Question of the Week: Is a nickname enough of a name?

June 30, 2010 Linda Rosenkrantz

It’s a trend that took off first in the UK, with prams populated by baby Archies and Alfies, Edies and Ellies—and now it has definitely crossed the ocean–the idea of going straight to the nickname and skipping the full, formal name completely.

We see boys being christened Sam and girls christened Sam, boys named Charlie and girls named Charlie.  Among those that made the Social Security list this year, were, (in addition to nicknames long legitimized and accepted on their own, such as Max, Molly, Jack, Jake and Kate) : Gracie, Katie, Andy, Maggie, Ellie, Allie, Abby, Lexi, Josie and Angie; and on the starbaby lists we see  Joe, Edie, Sunny, Johnnie (girl), Hal and Hank, Millie and Billie and Birdie and Bob.

Our question to you is: Do you think a nickname name is enough of a name?  They’re cute and friendly and spunky and some of them like Lottie and Letty have a definite nostalgic appeal, but is there a sense of incompleteness?  Will a boy christened Will wish he could put William on his college application? Will a woman named Izzy feel that her name has never grown up and matured as she has?

Where do you stand on this question?  Nameberry wants to know.

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