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  • Name advice from Jennifer Moss,
    founder of BabyNames.com

Brothers’ Names too Similar?

Hello Jennifer,

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 advice is really appreciated.

Sincerely,
Shadi (confused Mom)

Dear Shadi,

You can try giving a child a nickname, and that will stick until they are old enough to decide whether they like it or not. Kids tend to shed their “family” nicknames at school, use their given names, or their friends will create new ones for them.

If you had asked me when you were pregnant with Darian if you should use the name, I would have advised no, because it is too similar to Darius.  But now that it’s done and is part of your son’s identity, you can’t change it.  In order to keep confusion out of the home, sure, give the boys nicknames — but make sure you give both of them nicknames, so one doesn’t feel left out!

Sincerely,
Jennifer

Similar Sibling Names

Hello,

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.

Sincerely,

Shadi (confused Mom)

Dear Shadi,

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!
Sincerely,
Jennifer

Sibling names too similar?

Hi Jennifer,

We have a son Brandon. Is Brenna too similar for a little sister name? Looking for an honest opinion.

Thanks,

Mary Donaghey

Dear Mary,

I do think those are very similar names. You want to make sure siblings have their own identity. I know you don’t have twins, but I would especially recommend individual names for twins.

Sincerely,

Jennifer

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