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Baby Names: Is a wroze by any other name still as sweet?

I find the stats that the Social Security Administration (SSA) releases on baby name trends to be fascinating. I love looking at the names that were popular in the 1980's (the decade God decided I should grace the world with my presence) compared to the present day. I vividly remember having a lot of little girl friends who were named "Crystal" in elementary school. We lived in Grand Forks, North Dakota at the time so maybe a lot of the mothers having little girls were fans of the TV soap Dynasty but whatever it was I have never known so many Crystal's as I did when we lived there. Curious about this insignificant detail I decided to look at the top names the SSA has recorded for 1980 - 1989. Crystal is listed as number 20 which is based on the number of Social Security cards that were registered with that name; in case you were wondering 140, 989 little girls were named Crystal during the 80's. Now let's look again at Crystal but this time look at the spelling - you have Crystal, Crystel, Krystle, Krystal, etc. There are so many different ways to spell a baby's name. When we decided to name our daughter, "Kendall," my husband and I had a long discussion on how we would spell her name. I, always wanting to be different (I mean really, I do go by the name "Bert" even though my given name is Elizabeth), wanted to spell her name "Kendyl" while my husband liked the traditional spelling "Kendall." He said that my spelling of the name reminded him of a pickle. No one's going to argue with the imagery of a pickle now are they? I think not thank you very much. We also named our oldest boy, Brennan; that could have been spelled "Brennen." So my question, does the spelling of the name change the "personality" that's associated with the person who has the name? No, a rose, if by another name would still be as sweet; Shakespeare was right about that one. My given name, "Elizabeth," has such a formal, classy persona attached to it; people see my given name and place me into a category. I don't consider myself to be formal or classy which is why "Bert" seems to fit better than my given name. My mom hates this; she calls me "Beth" and had always wanted a little girl named "Beth." Thinking about this always makes me feel a little guilty. I mean how would I feel if my daughter chose to go by another name? I've had her name picked out since I was 13 years old. Would a rose still smell as sweet? Whether we choose to use an obscure spelling of a traditional name (ahem, like Khloe) or a popular name (anyone know a ton of Jessica's like I do?), our children will have the final say in what they are called. We can choose a name but the name doesn't make the person after all, a rose if called by any other name would still smell as sweet, don't you think? NameRose
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23 comments

  • I am a huge fan of classic names and I have a hard time with common names that are spelled uncommonly. The book Freakanomics had an interesting chapter about why there was such a rise in unusual spelling of common names which boiled down to socio-economic statuses and the desire to have their children stand out. I would feel bad to give my child a name that would always be mis-spelled or confused.

    Jessica on
  • I love to try to think of baby names but agreeing on one with my hubby may not be easy….he likes names like Sarah and I like names like Sofianna….slight difference;)

    Rachel on
  • I have a little girl named Brennan. :-)

    Jill on
  • picking a name for my daughter was the hardest thing about being pregnant lol. i wanted a name that wasnt weird but not super common. I also didnt want to take a regular name and butcher the spelling bc then ppl would misspell her name for the rest of her life. I was super picky and in the end there was only one name that fit everything i wanted :) i was so happy to finally have a name! and i had several boy names that i like but only that one girl name lol

    Sarah Hayes on
  • I hear ya on the Beth thing. It’s not really awesome. Haha I tried to tack on my middle name to make it a little less . . . blah, but nothing. By the time I decided that I hated my name, it was already too late. I was 21, and everyone already refered to me as “just Beth” and thought Beth Ann was just a phase. :P

    My mother also really loved the name, and it sort of breaks my heart. I named my little girl Jocelyn. Not too common, yet still spelled traditionally correct, and we gave her the nickname Josie. This way she can choose, but still be what I want.

    If she goes with Jojo or some crazy junk, I’m going to be such an annoyed mommy!! Haha

    Beth Ann on

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