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Satisfyingly Similar, or Tongue-Twisting?

I am pregnant with my first and really want to find the perfect name. My name was very common growing up, and I hated it. So I want to find something that is not too popular, but not unheard of. I've been really falling in love with the name Miles for a boy, but my last name is Meyers. Does Miles Meyers sound too similar? Or does it give it the perfect ring?

–Don't Want Miles Getting Picked On

Your signature says you're worried about a son named Miles being picked on. Generally, name-teasing is a thing of the past, and a too-similar first- and last-name combination isn't something that kids would tease about. So if teasing is your biggest concern about the name, I think you can set that worry aside.

However, as you mention in your question, the two names are very similar. A not-quite rhyme (like Serena Greene) can fly because the matching sounds work together.  But a name with too many shared letters and sounds gets confusing quickly.

Some parents actively aim for alliteration in a name (in search of that "pleasing ring" you mention), while others expressly want to avoid it. With Miles Meyers, you not only have alliteration—matching first initials—but you have matching endings too, plus the same sound in the first syllable. This gives the full name just enough similarity to be a tongue-twister. That's a bigger worry than teasing.

It's sad, though, to think about giving up a name you live because of your surname. How do you feel about Milo? It's less commonly used than Miles, but still quite recognizable as a name, and it eliminates the matching-endings problem. Other options that share sounds with Miles: Eli, Ezra, Isaac, Levi, Max or Maxwell, Silas, Simon.


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January 11, 2016 12:37 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I agree, Miles Meyers is just too much. However, Milo Meyers is lovely & the tongue twister issue is completely eliminated.

Micah is another name that strikes me as similar to Miles that has a better flow with the last name.

January 11, 2016 6:48 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

It does sound a bit tongue-twisting to my ear, too.

January 11, 2016 8:32 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I think it is a bit of a tongue twister.
But I also don't think first and last names get said together enough that if you were 100% in love with it that I'd scrap it.

If you can think of something less tongue twister ish I would definitely go with that.

But if Miles is the only thing you love, I think it's a surmountable obstacle.

January 11, 2016 9:30 PM
By Juli (not verified)

I'm not sure I can actually _say_ Miles Meyers without tripping over it. /MY əlz MY ərz/: they only differ by one consonant, and that happens to be L versus R, which are related and easily confused sounds. Unfortunately, I think your surname rules out this (otherwise lovely) given name.

January 11, 2016 10:44 PM
By Sabby (not verified)

I wouldn't do it. It's confusing. My husband has the same letter for his first and last name and both names can be first or last name. It doesn't rhyme, but people switch the names all the times. Since you're having a boy I wouldn't do it. Boys are often called by their last names in sports and clubs. Miles Myers or Myers Miles? All too tongue twisting. I'm not a fan of Milo either. I love the other examples the Name Lady gave, especially Ezra.

January 13, 2016 11:43 AM
By Beth (not verified)

Like Sabby, I foresee a lifetime of swapped names with Miles Myers. Both names could be either first or last.

Also, I find "Miles Myers" difficult to say together, which could also make them difficult to hear. In my experience, first and last names get said together often--every time you place a phone call to a client or a doctor's office or countless other times, not to mention every time you introduce yourself to someone.

Two good things about using Milo instead are that "Miles" could be a nickname for Milo and that it's easier to say. However, Milo Myers could get confused with Mile O'Myers (not that anyone's name is "Mile," I'm just envisioning "huh?" reactions the first time someone hears the name).

Micah Myers sounds best to me. But if you really love the name "Miles," I would go with it. Love can't be argued with. It's a lovely name. And the potential problems are all tolerable. :)

January 13, 2016 8:01 PM
By Sasha (not verified)

Micah makes me think of Mike Meyers (the actor) or Michael Meyers (the horror movie villain).

January 13, 2016 10:23 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Miles Meyer would have been ok, but Miles Meyers is a tongue-twister.

January 14, 2016 3:30 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

In the UK we might even pronounce your surname 'MAYERS', and that makes it even more of a tongue twister with a first name of Miles. How about giving Miles as your baby's middle name instead and thinking of something completely different for his first? As others have pointed out, there are plenty pitfalls with the similarity in sound, which suggests that perhaps Miles is better left for a middle. I like Simon, myself - easy to say and spell, plus you have the Si- My- alliterative sound and the same number of syllables too.

Good luck with your first, hope everything goes well.

January 19, 2016 1:37 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

What do you think about a similar situation for a girl: Celeste Estrin? Not alliteration in the initials, but similar sounds. Very pretty, or very difficult to say? Thanks for the help!

February 16, 2016 4:49 AM
By CeeTee (not verified)

Lovely name but.. sigh..I also think too tounge-twister. Same with above Celeste. Surnames are there to stay so I'm afraid you may just have to love them & pass them by. My 1st & 2nd choice for my daughter was ruled out by our surname, so we compromised and chose a name with similar sounds. Glad we did as names are called out so often at school & hers has a good ring to it. make it easy on them if you can!

February 21, 2016 8:23 PM
By Michaela (not verified)

What about the name Nile? Similar sound to Miles but gets rid of the M and ending of s. Nile Meyers sounds good to me! :)

February 21, 2016 8:24 PM
By Michaela (not verified)

What about Nile? No M or s. Nile Meyers sounds good to me!

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