Question of the Week: Worst reaction you’ve gotten?
Today’s Question of the Week was inspired by a suggestion from anniebee:
What iffy reactions have some of your choices gotten from non-name fans?
Have you ever gotten a quizzical look, a raised eyebrow—or worse—in response to one of your faves, a name known and loved on Nameberry, but which others out there in the nonberry world might never have even heard before—or else find hopelessly old-fashioned?
What is the most extreme reaction you’ve received to your name choice either while you were still considering it or after you had already used it for your child?
What was your response to their response?
Did it make you have second thoughts about the name?
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on September 28th, 2011 at 1:21 am
I was so desperate to name this 3rd baby boy that I did a lot of polls and such on other name sites and Facebook. People gave a lot of virtual “raised eyebrows” to our now fav name: Ezra Jude. When I mentioned it people just flat didn’t like it or responded in a … “really??” way. I was excited to get such positive feedback from Nameberry, from people that I felt were honest as well as broadminded when it comes to names!
on September 28th, 2011 at 1:31 am
First of all, that’s an amazing picture for this topic. Love it.
Second, the name I’ve gotten the worst reaction about is Bertram. From literally every person I’ve mentioned it to. My sister was the worst: “If you name your child that, I will deny that I’m related to them…and you.” And she was only slightly kidding.
Everyone I tell that I love the name Bertram looks at me like I just put rotten cheese under their nose. I try to soften it by saying that we would call him Bram for short, but for some reason, people just vehemently hate Bertram.
And it’s not just non-namers. I’m sure plenty of berries have this name on their Hopelessly Out of Style And Never Coming Back list.
on September 28th, 2011 at 6:55 am
About an hour after our beautiful daughter was born, my husband called his Mother (on the other side of the world) to tell her the news and introduce her first grandchild: Agatha. Her reaction? “I have to say I really don’t like the name Agatha.” Although we have moved on we haven’t really forgiven her and probably never will; we just can’t get over how she spoiled such a precious moment.
on September 28th, 2011 at 8:24 am
Our daughter’s name is Lucy Beatrice. When I tell people this, most say, “I LOVE Lucy” and I get the eyebrow raising over Beatrice, but we love it and it has personal meaning in that it was my husband’s grandmother’s middle name. Lucy is for my grandmother’s middle name of Lucille. I was set on her being Daphne when I was pregnant, and apparently my husband got a lot of negative feedback on that, so he wouldn’t agree to it. We also considered calling her Eliza to mixed response. People either loved it or hated it. I’d still consider Eliza for another child or Daphne for that matter. I didn’t want to use Eliza this time because if we only have 2 children, with our son being Henry, it might have sounded a little “My Fair Lady” I feared. With a Lucy in between to break it up, I would feel more confident using it now.
Milo is another name love of mine and I’ve gotten ripped apart by family for that one, so will probably never happen.
on September 28th, 2011 at 8:26 am
And the worst thing that we got in response to the name “Lucy” other than the infamous show is “reminds me of “Lucifer.” Sounds like the feminine version. Now, that is just ridiculous to me.
on September 28th, 2011 at 8:26 am
I will fully admit that my father’s extreme negative reaction to the name Beau is one of the reasons we decided not to name our son that (the other reason was that, from the get-go, everyone was spelling it “Bo” and that really annoyed me.) My dad, who is usually very even-keeled, went so far as to yell out his car window at me one time as he was leaving our house, “Don’t name that baby Beau!!!!” He was adamant that a child named Beau would get his a$$ kicked every day at school. To this day, I’m still amazed at his extreme reaction.
However, the worst comments/reactions to a name I’ve ever heard were to my own name, Greer. I’ve had people call me “Queer” and “Rear” to my face. Even offhand comments like, “That’s….different” are frequent and vaguely insulting. Like, how would you feel if you said to someone, “Hi, my name is Jen” and people were like, “That’s….tired and ubiquitous.”
(Not that I have a problem with the name Jennifer, of course!)
on September 28th, 2011 at 9:02 am
Our second son’s name, Bastian, was met with the most criticism of our 3 children by far. Our immediate families were happy with it, but it was funny how extended family (like my aunts and cousins) felt like they even had a say in the matter. “Bastian…like bastard?” “What will his middle name be? Can we just call him by his initials?” We never let it bother us, though, because we were already so in love with it and it had meaning for us. That’s all that mattered.
LaterGator — I love the name Ezra! If our next (and last) child is a boy, he will be Ezra Julian.
on September 28th, 2011 at 9:14 am
Jennie: I must say, Bertram is wicked cool and Bram as a nickname, inspired! 😀
My worst reaction was from a now ex-friend. It was just before my Josephine was born. Her reaction to Josephine? “Eeew! why would you name a precious little baby an ugly old lady name like that?!” I shot back with “Well, I’d like her to BE an old lady someday”.
End result? My Daughter Josephine and her Daughter: Payghton. Yep. really.
Ottilieon my current list gets some weird looks, even by namenerds. Oddly is what I keep hearing. I don’t her Oddly for Ottilie. And really, how cute would a sister set of Josie & Tillie be? 🙂
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:02 am
I do not have children as of yet (I’m 19) but my list of names (for girls) has recieved raised eyebrows from many a person.
My mum’s reaction on my all-time favourite name Eliza was:
“I don’t want a grand-daughter named THAT!”
My (inward) reaction was
“The child will be mine, not yours. You’ll love her/him regardless of their name, because she is your grand-daughter/son.”
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:04 am
Before I knew that we were having a boy, I mentioned Charlotte to my mom as a possible girl name to honor my dad, Charles. She said “You CAN’T call her Charlotte! I hate that name!” Even though it’s silly, I still can’t bring myself to put it on the future girls’ list. Which is why I am trying very hard to not discuss our boys’ name list because I’m swayed by people’s opinions far too easily.
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:07 am
Right after we found out we were having a boy, I shared with my family that one of the names we were considering was Linus. Big mistake. My father exclaimed that if we called him Linus, every time he saw him he would think “anus.” It was terrible. I gave him a couple chances to try and take it back and he refused. After that we ended up keeping names very close to the vest.
We ended up with an Arlo, and frequently get the blank stare..”Oh… is that a family name?” But by far the best worst reaction we got was from the L&D nurse immediately after he was born, who asked for his name and then put quotation marks around JUST the first name on our white board! Ha!
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:10 am
My little sister told me that Arthur was a horrible, nerdy name, and that if I name my kid that, he’ll get beat up on the playground everyday. I told him she could call him ‘Ace.’ I guess the joke’s on her, since Arthur is now an up and coming name (much to my disappointment–I love to be unique!)
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:41 am
When I was pregnant with my first we told everyone that we were naming him Henry. After he was born and it was official I was told that everyone thought we had been kidding. I was more surprised than offended because I considered it such a cute (and pretty safe) choice.
on September 28th, 2011 at 12:14 pm
The worst reaction we’ve gotten is for our favorite girl name. My mother flat out said; “I hate that name. Ew.” The name is Lorelei Grace. It’s my husband’s favorite, and the name Lorelei is German and we’re stationed in Germany so it just seems to fit. And Lola Grace and Rory are both cute nicknames. I have to admit, though, it bothers me that my mom hates the name so much. 🙁
on September 28th, 2011 at 12:48 pm
I was told that naming my child Agatha would be abusive since it would encourage bullying. My family doesn’t know about Percival, they think if this baby is a boy it will be Eamonn Jr.
BTW, Bertram is on the top of our list for s future boy.
on September 28th, 2011 at 1:26 pm
Before I was pregnant with my first, my best friend told me that Annabel was a fat girl’s name. When we were actually pregnant with a girl and chose Annabel, she pretended she hadn’t said it.
on September 28th, 2011 at 1:29 pm
I really pride myself and my husband on our kids names, and for the most part everyone thought they were cute as all get out. But you KNOW my MIL had something to say about every single one? “Jack” wasn’t a real name, but a nn for John, so why not just name him John and call him Jack? Well, bc I want his name to be Jack, thats why. “Hunter” was too violent, even though HER precious son picked it bc he is an avid sportsman. “Remy” was too French (my family is from Louisiana and has a Cajun background. This one was insulting. Firt off, have you MET me?? Not to mention you just dissed my culture to my face). Finally, “Stella” was too old for a little baby girl. Now that we’re in the process of naming another girl, I can’t wait to hear what she has to say about out ultimate choice..
on September 28th, 2011 at 2:14 pm
My mother in law always rips apart my choices – and then she suggests them back to me a few weeks later when she has forgotten that she ripped them apart. My husband and I adore the name Claire and she often cringes when we bring it up. She says it’s a name well suited to an old lady, not a child and she would prefer if I we named our child Denim, Ryder or Mackinzi. We want the name of our child to have significance to us and she insn’t going to get her way. I suppose her only option is to suggest names we already expressed interest in so that she can say she chose the name. I love her enough to name my child in honor of her…but not enough to let her choose my child’s name.
on September 28th, 2011 at 2:30 pm
When we shared with my husband’s extended family that we wanted to honor his beloved grandma by naming our daughter after her, one of his aunt’s exclaimed, “NOT MYRTLE!” We had to chuckle…no, it would be her middle name, Adeline that we intended to use. 🙂 I have also suggested to my family that we might use my grandma’s first name Dorothy as a middle name if we have another. My sister promised to disown me if I did such a thing. A little disappointing that my sis does not like the name but I can get over that. 🙂
on September 28th, 2011 at 2:54 pm
My Mom and I didn’t talk for 3 weeks b/c of her reaction to our second daughter’s name. I told her we had decided on Bella Ryan to which she replied “You have GOT to be kidding me” (!)
I was so hurt! Names are very personal and she was so mean about it! Now she loves it but she’d never heard it before. (She prefers names like Peyton, McKenzie). Once she apologized it was fine but I’ll never forget the feeling. Also, she’s either been very supportive or very silent about the subsequent kiddos names- Hahaha!
on September 28th, 2011 at 3:11 pm
When my mom was born, her parents were about to name her Misty Michelle. Then my grandmother called one of her good friends with news of the birth and he said, “Misty! That sounds like a stripper’s name!” They immeidately changed it to Kara, and my mom has been eternally grateful. 🙂
on September 28th, 2011 at 3:28 pm
Adelaide was on our short list for DD #1. An uncle of mine said, “What is she, 80 years old?” Coincidentally, two babies from our Bradley class were named Adelaide in the same week our DD was born, so I’m glad we didn’t use it. When I told my sister the name we did choose – Mira Annabella – she replied simply “Oh, OK.” This time around, we agreed not to share the names on the list…but I’ve already broken that rule a couple times 🙂
on September 28th, 2011 at 3:33 pm
@crescentmoon – This seems to be the only time I’ve ever heard of a bad reaction being a good thing! lol
@littlebrownpony, I love the name Greer!
My name is Anne but I go by Annie and my own mother who chose the name! said that Annie sounded like the name of an ‘old fat lady’. I just don’t get it. I think she said it because she prefers Anne and wanted to use shock value to get me not to go by Annie but it was really rude. Every single other person in the world tells me they love the name Annie except her. It’s so strange. She is very into plain names. She wants me to name my child Mary or Jane – about the plainest names in the world. No thanks!
It seems like most of the rude ones are family members.
I’m actually guilty of this because my family is Irish, English, German, etc. and my sister married an Italian man who insisted the first born son be named Domenico after his father (I guess that’s their tradition). My family absolutely hates the name to this day because their last name is very Italian and it makes us feel like our background wasn’t honored – though that feeling was also exacerbated by other non-naming things. Reading some of these posts makes me feel bad that I ever said anything. It’s not like what we thought of the name made a difference to her husband (and therefore her) anyway.
on September 28th, 2011 at 3:46 pm
When I was about 13, I told my mother my new favorite girl’s name was Vesper. Her reply: “If you name your daughter Vesper, I will disown you.” I think (hope?) she was joking. I still love Vesper, but I probably won’t ever use it.
on September 28th, 2011 at 3:59 pm
My husband and I have very conventional, almost plain names given to us by loving parents in the 80’s. He and I are both artistic types — he’s a folk musician and I’m a faithful groupie. I have a dog (small, female) named Frank Lloyd Wright and another named Moses. We dig monikers. So when we began talking babies/names we stumbled upon my favorite name for a girl of all time: Roscoe. We could call her “Ross” or “Coco” if she decided to be fancy. I tried to share my joy with my MIL. Result: “Oh, please don’t do that to MY granddaughter!” Hold on tight, Nana. Our kids are not going to be like the other grandkids.
on September 28th, 2011 at 4:11 pm
My sister throws things at me when I start to talk to her about names. Namely, socks and a pillow. How loving. Also, my apparent best friend gave me a gift card for a book store with a note to use it to buy more baby names books… And expressly not tell her about them.
on September 28th, 2011 at 4:46 pm
My mom on learning our new daughter’s name was Cecilie: “that’s interesting. Where did you get that one from?”
Also my mom, regarding pending baby #3–“Whatever you do, don’t name that baby Rhys–a teacher at my school named her baby Rhys and all I can think of is a Rhesus [sp.?] monkey.” Of course, my husband’s secret favorite is Rhys.
Sister’s MIL on hearing her decision for her daughter-to-be “Annemarie”: “no way my granddaughter gets a Catholic name like that.” !!! (forget the fact that our family IS Catholic, and that both Anne and Marie are family names in every generation back 80 years). She went with Annabelle Marie. sigh.
on September 28th, 2011 at 5:58 pm
For the most part, I get positive reactions IRL (I think I get more disapproval online for having traditional tastes and not caring about popularity!), but both my mom and my brother ripped into a couple names on my short list when I was pregnant.
My mom on Hannah: Ew! That’s a name for a washerwoman with chapped hands and a dirty apron.
My brother on Wesley: Wesley Crusher. Everyone will hate him.
on September 28th, 2011 at 8:24 pm
My mom’s favorite thing to do when I suggest a potential future baby name is to come up with cruel nicknames that could stem from it. For example, a couple of years ago I suggested Isabel (pre-Isabella/Bella craze) as a pretty name. My mom’s response? “Isabel…is a smell.”
Never mind the fact that she named me Courtney, and I’ve spent my entire life being called variations of “Court the Wart” and “Shortney” by friends and family.
on September 28th, 2011 at 10:19 pm
We chose a fairly unusual name for our daughter: Nara. I get a lot of the “Is that a family name?” thing. (It’s not.) The rudest comments, in my opinion, are those who say, “What’s wrong with Elizabeth?” or some other more conventional name. Or those who just get quiet and then tell me what they would name their daughter, if they had one — a very conventional name, usually.
I did have some really mean comments about her name from a lady in a nursing home one time, but I’m pretty sure she can’t be held accountable for what she said.
But overall people either tell me they think the name is very pretty, or else they think her name is Nora.
on September 30th, 2011 at 5:44 pm
The worst reaction? EVERYONE hated it, with the exception of one male friend. Family, friends, strangers in the mall where I worked at the time, all negative feedback… Most comments were that the name is “nerdy,” “sounds like a farmer,” and of course, “that’s an old man name.”
Of course, Henry was born in 2000. If we were choosing the same name today the criticism would be that it’s too trendy. (roll eyes) It’s really impossible to please everyone so pick a name you love and stick to your guns!
on October 1st, 2011 at 6:18 pm
I told my sister two of our names; Annabelle and Eulalie. She said sounds like a cow’s name and people will call her ukulele. Needless to say my lips are now sealed until the baby arrives and named!
on October 5th, 2011 at 9:47 am
Our family is big on telling it like it is and most of us have no filter at all! Both my sister and I are expecting at the same time (2 weeks apart) so sharing has become a new thing. When sharing names she has “shared” a little too much in the opinion department.
My #1 choice for a little girl was BLYTHE… her response “It sounds like something you can catch!”…”as in a sickness or something!” Needless to say I’m still officially offended.
My #1 Boy’s name was TOBIAS… her response “Well I guess I could get use to it” So I’m done sharing!
on October 12th, 2011 at 1:17 am
A (hypothetical) name I liked about ten years ago was Aster Rose. Both my best friend and my boyfriend (now husband) laughed their heads off. Both said that the baby would get the name Axel Rose (as in from Guns ‘n Roses – I think!). They each said this seperately as well, with no consultation between them. Sigh. They still tease me about it too, which is a bit mean and still does hurt my feelings because I though it was a nice name.
Whenever anyone tells me their baby’s name, I get ready to say “Oh that’s lovely!” in a genuine and warm tone. That is the only correct response as far as I am concerned. It doesn’t matter if you think it is an ugly or stupid name, if the parents like it then shut up about it!
on November 7th, 2011 at 10:00 pm
My husband is a big fan of the name Zelda. So i came up with Olivia for a middle name and I would call her Zoey. Initials Z.O.E. My brother says he will punch my husband if we have a girl and he names her that. I think its pretty, but im worried that people will tease her that her father named her from a video game (which he plays alot!)
on November 21st, 2011 at 3:35 am
My family is very large and critical. When we were talking about one of my cousins who just found out she was pregnant, my grandmother made a face and said: “She wants to name it Seraphina if it’s a girl! I don’t know what to think about it!”
I don’t even try to talk about names with my Mom anymore, because I can tell by the look on her face that she doesn’t like any of my favorites (Georgiana Maeve, Isadora Pearl, Alice Mirablle, Agatha Violet, and Agnes Josephine). I also don’t mention them with my sister because she just goes “Ok. I like Salem.”
It’s very frustrating. And don’t even get me started on my friends.
on December 1st, 2011 at 6:26 pm
@littlebrownpony – I have a cousin named Beaumont nn Beau!! We are grateful for his name because his mother was considering Wolfgang…. still a cool name but this kid is definitely a Beau Beau!
I always tell my mom names that I love and she shoots them down. For example,
“I love the name Charlotte!”
“Eww. Charlotte rhymes with harlot.”
“I’m in love with Miriam!”
“I think my friends great great great grandmother is named Miriam… ” (this said with a pointed stare)
“I love Juniper nn June!”
“Why not just name her June? Juniper is so ugly and tacky!” (I am Katie not Katherine, my brothers are Jake and Sam not Jacob or Samuel)
Needless to say, I come to Nameberry to talk about names now…
on December 6th, 2011 at 4:29 pm
I get a lot of flack on wanting to use MY middle name for my daughter. My middle name is Miche’ (mih-shay). I love it, it’s unique. All of my siblings have unique middle names for their age. My brother is Joshua Cale, I love his middle name. My sister is Haylee Jo.
I’m sure my mother got a lot of neigh sayers when naming us. But we each appreciate out names. I don’t really appreciate my first name, Melissa. I find it boring.
on December 14th, 2011 at 6:05 am
@Lola: I first read “Payghton” as having a really weird sound there in the middle. Really it looks like she just wrote letters down and assumed everyone would get it, but linguistically and aesthetically speaking, this name is a nightmare. I agree with the pp who said polite affirmation is the way to go even when you hate a name, but a name is one thing, and a gross misspelling is another. “Payghton” is just terrible. (Peyton, on the other hand, is fine.)
on January 30th, 2012 at 11:15 pm
I don’t have kids yet, but I’ve been a name nerd since I was young and I tell my family and friends my favorite names all the time. The worst reaction I’ve ever gotten was from my mom when she said all of my names sound like dog names. Milo (SO not a dog’s name), Shiloh, Felix, Jasper, etc. were the ones she particularly hated.
on February 14th, 2012 at 12:41 am
I don’t have kids yet and I told a coworker the name my hubby and I plan to name our first son. Lucius Cael Packer. “That name reminds me of Lucifer.” She said. That kind of struck a chord with me but we still love it just the same.
on February 28th, 2012 at 11:06 pm
When i named my son Hanson, my 14 year old sister said, “Well, it’s a heck of a lot better than Emerson”. Emerson is my oldest son.
on April 14th, 2012 at 7:38 pm
I don’t think I’ll ever forgive my mother in law for the way she was ruthless and rude about our choice for baby names.
We told her we were expecting and since I’ve been obsessed with names for the longest time, we told them the names for a boy and for a girl: Dexter Harrison and Adelaide Grace.
For Dexter, she replied: “You mean like the serial killer?”
(Me thinking): No, as in the classic, unique name Dexter.
For Adelaide, she replied: “Kids can totally make fun of that. Addie-got-laid.”
And this is coming from the lady who nicknamed her kid (my husband) Tigger. It was just rude and unexpected since I got pretty good reviews on it. I’m only going to change Dexter to Harrison and the middle name Carroll after my grandfather. I like it better that way anyways 🙂
on April 26th, 2012 at 8:38 pm
It seems to me that people will find problems with the names you love whether you have traditional taste, popular taste, or eccentric taste. To each his/her own!
I’m lucky to have really supportive immediate family (probably because my parents gave myself and my brother unusual names and whereas my in-laws opted for very traditional names, they were open to others as well.)
Most people are okay with my kids names, although I consider them pretty tame compared to the names in store for future siblings! We’ll see what happens if I ever get to have an Eilonwy, Cirdan or Theren!
on April 30th, 2012 at 6:58 pm
When my husband told a coworker our first daughter was named Jade, he was told it was a stripper name. Also, when I told my mother we were considering Hazel for girl number two, she burst out laughing and immidatly began calling realitives to share the awful news. So, we’re considering Annabel and Sabrina now, and keeping them secret to boot!
on October 16th, 2012 at 6:53 pm
Two of the worst reactions I’ve gotten are from my younger sister and my fiance.
With my sister I had mentioned Isaac, nn Zac for my first son. She looked at me and said “It’d be Sac, like ball sack. There’s no ‘Z’ to get Zac from unless you mispell it.”
With my fiance I mentioned Delilah, one of my all time favorite names. He looked at me, grimaced and asked if I would be mad if he said he really didn’t like it/borderline hated it. It was promptly put on my GP list and the search began for a new favorite. But when we have kids it will be his child too, I won’t name them something he hates. And it could have been a much worse reaction.
on October 25th, 2012 at 9:04 pm
Well, everyone thinks my daughter’s name is made up: Anevay.
I get a lot of good responses to Valerie and Kenneth, though.
I used to love the name Rowena but my family shot it down immediately and called it “an african-american name.” That ruined it for me.
on February 6th, 2013 at 10:34 am
Our favorite baby name is Margot. So when writing out possible middle names, I wrote Margot Eleanor. My brother in law asked if I was writing a birth announcement or an obituary! How rude! It did make me consider choosing a slightly younger sounding middle name for Margot though.
on February 11th, 2013 at 12:46 pm
We wanted to name our son Wolf. It is a name both my hubby and I have loved for years. When mentioning it to people we discovered that people have a very strong reaction to it. They either love it or hate it. There was no in between. We finally got tired of people’s reactions and used is a middle name. Part of me feels sad that we chickened out and decided not to use it, but another part of me is glad we went with something a little more sensible (Luther).
on February 13th, 2013 at 11:52 pm
I’ve only shared my favourites with my husband and mum. I haven’t gotten any terrible reactions mostly because I’ve just mentioned fairly safe names. But my husband looked at me funny when I suggested William. He thinks he’ll be nicknames Willie at school and teased. Eye roll. The man has no taste.
on March 11th, 2013 at 12:41 pm
My family is actually pretty cool with my name nerdiness. Everybody else told I was a weirdo to like the name Piper. My parents said, “Cute name! When are you going to find a middle name for it? Let’s go get one Nameberry!” I love my parents. 😀
on April 25th, 2013 at 11:04 pm
When I had our first baby in 2010, people couldn’t believe I wad naming him Abraham. They snickered.They questioned.They were silent after they asked what the babies name was.
But guess what, Everytime I open up our local paper and peek at the birth announcments, Abraham shows up!
Now that it’s his name (He is SUCH an ‘Abe’) is actually his name, I get nothing but compliments. I LOVE his name!
on January 8th, 2014 at 12:52 am
My mother wanted to name me Angela and my brother Sean/Joshua. My dad said no way to her face and now I’m Elizabeth Margaret and my brother is Michael Felix. I think that’s rude of my dad.
on January 8th, 2014 at 12:55 am
Hortensia, Vesperina, and Leocadia, I have recieved horrible reactions from family and friends won’t comment. I have been told by mother-in-law ( a nurse) that they sound like diseases that are no longer in circulation. My father says that he can’t pronounce them, so he will just whistle and say ” Here kid.” He went on further to say that he will introduce the grandchild as ” Something Something Something, my grandchild, just call him kid, its easier.” :-/ Sad… but I still covet them stubbornly! 🙂
However, in regards to my sister and I’s names; we were once told that our parents were hippies. My name is Winter Fawn, and my sister is Summer Rose. We both like our names.
on January 8th, 2014 at 9:28 pm
I’m a name nerd, no kids yet, but I know my mother will think any name that isn’t her name—Johanna—is a disappointment. She has been talking about Baby Johanna since I was a baby. I don’t think she ever forgave me for not naming any of my cabbage patch kids after her. And Johanna isn’t a terrible name at all, I just don’t want to use it!
She pretty much hates every name I’ve run past her, but she has particularly venom for Estella. “Polish cleaning lady.” (She’s part Polish, so this is some weird self-loathing thing.) My husband and I both love the name Jane—so elegant and cool—but she always sighs and says, “Plain Jane.”
It’s so true that the only acceptable reaction is, “What a lovely name!”
on January 9th, 2014 at 4:00 am
My daughter Harriet is now 2 and my family STILL harasses me constantly about her name. They insist it is the most weird and ugly of any of the 42 grandkids’ names despite there being a Jethro, Hazel, Ruth, Ethne, Anders, Gideon, and Sebastian in the mix (among more mainstream names). I named her after Harriet Tubman, one of my great heroes, and I don’t really care who likes it and who doesn’t but I don’t want to keep hearing about it all the time!
on September 6th, 2016 at 12:38 pm
I know this was posted years ago but, oh well.
I used to get a boat-load of criticism online for my names. I personally thought a vast majority of it was exaggerated and unwarranted, so I decided to stop posting them and asking about them. But, as a serious name-nerd, I still feel the need to share them with someone – anyone really. So I mentioned a new favourite to my mum the other day, quite casually. Didn’t even ask for her opinion. I just said; “I’ve added Muriel to my girl list.” She turned to me quickly and said, point-blank: “That’s a sh!t name.” Thanks mum…
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