I once met an absolutely adorable little boy whose name was Percy, which was not exactly one of my favorite names at the time. But this one endearing Percy managed to completely alter my perception of the name. And, picturing him, has had me defending it ever since.
Which leads us to today’s Question of the Week:
Has there ever been a name that you were coolish on, ambivalent towards or downright opposed to, about which you changed your mind completely and irrevocably once it became attached to an appealing child? Or adult, for that matter.
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on December 1st, 2010 at 2:13 am
I met a girl in college named Afton. She was so sweet, and I have loved the name since!
on December 1st, 2010 at 2:20 am
Cyrus. I watched the documentary Mad Hot Ballroom and the most endearing little guy was named Cyrus, which began my obsession with the name. Too bad my husband is vehemently opposed. 🙁
on December 1st, 2010 at 2:40 am
i never liked the name Gordon until i met one of my closest friends, now the name Gordon (nn Gordie) seems adorable.
on December 1st, 2010 at 5:16 am
I hope that’s the case. My husband and I really like the name Ursula for a future baby, but we’re getting negative responses from people. I think we have Disney’s “Little Mermaid” to thank. I hope seeing a little Ursula nn Lula might change their mind.
on December 1st, 2010 at 6:05 am
I did not get the nameberry craze for Olive, but I have to admit it has grown on me since watching Little Miss Sunshine recently.
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:48 am
Ralph! A once knew a hot-in-every-way guy named Ralph and it made me see the name as attractive and classy.
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:32 am
one of my best friends from college was named margie. no one our age was named margie, and i really hated the name (My grandmother’s named Marge so it really had an old lady feel to me). but she is so cool and nice and super funny that i LOVE the name margie now.
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:48 am
Hasn’t happened to me in a looooooong time! But yes, Margery. When my cousin was born (I was 8), I remember thinking “ewww”. But then I met her, got to know her and have loved the name Margery ever since! I’m waiting for an adorable Walter or Peter since those are the two boys names I really dislike. No offense to anyone who likes them, I’ve just never met a nice guy, of any age with either of those names.
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:52 am
Felix. I always thought of the cat. My friend named her son that and he fits the name. Felix means happy, and he’s a very happy boy.
on December 1st, 2010 at 9:31 am
Actually a towheaded, dimpled Henry did that for me many years ago. I had always thought of it as an old man name before I met this kid and I suddenly saw it in an all-new light. It’s actually a little too popular now for my taste, but I still think Henry is a great name for cute little boys!
on December 1st, 2010 at 9:58 am
When I was in college a friend’s sister named her son Forrest. I thought it was a terrible curse at the time, but after meeting and babysitting for this MOST adorable child – I fell in love.
on December 1st, 2010 at 10:23 am
Yes! This has happened to me several times. Sometimes because of movie and TV characters, such as George (Grey’s Anatomy) and Desmond (LOST). My husband is another prime example. His name is Kevin, which I used to HATE. But his personality and good looks totally changed my perception of the name. I still don’t love it when I hear it on other people, though. But it’s perfect for him!
Some really close friends of mine had a baby and named him Sebastian, which I despise. I thought because I love his parents and him, I would grow to love the name, but I still find myself not loving the name 2.5 years later.
on December 1st, 2010 at 10:34 am
This has happened with the names Arvid, Alan and Sawyer. All now belong to adorable little boys!
on December 1st, 2010 at 11:39 am
I’m not big on boy names on girls (not speaking of unisex ones like Taylor, Morgan etc) but I recently met some a darling Parker and Adler who are both girls. I also never cared for the nicknames Hank or Hal until recently…now they’re both on the OK’d list as nicknames if we name our son (due in March) Henry.
Another name I never cared for was Frances until meeting a lovely young woman of the same name who went by Francie. It ended up becoming a top contender for baby #3 had he been a girl (the bonus was that it was my husband’s grandmother’s name).
Too bad I can’t change my husband’s mind on some of my family names, e.g. Rufus, Harry and Grady. 😉
on December 1st, 2010 at 12:23 pm
I once taught a female student in Denmark named Fie (pronounced Fee) and I have loved the name ever since — even though I do hear “Fee Fi Fo Fum… I smell the blood of an Englishman!”
on December 1st, 2010 at 12:54 pm
Brigid. I always preferred the “T” sounding ending of the name, Brigitte, and the elegance of it’s formality, until I met my best friend 20 years ago. Now I think it is the cuter version of the name. We call her Bir.
on December 1st, 2010 at 1:07 pm
Addison – on a boy. I had never even considered the name until Addison Sheppard on the show Grey’s Anatomy came along. And then it was definitely a trendy GIRLS name for me. After researching it, I found it was originally a BOY’s name – but to me it seemed girly.
Then I met the most adorable, handsome 18 year old boy working at Foot Locker, selling tennis shoes. His name was Addison and it seemed so handsome and kinda rugged on him. Because of him, Addison is and always will be a BOY’s name – and one that I have a soft spot for.
on December 1st, 2010 at 1:28 pm
Elijah. It was always so stuffy and biblical sounding to me, but my aunt and uncle named one of my cousins Elijah. At the time I had to bite my tongue, but he’s just such an adorable, charismatic, charming little 4 year old that I can’t help adore the name now. His parents hate the nn Eli so we don’t call him that, even though I think it’s kinda cute.
on December 1st, 2010 at 2:16 pm
Lionel, the adorable little boy in the movie “Because I Said So” made this name seem like a possibility for me.
on December 1st, 2010 at 3:56 pm
My cousin named her baby Calista. At first, I was pretty reticent about loving the name, but I knew she was my new baby cousin, so I accepted it. Now, I just love it. The nickname Callie is adorable and fits her perfectly.
on December 1st, 2010 at 4:31 pm
My daughter’s friend is named Bridey, which I thought was a pretty ridiculous name, but she is just the sweetest child that now I can’t help but smile when I hear it. It’s still pretty rare, and probably too adventurous for me, but I still think it’s adorable.
on December 1st, 2010 at 5:04 pm
This has happened to me a million times. I can’t think of many examples, though. Oh, my niece Madison is the most gorgeous girl and she’s the only Madison I personally know, so the name just makes me think of her.
Toy Story 3 made me fall madly in love with Bonnie! I wasn’t all that fond of it before, but now it’s a favorite. I mean she’s just the cutest kid in the world. It also made me kind of like Daisy, not enough to use it, but enough to like it (I hated it before).
on December 1st, 2010 at 6:57 pm
This happened to me a lot as a preschool teacher and also in reverse, where I liked a name and then met a little person to change my mind about it.
The lastest ones are a friend’s daughter named Presley (so cute and fits her so well) and a boy named Silas.
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:10 pm
Linus. I babysat a 1 and a half year old named Linus who was just about the sweetest baby in the world. When my cousins were having their child, they wanted to name him Linus. I defended them, but the rest of the family was against it so they went with Nathaniel.
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:11 pm
My best friend’s name is Kathleen. I never really cared for it until I met her, but now I like it. Same for Colleen, Brenda, Alan.
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:20 pm
The little girls in Despicable Me – Edith, Agnes and Margo. I already liked Margo but I HATED Edith and Agnes until seeing that movie. I left the theater wanting a little Agnes of my own. 😉
In real life, kids have also made me fall in love with Abigail, Henry, Evan, Shiloh, and Lucielle.
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:21 pm
I worked with a little boy named George who I absolutely adored. I can’t even type about him without smiling! For me, George is evergreen. Same with Martin. Not my all time favourites, but special to me regardless and definitely on lists for middle names.
Kisha Cooper Said
on December 1st, 2010 at 10:18 pm
The name Ripley reminded me of a psycho (channeling Jack the Ripper) until I ran across a girl who worked at a store I frequent. She is absolute nicest chick ever! I could soooo use Ripley in the very near future.
on December 2nd, 2010 at 1:04 am
My grandmother was a Ruth, but until I met a young Ruthie a few years ago, I had never really seen the name in all its adorableness. I met Ruthie along with her parents and the whole family was just so darn likable. Ruth is not my top name choice for a girl now, but its definitely top 10.
on December 2nd, 2010 at 2:01 am
I completely agree with millikate that being a teacher constantly changes your perception of names for better or worse based on one child. In my classroom, I have seen 4 Ethan’s cross my path. the first three were terrors, I had forever written off Ethan. But just a month ago I got a new Ethan to my room and he is amazing…completely changed my opinion of that name. The biggest fear I have is that one of my favorite names walks through my door and ruins that name forever… sigh….
on December 2nd, 2010 at 6:44 am
Allegra. I always thought of the allergy medication, but then I saw a little girl named Allegra at the park and now I love it.
on December 2nd, 2010 at 8:19 am
I have had the opposite happening. I used to like the name Rose, until I met a woman named Rose who did something horrible to me. Now I can’t think of the name without thinking of the woman, and I would never use it.
on December 2nd, 2010 at 9:51 am
Cristina and Moses. I’ve never liked Cristina, and Moses always seemed like an old man… But then I went on a mission trip to Argentina this summer, and Cristina and Moses were two of our student translators, and they are such awesome people! I would totally name a kid after Cristina, and Moses’s name fit him so perfectly that now I love it 🙂
on December 2nd, 2010 at 1:28 pm
This happens to me a lot. Often I dislike a name on paper and then start liking it when I meet a real person with the name, or a movie/book character, even if they aren’t the nicest person. I think it helps me to see a name as “real” and usable rather than an abstract collection of syllables.
Not sure if this counts, but as a writer I like to “rehabilitate” names by giving names I’m ambiguous about to major characters. Now I love several names I used to dislike/not care about, such as Alice, Lionel, Daisy, Susannah, Lily, Allegra…
on December 2nd, 2010 at 5:37 pm
Usually people ruin names for me. On my entire list of names that I love/like/semi-like there are very few that include names of people I actually know. There a couple of names though that I have changed my mind about because of people. Most names that I now like are from characters or people I don’t know though.
I used to hate Henry until Eric Bana in Time Travellers Wife made me love it.
I also really disliked the name William until I fell in love with Billy on So You Think You Can Dance.
I used to think Bryony was such a weird name but now I have a friend named Briony and she is just the loveliest girl. There is nothing wrong with her. It makes me love it so much.
Chandler = Friends = Love
My one friend has a friend named Cosmo. He’s adorable and I’ve heard he’s a really nice guy.
I always disliked Dallas until I fell in love with Dallas Winston and obviously nickname Dally.
Always disliked Elizabeth but since being part of the cast for Crucible, I really like the name.
Jeremy (Jem) because of To Kill a Mocking Bird. I love it now!
Ian was never a great name for me but now it just reminds me of the sexy australian exchange student at my school when I was a senior.
Used to greatly dislike Morgan until I met a Morgan at a camp I went to and kind of fell for her (and it was partly because of her I realized I was bi). We lost touch but the name still holds special meaning.
Micah used to be weird in my mind but a member of a band I like changed my idea of the name.
I used to hate Philip (mainly because of Phil–eww) but now I love it since meeting a hot German boy (and discovering adorable nickname, Pip!)
Ruth = Another character from the Crucible.
Rufus = character from Gossip Girl
Veronica = character in the last song. I love Ronnie now!
Sebastian = Used to hate. Don’t love it but the character in She’s The Man made it more likeable.
on December 2nd, 2010 at 8:46 pm
@Lola–If you are specifically looking for positive associations for the names Walter and Peter, I suggest you watch Fringe! Those are the names of a father and son who are main characters on the show, and I definitely think they count as “good influences”! As a matter of fact, Fringe has really helped Walter grow on me. Probably wouldn’t have given it a second thought before, but now I think it’s kind of sweet!
on December 2nd, 2010 at 11:58 pm
Well, I always thought Irene was an old lady name, until I read a book series about Irene Adler (the character from the Sherlock Holmes story A Scandal in Bohemia), and her best friend/narrator Penelope (Nell). I love Irene (and Penelope, too!) now.
on December 3rd, 2010 at 12:04 am
Totally. Rilla (from the book Rilla of Ingleside) and Lancey are two of my favorite names now from reading books. I seem to have a problem with that. After I read a good book I suddenly LOVE the name of the main character. ;P I can’t think of any names I used to hate and now I love though.
on December 3rd, 2010 at 1:04 am
opposite effect- i used to love the name Lacey, then i met on one-and got to know her quite well- she was a cheating manipulating woman who would have numerous boyfriends and girlfriends in the 2 years i was in the same sphere of people. i no longer care for the name.
on December 3rd, 2010 at 2:56 pm
Vincent. I always thought this was ridiculous and clunky on a child, until I met an adorable little Vincent who totally pulled it off.
on December 3rd, 2010 at 11:49 pm
Toy Story 3 did this to me with Bonnie too! She was the most adorable looking little girl. Such a sweet little personality…love it!
Lois would be another one. My cousin named her now 5 year old daughter Lois and I was just shocked! But she is a Lois from head to toe and absolutely the cheekiest little girl…love her!
Russell from UP!!! I am loving Russell now…but it still makes me think of the dog Jack Russell.
on December 4th, 2010 at 6:27 pm
A song did this for me once – Sweet Afton, as recreated by Nickel Creek. I’d never heard the name Afton before, but when I realized it was a name it hit my list lickety-split.
Another name is Rebecca. It was an “eh” sort of name, one I really didn’t love or hate. But then I met the girl who became my best friend for the very short time I knew her, and who changed my view on stuff. It went from an “eh” to a middle at the very least for a future daughter.
I like Seth for a girl (in a story; I’d never do that to a real child). Probably because every (and I mean EVERY) Seth I’ve ever met has been somewhat effeminate. I really want a Seth to come around and change that.
A name that has been done the opposite: Margaret. It was also an “eh” name, but then I met one, and I can’t stand her. So it’s been thoroughly nixed.
on December 5th, 2010 at 2:41 am
Meeting gorgeous little Kelsey, Caroline and Jasper made me reconsider names that I felt boring or unfitting at the time.
on December 6th, 2010 at 1:58 pm
The name “Phineas” in Welcome To Temptation. But that’s neither a kid nor a real life example…
on December 6th, 2010 at 3:35 pm
Silas was one I was unsure of until I met a baby Silas who was the sweetest thing. Same with Gus. Two sweet little blond boys. Now when I hear those names I smile.
On the other hand, I’ve had the opposite happen to me as well. One of my nieces is named Kylie – a name I once thought was sweet, stylish, and pretty…she’s 6 now and unfortunately she’s kind of a brat. I don’t like the name as much now. 🙁
Diana Alarcon Said
on December 10th, 2010 at 11:08 am
Asia. I thought it sounded ditzy and sort of pretentious until I got to know that little girl. Now I think it is brilliant.
Birth 2 School » Blog Archive » Name Mind-Changers – Baby Name Blog – Nameberry Said
on December 15th, 2010 at 7:40 am
[…] the rest here: Name Mind-Changers – Baby Name Blog – Nameberry Related Posts:Cool Name Sightings? – Baby Name Blog – Nameberry November 24th, 2010 at 9:09 […]
on December 20th, 2010 at 3:57 pm
While working at a production company I noticed that a little girl named Saffron was coming in. Saffron, I thought?!!? A spice? A rather tasty one, but why would someone name their daughter after that? Then she came in. She was the cutest, sweetest little girl and somehow it fit her perfectly. While I still wouldn’t use it myself, I have definitely developed a soft spot for it and wouldn’t mind is being used by someone else!
on December 22nd, 2010 at 3:34 pm
Seth. I used to associate it with the fat kid in class who always got made fun of. But then I had a little boy in my day camp class when I was a counselor who was named Seth & he was the sweetest most well-mannered little child and the name grew on me.
Jamie Abigail Said
on January 7th, 2011 at 12:25 pm
Juilen. I used to know the most adorable guy named that and I became obsessed with that name. Then One Tree Hill added a Juilen to the show and he is very attractive…then a friend of mine named their son Julien and he is the sweetest most adorable baby ever. So I will definitely consider this name.
On the opposite side…Names I used to like until people I know ruined them are: Sydney, and Cassidy.
on February 13th, 2011 at 10:25 pm
I used to be a stickler for traditional names, like Ellen and Sarah. Then I met the sweetest French family!
Their girls are Soleil (means sun in French!) and Élodie, nn Ellie. They’re so cute! Since I’ve met them I’ve branched out in my naming styles, and I now like so many more names! My current favorites are Ellery (nn Ellie), Liberty, and Ariana (nn Ari).
on March 15th, 2011 at 11:28 pm
Before reading the Harry Potter books, I disliked names like Harry, James, George, Fred, Hugo and whatnot, but now I think they’re awesome names.
I also disliked the name Percy as a child, because there was this creepy doll in my Raggedy Anne books that was named Percy. But a few movies and books with heroic and otherwise awesome Percys, I now think it is definitely a considerable name.
John Lennon and Paul McCartney changed my views on their names, too 🙂
on March 25th, 2011 at 11:57 pm
I disliked the name Imogen the first time I heard it but my sister was seriously considering using it until we found out I was getting a nephew and now I can’t shake the name. I love the history behind it! I think it’s so pretty for a little girl and I am kind of sad we won’t be adding a little Imogen to the family yet…
on May 8th, 2011 at 5:02 pm
I had an opposite experience with the name Seth than some of the earlier posters. The first Seth I came across was very successful yet down to earth. Very well spoken. I fell in love with the name and named my son that 8 years ago now. I love it because you can’t mispell it and he is the only one in the school with that name unlike the 3 Andrews and multiple Emmas ( Emma Kate, Emilie, Emily, Emerson etc)
I once knew a girl named Brett. Not sure if it was a family name but she was a beautiful girl with a lovely personality. More reserved than her younger sister Paige. I never would have thought of that for a girl but have liked it ever since.
on May 10th, 2011 at 12:05 am
I dated a Joey and it was one of the worst relationships of my life – abusive – the whole nine yards. I didn’t think anything could change seeing his face in my mind when I heard that name, until some friends named their 2nd baby Josiah. His older sister (whom I adored) called him Joey almost from the beginning, and hearing that 3 year old sweet voice saying Joey completely melted any previous animosity toward the name.
on May 11th, 2011 at 3:06 pm
This has happened to me a few times.
The first time was with the name Avery. My mom’s friend told me she was going to name her son that. I thought “EW”. But he’s the cutest little guy EVER. I love him to pieces (he’s 6 now) and now I love the name. It’s a TOTAL boys name to me and I really just do NOT get people that stick it on their girls. I know 3 boys named Avery (the other 2 I met after the 6 year old was born) and my co-worker’s going to name his daughter Avery. She’ll be the first girl Avery I know IRL and it kills me.
The next time was Alba from The Time Traveler’s Wife. Heard it & fell in love by the end of the movie. The little girl was so cute & I liked her personality.
The last one was Bo from Signs. I would’ve NEVER thought to use that name…ever. But It fit her perfect & she was my favorite character in the movie. Now I love it, although I still won’t use it.
Some of my friends and family hate the name Aeson, but I’ve loved it for years now. It will be my first son’s name, so I hope it really grows on them when they see him.
on May 14th, 2011 at 11:19 am
Amen to Jennifer on “Phineas” from Welcome to Temptation!
Also, totally in love with Henry (and Clare) after reading The Time Traveler’s Wife.
on May 16th, 2011 at 2:10 am
The opposite happens to me most of the time, actually. I used to love the names Reagan, Ciara, Rayne(for a middle name), Tyler, and Anthony. But once I met people in real life with those names, I would never consider giving my children any of those names.
I am now obsessed with a few names, most all of them starting with vowels. I would write them on here, but two of them are names I thought up on my own, and when I looked them up on the computer, they were very rare. I’m hoping to keep it that way. =)
I did meet a Jaden. I didn’t like her, or her name, but then we got to know each other and I now love her name, except that I would spell it Jayden.
on June 10th, 2011 at 9:35 am
I had always been so opposed to Izzy, but my neighbor was born last year and was given the name Izzy, and it just fits him so perfectly. I now think it’s adorable!
on June 22nd, 2011 at 1:33 am
I relate all names to people in my class so that Austin seems an arrogant snob and Nicole is always the brat that ruined my life. My bff is a Savannah and I love her to pieces as do I to the name. I find Anna a generic name most likely because I know a bunch, all with completely diff personalities. Sheyenne/Cheyenne (however you want to spell it) is a hated name to me. I probably would think of it as pretty if I hadn’t met her. She stared at me….creepily.
A name I grew to love is Eli. At first it seemed weirdly old man. Then I met a really cute little kid who completely changed my view.
I would have never thought people could influence names so much!
on June 29th, 2011 at 7:54 am
Lola, my son and husband are Peter. (and my FIL… and my chiropractor… and my “glasses guy.” We joke that we know we’ve found a good professional if his name is Peter. It’s also the name of a selectman in my town and our local state rep.)
I wanted to find a picture of my son to show you but none are public except here, when he was born: http://petercooperjr.livejournal.com/2009/12/14/
He’s 1 1/2 now and so cute.
on November 7th, 2011 at 10:58 pm
@Carolyn: Maybe a different spelling? 😉
on December 27th, 2011 at 2:52 am
Yes I never used to be a big fan of Katie and Eve or Eva. Until I met an adorable Katie. Katie now has a super cute little sister called Eve and my second cousin has a daughter called Eva Another name is Lily and Finlay. Both used by second cousins. Eulaila. I never knew about it until I read a Rose for the ANZAC Boys and the character was so inspiring.
A name that has been ruined for me is Bryn, Brynn and Brynne because of Brynne Edelstein. She is so annoying.
on July 6th, 2012 at 10:03 pm
The opposite happened 2 me. I thought the name Katie was ADORABLE until I met a girl who tricked me, physically abused me, mentally abused me, mentally abused me, molested me,and more. Now I absolutely, positively, HATE. THAT. NAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
on September 28th, 2012 at 11:31 pm
iI met an Olivia who was so polite and sincere. Ever since, I’ve loved the name Olivia. Another was Nolan. I met an extraordinary young boy named Nolan.
on February 16th, 2014 at 4:20 pm
I always felt that way about Arthur, sounded really old & stuffy. Then met a really cute little boy & now it sounds cool
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