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  1. #1

    Nicknames vs Full Names?

    If you plan on calling a child by a nickname, is it better to make their legal name the full name or the nickname?

    DH and I are planning on shorter names for our children: Jude, Molly, Lily, etc. But with our short last name (Rey), I worry that having short first names might sound awkward. Because of this, I would prefer to give them longer names: Judah, Margaret, Lillian, etc. in order to flow better.

    Are there any opinions on what would be better/sound better? also, how do I convince DH that longer names are OK?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Copenhagen, Denmark
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    2,117
    Personally I prefer giving full names and then just call the kids by their nicknames.
    Nicknames are nicknames for a reason, it's sweet and affectionate versions of the full name.
    It must be so boring for a Dolly for instance, instead of naming her Dolores (or whatever) and then nicknaming her Dolly, she'll have to live with a nickname and most likely wont have a nickname because a nickname for a nickname just sounds silly.
    It's also kind of hard to take a President Dolly *something* serious. I often refer to Prince Harry of Wales' old girlfriend, Chelsy. That would just never work, Princess Chelsy? I don't think so.
    But that's just my opinion
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  3. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    4,066
    I feel like there was a similar discussion earlier this week. You might enjoy reading the posts in that thread.

    Personally I'm for a formal given name and separate nick names. I particularly enjoyed being able to change my masculine nn to a more feminine one when I was starting college and I went from my tomboy only phase to a girly-er me.

    Link to other thread: http://nameberry.com/nametalk/threads/114609-Nicknames?highlight=nicknames
    Last edited by lexiem; December 12th, 2012 at 08:08 PM. Reason: added link
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  4. #7
    thank you for the link!

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    778
    I prefer giving the full name and just using a nickname. That being said, if you genuinely despise the full name and/or another common nickname of it, I could see justification for just using the nn as a given name. I had a friend in school that was just Christie because her mom loathed the idea that she'd wind up getting called Tina.

    I think it also depends on the name. Some nicknames are almost always assumed to be nicknames, while others are more commonly used on their own. Of the ones you listed, I think Lily is the best as a stand-alone name and Molly in most need of a full name back-up. Jude sounds the most choppy with a short last name since it's the one that's the shortest on its own.

    Judah and Lillian would give the kid another option should he/she want it later in life. Margaret not only is a really solid, adult-sounding name itself, it is a wealth of nicknames.

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