiles a lot etc

But we loved the long name and the diminutive and that’s why the long name is on their birth certificates.

The same could be said about middle names, they’re generally not used yet children are given them.

GretaVanFleet · 30/07/2022 15:31

alanabennett · 30/07/2022 15:14

You address then by the names you love - that I understand. But giving them a version of the name that they, in your words, "they were never going to be addressed by" - that's nonsensical.

Nonsensical to you but not to us. IMO a made up name like Nevaeh (Heaven spelt backwards) or Chloe being spelt Klowee is far more nonsensical than anything I have done regarding naming children.

Topseyt123 · 30/07/2022 17:57

Just choose a name where you like the long form and the usual short forms.

My parents tried throughout our childhoods to dictate that my sister could not be known by any shortenings of her name (hers is easily shortened, mine isn't). They even used to try and publicly correct her friends, which was cringeworthy. It didn't work. She uses the shortening, and it suits her.

Oddly enough, despite insisting that neither of us should be known by anything other than our "proper" names, both of my parents were always known by short versions of their own, a double standard to which they only very reluctantly admitted when we teased them about it as adults. When we were growing up apparently only they were allowed to shorten their names. 🙄🤣

Remainiac · 30/07/2022 18:01

Squirrelsnut · 30/07/2022 09:12

I find it odd that people plan their child's nickname. Nicknames should arise naturally or not at all. I also don't think a shortened version of the fullname is a nickname. It's just an abbreviation.

Exactly this. Both my DSs have normal names with diminutives, such as Alexander and Jonathan (not their names). Both also have nicknames which have no relation to their actual names but have arisen from their habits/personalities/ physical characteristics. A diminutive is not a nickname.

Spanielsarepainless · 30/07/2022 18:05

I have never had a nickname. I was called by the diminutive for a year or two by an American friend but not in the last forty years. I don't understand the planning of one!

Dippydonky · 30/07/2022 18:09

I think it’s worth thinking about ….. in the same way as initials could be. A boy I went to school with had two middle names. His parents wanted to call him Robert Ian, but their surname starts with a P. Having the initial RIP wasn’t ideal so they popped another middle name in. I’d think along the lines of if anything could be really terrible for the child in a nickname, which could depend on the surname - e.g. Hugo may be a lovely name, but if your surname is York will Hugo York become Hugh York (and then New York …. And then that New York New York song is the theme turn to his life!… probably quite a tame example… but I can’t think of anything really terrible!)

Incidentally… my name can’t be shortened because my Dad dislikes nicknames. However - Dad gave me what he calls a ‘pet name’ (no words can explain how much his logic baffles me!!!) and people tent to lengthen my name as a nickname (add an “i’ sound onto the end). And everyone I know with ‘true’ nick names are called things completely unrelated to their actual name… e.g. eat lots of McDonalds and we’ll call you nuggets (don’t know any nuggets… do know someone named after food items!)

C0mfyChairP0se · 30/07/2022 18:15

Louise0701 · 30/07/2022 09:01

@C0mfyChairP0se can you explain why it’s good? Many people don’t have name options and manage to get through life just fine.

It's good because names date and while libby might be perfectly fitting for friends and family, she may want to use Elizabeth sometimes and if your parents give her that choice rather than making the decision themselves then that is good for their child. It's just sensible. Not compulsory, you call your children what you like but it is clear why it's good

GretaVanFleet · 30/07/2022 18:27

I’d think along the lines of if anything could be really terrible for the child in a nickname, which could depend on the surname - e.g. Hugo may be a lovely name, but if your surname is York will Hugo York become Hugh York (and then New York …. And then that New York New York song is the theme turn to his life!… probably quite a tame example… but I can’t think of anything really terrible!)

We can only do so much though, all it takes is for a band to release a track and that’s it. I knew a Gordon who was subjected to ‘Gordon is a moron’ mercilessly and I’m sure there are a lot of Ruby Ruby Ruby Ruby’s that hate the Kaiser Chiefs.

easyday · 30/07/2022 18:44

I think most nicknames just happen. My mother had one for me, a version of my middle name, but no one else called me that.
If you name your child 'Elizabeth' but only call her Betty, then that's the name she'll have until she's old enough to either keep it or change it.
An ex boyfriend was Jimmy but felt that too juvenile for a lawyer so goes by James now (though I always think of him as Jimmy).

TheFutureIs · 30/07/2022 18:48

I chose a name that I love for my DD. It does shorten to a "nickname" which I dislike, but this far she is very definite that she is known by her full name and anyone who shortens it gets told off by her

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