Similar Sibling Names
Feb 19, 2014 12:52 PM
My boys are 2.5 years apart and we wanted to give them strong Persian names. Our oldest is Darius (Dariush) and our youngest is Darian. I loved their names until recently when people/strangers started commenting on how similar they are, and it’s confusing. Our family voted on our youngest name and chose Darian (who is 16 months old).
Now I’m worried that they are going to be made fun of at school. In your opinion, should I start calling Darian by a nickname like Rian or Ian…..or am I over-analyzing this situation?
My husband thinks Darius and Darian are fine and there is no issue, but I’m losing sleep over this. Your advise is really appreciate.
Shadi (confused Mom)
If you had asked me about your second son’s name before he was born, I would have advised against Darian. Yes, the names are too similar and it is confusing.
However now that Darian is over a year old, he has already identified with his name and I would not go do anything rash like changing it. Your solution is perfect: start thinking of some nicknames that you can at least call him at home that will avoid confusion in the household. If he likes his nickname, he’ll take it to school with him. If not, maybe he’ll choose his own.
Good luck and let me know what you choose!
On Name Sniping
Feb 19, 2014 12:38 PM
My husband and I are expecting our first child in a few weeks and we do not know if we are having a boy or girl. We have been set on a boy’s name for more than two years, and it is actually my great-grandfather’s name, and I love it.
My husband’s distant cousin who lives one state away just had a baby this week and gave their son the same name. Also, unfortunately, this child shares the same last name as ours. I feel very heartbroken over this and hate to pick another name as we have become so attached to this one. I have never met this cousin and my husband has only met him a couple of times in his childhood. Would it be poor etiquette to keep the same name or should we think of an alternative?
Thank you for your help!
It’s one thing to have a close family member snipe a name (especially if you share a surname)! That is inexcusable. But I don’t see a distant family member being that much of an issue.
My advice on name sniping:
* If the two children will not be in close proximity, i.e. not live in the same community, not share schools or friends–then it’s not an issue.
* If the two children do not share the same surname, then it’s not an issue.
* If you had made clear your baby name choice and a close relative uses it before you–close meaning a sibling or next-door cousin–then they’re just jerks! Stick to your guns and use it, anyway, following the two points above.
So, yes, stop being heartbroken and use your intended name! I’m happy to hear from others who have actually gone through this with their relatives or BFFs.
I love reading the naming blogs, BUT I have to say my #1 pet peeve is when the “experts” advise not to use a name that is going to cause your child to spell it. I agree that very unusual spellings can make a name seem less “classy” but simple variations seem perfectly fine to me. My main irritation is that even the MOST simple of names, take John or Catherine for example, which are VERY traditional, have variations in spellings, and will require your child to spell out their name. Therefore, I don’t see the point of trying to avoid spelling your name—it’s so common that I don’t think that should be an impediment. I’ve had to spell out my name my whole life, and honestly it never bothers me. I’d love to see a poll taken, where people answer whether or not it actually bothers them to spell out their name, before putting such an emphasis on avoiding it…
Thank you for your input. We always encourage our readers to tell us about their real-life name experiences. We would love to hear from others about this issue. Did you have a common name with an unusual spelling? Was it a burden for you? Let us know.
The Dexter Association
Jan 29, 2014 10:57 AM
My husband and I have a last name ending in –er so I always said I would NEVER name a child something ending in –er to avoid the rhyming sound. Lately, I’ve been hung up on Trent and he’s liking Dexter…I actually don’t think it sounds as rhyming as a lot of other –er names and actually do like it, but I’m not sure I like the idea of telling our son we came up with his name from a serial killer on TV. Neither name actually has much meaning either. Thoughts?
Dexter has always been one of my all-time favorite names ever since I first saw the movie Philadelphia Story, where Cary Grant played C.K. Dexter Haven. Then the cartoon came out, and I loved the cartoon and it still topped my (personal) name list for boys. Then came the TV series, eponymously named after the serial killer anti-hero. And although I loved the series, the name is now unfortunately associated with that character. For that reason, I’d avoid it. At least for now. Perhaps ten years down the line there will be another Dexter that will “cleanse our palette” of the name, so to speak.
That being said, I don’t think you have to avoid “-er” names if you really love them. The rhyming factor isn’t the issue, but I think I would avoid using a name that was originally an occupational surname–like Parker or Mason. To me, having two occupational surnames is less attractive than the rhyming factor.
Hope that helps!