Thursday, June 17, 2010

the name game

my name is karen and i didn't like it at all until i was well into adulthood. i never had a nickname and always wanted one. come to find out, my parents gave me this name because it couldn't be shortened nor could they think of any nickname that could come out of it. so, i have always been (just) karen. kind of blah when you're a kid, i suppose, but it's been quite nice that i don't have a really common name. those of you that know my maiden name will surely agree that karen was the best of choice of the parental considerations, the other choices being linda and cynthia. no offense to women with those names, but can y'all imagine me having to go through life as cynthia s-----d??? GAG!!!

my dad was a junior and hated it so there was no way my brother was going to be a 3rd! also, he went by his middle name, which he also disliked. he spent virtually his entire life being called by his first name and having to explain that he went by his middle name.......apparently that was quite a frustrating chore at times, so out of that came the fact that both my brother and i were given the names the parents wanted us to be called as first names; end of confusion. i happen to like this idea and did the same with my kids and i hope they will do the same.

my ex-husband, my father and father in law all had the same first name and none of them went by it.....2 middle name users and a nickname all his life, respectively. but to honor all of them, that first name is marshall's middle name.....kind of cool i think. but i hope he will not give the name to his son unless it is also a middle name and he is called something else. as for how marshall got his name, i had a high school boyfriend with the name and always loved it because it was not something you heard all the time. but after he was born, we found out that his paternal great grandmother's mother's maiden name was marshall! got a family name in there without even knowing it.

allison's father decided on her name and it, too, was the name of a former "flame". we had not heard the name often at the time of her birth, but it has ended up being a fairly common name for her generation. there were times when she was younger that she wished for another name and even asked a time or two about using her middle name so she wouldn't be lost in the crowd. i really hate that for her. i had the hardest time deciding on a middle name for her; in fact the hospital business office was on the verge of threatening me to come up with something so they could finish her paperwork. a few years ago, allison thought she would give her middle name to her daughter, but i think now she's leaning in a different direction.

i always wished my maiden name was one that would've worked nicely as a first name for either of my kids, but it just really isn't....and that makes me especially sad now that my brother has no children and the family name will die with him. my mother's maiden name would've made a good boy name, but i just have one son and i like his name very much. i have a friend that gave both her daughters her maiden name as a middle name.....don't quite get that, but hey, to each his or her own, right?

naming your baby is exciting but also important. we can't be too cutesy nor should we be too far out because the child will have the name his or her entire life, barring any legal name changing that is. it's a daunting task. as one who has always had to spell out her last name--all 3 of them!--i would also like to say that crazy spellings of first names is a no-no to me. there are lots of unisex names out there now and while different may be neat, i would always wonder if my daughter felt we really wanted a boy when we named her taylor, for example......or if the son felt the same way by being given the name cameron. i'd also wonder if that cute little baby girl named brandy or candy or sissy would have trouble being thought of seriously as an adult, especially say if she were to become an attorney. as i said, naming your child is a daunting task. you also need to make sure his or her initials are acceptable and don't inadvertedly spell out a word they would be uncomfortable with.

so there are my thoughts and opinions on names.......hugs!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Removed that comment due to a misspelled word ( did I just spell "misspelled" wrong? :)) I meant to post, isn't it funny how some names that used to be male names are now female names! Time changes everything.

  3. And just to clear up any confusion - there is nothing going on in either of Karen's children's lives that sparked this blog post! As far as I know! And I guess I got what I used to ask for - I'm not really Allison, I'm Shuggie, right?? ;) Oh and mom, I feel your pain with the spelling out last names. KRIEVANS?! Ohhhh NO! Here's to hoping that Marshall still wants to name his son Seibold, just for the sake of being different!