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Baby name advice from Jennifer Moss, founder of BabyNames.com. Have a question for Jennifer? E-mail it to question@babynames.com

Two First Names?

Hi Jennifer,

I’m just over 3 months along with my second child and my husband and I are slightly disagreeing about a girl’s name. We’ve decided on Abraham for a boy but for a girl we like Lottie Ann. What we’re disagreeing about is that I want to go with Lottie Ann as the first name and Margret at the middle name (we’d be honoring all grandmothers that way) but my husband thinks we should use the Lottie as the first name and Ann or Anne as the middle but to still call her “Lottie Ann”. I’m worried that if Ann is the middle name people will just drop the Ann part. We’re thinking of calling her Lou Anne as a nickname or just calling her by the full name Lottie Anne.

Do you think it’s okay to have 2 first names? And if we do, will people still drop the Ann? Also, how do you give two first names? Would it be Lottie-Ann? Or Lottianne, like Marianne? Or just Lottie Ann? I have a friend with a hyphenated name and she hates it because you can’t always type the hyphen or fill it out on different forms. On the other hand, I have a name that I constantly have to spell and say for people and I feel like if we combine the names with Lottianne, we’d be doing the same thing to our daughter. But will she constantly be annoyed having to explain that she has two first names?

Also, our son’s name is Verlin, it’s not is your database and we can’t find any information on it. He was named after a grandparent. Could you add it to your database and give us some information on it?

Disney's Charlotte "Lottie" La Boeuf

Disney’s Charlotte “Lottie” La Boeuf


Thanks,
Anni

Dear Anni,

I’m not a fan of two first names, but it all depends on your culture and geographical location. In the Southern U.S. it’s a more common practice. If you do choose two first names, I’d hyphenate it to make it clear to all that you want her called by both names.

I also do not support giving a child a nickname as a given name. Especially one like Lottie which is diminutive (has the -ie sound at the end). For females, it doesn’t give them a choice of having a non-diminutive name when they grow up.

So, if it were my choice, I would name her Carlotta or Charlotte for a first name and use Anne for the middle name. At home you can call her Lottie-Anne, but remember, kids choose their own nicknames later in life and don’t necessarily keep those given to them by family.

As for your son’s name, Verlin has been added to the database!

Sincerely,
Jennifer