Monday, August 28, 2006

Baby Naming Trends to Avoid

By Brandi M. Seals

It seems now days as if everyone wants their child to have a totally unique, one of a kind name. I'm all for unique names, but at some people are taking things too far and naming their kids absolutely atrocious things. Actor Jason Lee has a son named Pilot Inspektor, actors David Duchovney and Tea Leoni have a kid named Kyd. The examples in the celebrity world are endless, but it seems these ridiculous naming trends have begun to trickle down into the lives of every day people.

Avoid naming your kid something that he or she will need to change later. Anything that will get their butt kicked should be avoided along with tongue twisters. Avoid these common naming mistakes and your child will thank you someday.

1.) Creative Spelling - People seem to want to throw y's in any name these days and otherwise just spell things wrong. I have seen things like Violet spelled Vylot; Jackson spelled Jaxon; and Daisy spelled Daysey. While some people may not like non-traditional spellings, I say some are not that bad. Those like the examples given show that different spellings are not that bad as long as you can still make out what the name should be.

However, some people take creative spelling too far. Some people spell some names so differently that one cannot easily determine what the name is. For example, Ansley has become Ainsleigh. Kylie is now Kyly. Casey has become Kaycee. How about the name Layne'? How would you pronounce that? Lane? Maybe Laynie? Do not make people confused. If someone must pause for several seconds to figure out what name they are attempting to read, then you have gone too far. Cut back on the creative lettering, your child will appreciate it.

2.) Stupid Names – Being different is great. Being too different is not. Growing up in the 80s I had enough trouble with the name Brandi. Before the name really caught on I was constantly asked if my name was Brandon and why on Earth would anyone name a girl Brandon. And really I don't think my name was that odd at the time but it does take people awhile to warm up to things. So why are people naming their kids things like Apple?

I read through the birth announcements in the local paper ever week and there are always a handful of names that are just plain awful. For example, this past week featured names like Creek Ashton, Yeni Yazmin, Thorin Isaiah, Aneyia Small, Esmeralda Consuelo, Ledessa, and America Rose. That is from a newspaper in Northwest Arkansas. I can only imagine how 'creative' the names have gotten elsewhere. Basically a good rule of thumb is to name your kids something creative but not so creative that she will get her butt kicked just for having the name. Or, at least let them go by a nickname.

3.) Poor Paring of First and Last Names - Sometimes I guess these things are just overlooked by the parents, but when deciding what to name your kid please take your last name into consideration. Since my last name is Seals, you can be sure I will never get the urge to be creative and name my kids something like Artic or Easter. I will also be careful not to create bad initials. There is no Ashley Samantha in my future because her monogram would read A.S.S.

Some people embrace these sorts of names that can cause embarrassment. I have seen someone with the last name Oates sporting the name Barley Buckwheat. His parents were just mean. How does one go through life being Barley Oates? I have also seen Steve Stephens, Hugh Hughes, and several other doubled up names like these. So as much as you might like a name, if it makes some sort of quirky name when paired with the child's last name, it is probably best to pick something else.

4.) First and Middle Names that do not go together – This rule can actually be overlooked for the most part. Most people don't use their middle names too often and really only family and friends are usually aware of the name. For that reason, I say go crazy with the middle name. If you have a burning urge to name your kid Yayabella or other bizarre name, use it as the middle name. But, if you want to give your kid a really good name, make sure the first and middle name go together as smoothly as the first and last name do. August and Azarai do not go together and neither do Jessica and Marlene. Just say the names together a few times. You should be able to tell if they sound good together.

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