Sometimes it's harder to name that second (or third, or fourth) baby. When we make such a big decision, parameters or restrictions can be helpful, since they narrow down our options. But as you've seen, they also lock us out of some our favorites. If your firstborn is Abraham, you probably can’t use Lincoln for your second, no matter how much you love it. Ditto for Sara and Clara or Jack and Jill.
A few years back, I offered some thoughts on too-close-for-comfort names: "Are other people likely to get the two names mixed up? If you holler upstairs to one child, will your kids be able to tell who you're asking for? Does it feel like you gave each child a distinct identity?" In that same post, I advised against rhyming names, which puts Ollie right out of the running for your family. Oliver, though, is trickier.
-- Momma 2 5
You're facing a sad irony of baby naming. It's the parents who put in the most effort -- spending months agonizing over the name, determined that their choice be "just perfect" -- who [LINK]face the greatest chance of regrets. The process ends up numbing your gut feelings about what you love, while raising your expectations to unreachable levels.
The good news is that you've chosen a fine name. If you keep it you'll almost surely find that your daughter grows into it, and you'll end up loving it as part of her.
-- Searching Mom
Let me start by pointing out what you didn't ask: "Who were some prominent women in the Bible?" Chances are you're already familiar with women like matriarchs Sarah and Rebecca, and with Mary and Elizabeth, the mothers of Jesus and John the Baptist. I don't even think you'd be satisfied if I pointed you toward additional admirable women whose names are less common, like Eunice and Dorcas.
So what is it you're looking for? My guess is your question could be rephrased as, "Where are all of the girls' names to go with boys like Elijah, Gabriel and Josiah?"
I haven't heard of it, but it's a timely update on tradition that could certainly work. After all, there are Juniors called Deuce for "second" and Thirds called Trey and Trip. That style of nickname can help distinguish father and son better than "Big Tim" and "Little Tim" -- and they're often more stylish than traditional nicknames, too.
We plan to have more children together, and it's always been important to me to change my name to my husband's so that everyone in the family has the same last name. But I'm really torn here. I don't want his 8-year-old daughter to feel like I'm "stealing" her name, or to resent me for it now or later in life. I also expect that it may cause some confusion with mail, official documents, etc.Unfortunately our name is so short that going by a nickname isn't a possibility.
Am I dooming her (and us both) to a lifetime of confusion: "Nooo, thats my Stepmother, Marie B Clark, I'm Marie A Clark." Or am I overthinking this?
- Evil Stepmother, the Name Thief
Rest assured, you're no Name Thief. You and your soon-to-be stepdaughter are just the victims of bad name luck. But as in so many family naming dilemmas, the right path will depend on relationships as much as names.
You've mentioned that you're nervous about becoming a stepmother, which is natural. How well have you gotten to know the kids? Do they know yet about their dad's upcoming marriage, and if so, how do they feel about it? And critically, how does Dad himself feel about the name conflict?
-- Lennon Lover
It seems like you're asking two different questions here, Lennon Lover. The first: Do I, the annointed Name Lady, think your favorite name is okay for girls? And the second: Should you let a name dream die when it meets with overwhelming disapproval?
- Time Warper
Charlotte isn't a typical name for a 30-ishwoman, but why should it be? One of the joys of changing your name is that you get to choose a new identity that fits you and your taste today, not whatever your parents liked a generation ago. There's nothing wrong with being fashionable, or sharing your name with a younger set.
The problem is, it basically rhymes with my first name. I don't want the actual name printed, but think, "Ashley Blimey."
My middle name is Laura, which could sufficiently break up the rhyming. Should I change my first name to Ashley Laura, and introduce myself as such -- even though it's a mouthful and risks annoying people or coming across as pretentious -- or just include Laura whenever I say my full name, and risk people leaving it out and calling me "Ashley Blimey?" Are there other solutions I'm not thinking of?
- The Future Mrs. Blimey
When we name babies, we custom-select first names to pair attractively with our surnames. Marital names, though, are pot luck. The wheel of romantic fate spins, and the new name candidate may be lovely, ridiculous, or anywhere in-between.
-- Too Pale for Leila?
Would it reassure you if I told you that Leila doesn't really mean "dark-haired beauty"?
Baby name dictionaries aren't like the dictionaries we're used to, that describe what a word signifies and how it's used. Instead, they burrow into history to find the name's linguistic roots. Imagine looking up the word "spoon" in Webster's and getting the definition "splinter of wood (Proto-Germanic)." That's the baby name dictionary experience.