Monday, August 22, 2011

Do you and your Kids like their Names?

Do you still like the names you chose for your children? After 18, almost 16 and 8 years, I still do. (I'm not going to reveal them here for fear of whining and complaining from "outed" kids.)

Anyway, since the Man-Child is seriously considering becoming an international rock god, he's already thinking about a stage name. Because he doesn't like his own name. His name was very unusual when he was born in 1995, but a certain sodding television show made it possibly the most popular name on the planet, which makes me want to weep.  I have to agree though, it's probably not the most "rock-ish" name you could come up with so if he wants to adopt a more street-cred name, I'll allow it. (Ha!)

He quite fancies Axel, especially as it when coupled with Hargis is makes him sound menacing and Viking-esque. I reminded him that there's been another Axel in the rock world, (Rose, pictured) who's looking a bit sad and lonely now. The irony is that when I was pregnant with him, one of our friends kept insisting that Axel was a great name. I wonder if that friend's psychic.

When I was growing up I detested my name. I was christened Antonia, after a school friend of my mother. Within six weeks however, I was apparently being called Toni, prompting my grandfather to say "I thought they had a little girl" to my gran. I grew up in the North East of England and didn't meet another female Toni till I was 26 and working in London; that's how unusual it was. I dreaded introducing myself as a child because the taunt was always - "Toni?? That's a boy's name." The alternative was to tell them that my real name was Antonia, and risk having my head shoved down the loo for possibly being posh. Ah, memories.

I now think Antonia is a beautiful name, although I quiver when someone uses it for me as I only ever heard it when I was in trouble at school!

Do you know what your children think of their names? Do you even dare ask them?


  1. My seven year old's name is Lilia...her algerian grandmother suggested it,and without exception every adult she meets tells her what a lovely name it is. She, however, has told me in no uncertain terms that she wishes she had been called Emily, or failing that, Victoria. Whether this is to fit in with the rash of typically english sounding names at school ( here in the uk) such as Ruby, Daisy,Poppy, Lily etc, I don't know..but there it is..her middle name is Sabra; as yet she hasn't ventured an opinion about that !

  2. Hi, me to add that I hate the name always felt middle-aged, even as a seventies child.I wanted to be called something exotic. I read a book called Zuleika Dobson..and thought that was just the most exotic thing ever..

  3. My daughter hates her name but like you, doesn't mind the shortened version.
    My son still likes his name though there aren't any young ones by that name these days.
    I still like both their names.

    I don't mind my name, really. It isn't popular now but it used to be.
    I don't think that its possible to pick names that everyone likes.

    Axle belongs on a car...... surely!!!!! Or Axel is an ice skating move..... surely!!!!
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  4. June - that is a pretty name isn't it? As long as you still like it; I think it''d be worse to go off the name you'd picked.
    Maggie - if that's your real name, there are tons of little Maggies in the States. It's very popular.

  5. Yes, I HAVE asked my children. And they all like their names, which I look on as a personal triumph. I HATED my name. Too fancy, too unusual, always prompted a comment from someone when I was introduced, too Sloaney posh. Hated it. Was determined that all my children would have ordinary names that let them slide on by (though I did get a bit sidetracked sometimes in the late stages of pregnancy, and the occasional unusual name snuck onto the short lists). My fear was that the kids would hate their names. I could almost hear the "I HATE my name, it's so BORING", but so far, they all say they like them. Long may it last.

    7-yo once told me that she loved her name so much that she wished everyone in the world could be called it.

  6. I just asked my 9-year-old son (Oliver) if he likes his name. Answer: "I like it but it could be better." He had no alternatives. As for what I think of it? Zero regrets. It's a nice name for a little boy, and it will still be a good name when he's 92. I also like it because you don't meet a lot of Olivers here in the US (it seems more popular in the UK), but it's not too "out there." Bonus: he even looks like an Oliver, even though we picked the name before he was born.

    The only thing I dislike about my own name is that I get called Diane a lot. I'm forever correcting people. Occasionally they argue with me: "Diane ... Diana ... what's the difference?" That's when I take a chainsaw to their name and sweetly say something like, "Dick ... Rich ... what's the difference?" ;-)

  7. Iota - best explain that Iota's a pen name and not your real name ;-)

    Diana - everywhere you turn in the Uk there's an Oliver, but you're right, it's unusual here.

  8. I don't know if my children liked their names, I never asked them and they didn't volunteer the information. We always called our daughter by her middle name, but since she's an adult she goes by her first name, which is a bit confusing.

    I like my own real name as it is pronounced in Dutch, not as it is pronounced in English. It was for many years when I lived in the States and made me feel like I was someone I was not. Now I'm the Dutch version again and I like it much better. It's a lovely name.

  9. Interesting... I've never really thought about it that way round (although I disliked my own name for many years) because I thought I was careful enough to choose names that were fairly "normal".

    I was christened "Nicola" but called "Nickie" from almost day 1 by my paternal grandmother and I have no idea why. I was called by my full name up until in my late teens when almost everyone was calling me "Nickie". Now, I rarely answer to "Nicola" and my husband has never called it me.

    Hhmm lots to muse over there.

  10. I like mine, when spelt correctly. However every girl born in the same year with the same first name also had Louise as their middle name which drove me potty when I was a kid. In fact I hated it so much when my photo was taken at the local pool for a newspaper article, when they asked me my full name I gave them my sisters middle name instead, not realising that my mum would obviously find out from the article! She wasn't best pleased. Anyway, now the only thing that frustrates me is that the Finns find it quite hard to pronounce my name properly.

  11. I love my name, Amelia. When I was given it, it was unusual. Now it's quite popular, which is a bit annoying but as it's a nice name I can't really complain!

    My twin sister on the other hand hates her name. Understandably, because she received some rather unpleasant bullying at school and has even been bullied in the workplace for her name (why grown adults continue with such juvenile activities is beyond me). She is called Virginia. This is a clean site, so I'll let you work out what the 'cool' kids at school called her.

    Now the same sister is expecting a child of her own (I'm gonna be an Aunty!!!!) she's really sensitive about name choices. She wants something that's unusual, but can't be twisted into something ugly, like her beautiful name was.

  12. My kids all like their names but yes, Jackson would prefer being called Axel too. My husband wanted Otto so considering that Jax got off very lightly I'd say...Love the name Antonia!~

  13. ALW - Otto. Hmmm. I think i agree with you.

    Anon - what a shame for your sister. Such a lovely name too!

    Nickie - Nicola is quite unusual here in the US, altho' Nicole is quite common. Of course, most of them get shortened to Nickie.

  14. "His name was very unusual when he was born in 1995, but a certain sodding television show made it possibly the most popular name on the planet"

    You can be honest here. You named him "The Situation", right?

    I've met a number of Americans who are surprised that I'm called Anthony as it doesn't strike them as a very British sounding name. I think they'd rather I was called Reginald. Seems an odd comment whenever anybody has made it as I would have thought Tony Blair and Anthony Hopkins are two of the most high profile Brits in the US in terms of namme recognition.

  15. Anth - The Sitch, you got it in one!

  16. I'm Nicky too. I hated Nicola when I was younger and was always Nic/Nick at school then Nicky from uni onwards.

    I think Nicky suits me, but Nicola/Nicole is a name that should belong to someone petite, feminine and probably blonde,and I am the opposite of all of those. It just isn't me. Only my parents ever use it now.

    My son - Mark - still likes his name, though he's less keen on Kieran which is actually his first name (Mark Kieran doesn't sound right though, so we switched it).

    I'm now trying to guess what 'sodding television show' that can be. I can only think of House, 24 and Grey's Anatomy, as those are the US ones that I watch!

  17. Childrens' names = minefield!

    I don't have any children, but when my cousin was pregnant and thinking of names my Gran (great-grandmother-to-be) had very strong views on prospective names.

    In the UK names go to ways - weird or ultra-traditional. I have god-daughters with very old fashioned names; Alice, Amy and Rosie for example.

    I always hated by name - I was given a Russian name in honour of my paternal grandfather who was Latvian.

    Natasha was very unusual when I was young and couple with my foreign sounding last name meant that my name was frequently mispronounced.

    3 syllables of course were shortened. When I was young to Tasha (which I hate) so when I left home I reinvented myself as Nat!


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