Baby Names... do you imagine their upbringing?

I was talking to someone today about names and I wondered what other people thought when they heard some names. My midwife when i was pg told me she'd had a mother who named her 3 children after trainers (puma and nike, but cant remember the third). we heard a mum shout a toddler named after a car while waiting for a scan.

personally, i dislike babies being given an abbreviaion as a formal name, but that's just my opinion. and i really dislike it when people dont spell their child's name right, just to be different.

but do other people think some names are more likely to lead people to assumptions about that child's parents? maybe it's just because i work in education so come across this frequently.

what do you think?

[Modified by: Calleigh on 12 August 2010 18:52:35 ]


  • I'm the opposite - I like abbreviations as formal names! I don't really see the point of calling your baby Jennifer, for example, if you don't like the name Jennifer and will always call her Jenny! (I actually really like both those names, but that's beside the point.)

    Yes, agree with rest of your post though unfortunately. Some names do lead to assumptions about upbringing and 'class'. It works the other way though - when you hear of a baby named Rupert or Montgomery you make assumptions about his parents too!

  • I totally agree with making assumptions about the name of a child, not only about their parents but about their whole upbringing and probable future. Judgemental perhaps but I can't help it. Still it does work both ways though like coco says xx
  • my lecturer at uni once said he didnt go to uni (red brick) with any boys with what id call normal names, like ryan for example, but there were ruperts etc.
  • I don't mind abbreviations either, my dd1 is Jess, she is Jessica on her birth certificate (and when she is naughty) but for everything else she is Jess. Although I hate it when people call her Jessie.

    I probably also make the same judgements about kids and their parents from their names. A friend of mine is a primary school teacher and about 5 years ago she had a class full of Brittanys and Chardonnays and even a Champagne! and no Ruperts, bet you can work out what kind of area she worked in.
  • I'd have to say I would imagine a certain "type" of person shall we say calling their child something like "Nike"! There are other names though which are weirdly used by both upper class and lower class (i hate that distinction but can't think of a better way to say it right now) like "Chelsea" with a name like that you couldn't really decide!
    But as for speliings, there are so many variants on names that who is to judge which spellings are right or wrong?
    For example, my little girl is called Corynn which most might think is Corrine spelt funny, when in fact it shares the same root but is a different name and is pronounced "Cor-in" rather than "Co-reen". So I wouldn't think anything of spellings unless it is something really really ridiculous!
  • i referred to my baby when she was a bump as chardonnay and my mum thought it sounded posh as shed only heard it on footballers wives before!
  • I personally find it vulgar and ignorant to categorise people in terms of class and education simply by their name, but that's just me.

    I wonder how somebody might feel reading this thread if their child is called, lets say Chelsea, or horror of all horrors something like Ryan. I think we all know the undertones of this subject choice and I have to say to the OP your posts are becoming more and more provocative and I'm wondering if you're feeling ok in yourself.
  • i didnt say there was anything wrong with the name ryan! but of course knowing that would require reading a post properly. i said to me it was a normal traditional name, like paul or matthew.
  • Sarah, your post made me smile. I'm Jessica and I answer to Jessica (which most of my family call me) or Jess (most of my friends and my husband) but never, ever Jessie!

    I have to admit, I find the use of what I would consider nicknames as given names a bit odd. Not that I think it a negative, I just assume Harry is short for Henry and Jack for John so I have to make sure I ask now. But then I come from a family where a man christened Matthew went by the nickname 'John' his entire life, so who am I to talk?!

    Yes, I will admit to taking a guess at someone's background based on their name. But what I really find fascinating is the popularity of certain names across the board. I know more Maxes and Eves now than I ever imagined. Both are lovely names, but not ones that I would have guessed as being among the most popular if you had asked me before I got pregnant.
  • i make some assumptions i must admit but thats based on the areas i work in and the names i come across...

    i have seen many Pocahontas's, Shiraz's, Shanaz's and Shanias and twins called Dolce & Gabana & kids names after areas (in or near Glasgow e.g Paisley - a girl) as well so its hard not to girl i visit called her little boy Paul and what a shock that was but sadly he is likely to be the odd one out at school...i also dont agree with weird spellings - the worst i can think of was a newborn called James after doing his name bands i was informed by his (rather out raged) mum that that isnt the correct way to spell the name and it should in fact be spelled as JAMYZ!!!!

    Its a tough one though as take the name Hope - to me this isnt in the same league as the names i mentioned above but as its used quite alot by people in the areas i work 'trying to be posh' to me it now sounds more lower than upper class (not meaning to offend anyone) same way years ago i liked the name Logan and in the area i work in particular its the name of choice alongside Kaiden which put me right off so i think where you live and what you do as a job can affect your opinion...

    I personally dont mind abbreviated names e.g if you like Abbie more than Abigail why not just call her Abbie...thats just my opinion i know alot of other people like them to have the option when they are older to have the use of both which i get,,,my friends little boy is called Oliver and she debated with just calling him Ollie as she was certain thats how he would be known but she didnt in the end and now he is 4 months old and is never referred to as anything other than Oliver lol...we liked the name Finn for a boy but not Finlay as in my opinion they are different . If my DD had been a boy she would have been Matthew and while i know growing up there would be Matt/Matty abbreviations we would have always had a Matthew at home...

    we liked Isla and Orla as girls names and when my daughter was born (everyone was convinced she would be a boy) she didnt suit those names and we couldnt think of the end i chose Megan. Its a name i didnt consider before and one which doesnt seen as popular now as it was about 5 years ago (i didnt want her in a class with lots of people with the same name like i had growing up but didnt want her having a weird name either) i chose it because it suits her...i think its pretty for a little girl and while i find it a little harder to think on her as a grown women with that name as i worry it is still a little too 'gimicky' i know there is nothing wrong with the name and she could be succesful as a lawyer or whatever with that name (in my opinion) im waffling now though....


    [Modified by: Lauz41 on August 12, 2010 08:27 PM]

  • Totally. And the spelling one bugs me but I just think not my problem!

    My son does however have a "sunday" name as dh calls it but I always call him a shorter version, however dh and his family always use the full version which bugs me!

    When choosing my baby names, I put sir or lady before them and if they sound good then that's ok, may sound snobby but its not meant like that, I just like classic sounding names that are cute for kids and grown up for grown ups. I think sometimes people don't think through the lifespan of a name and what's cute at 2 may not be so cute at 25.

  • little man is a Ryan and I have no problem with Calleigh's post!

    I actually agree...but I do think it has something to do with being a teacher! I know we shouldnt 'judge' but it isnt easy when these names DO end up living up to the judgements 90% of the time!

    With regards to abbreviations - im with coco. I would never call my lo Alfred so why call him that on his birth certificate or Christening Day. He is an Alfie. Having said that, I think names work both ways, in that we are all very quick to shorten names but if Alfie found Alfie a problem when he is old and grey then what is the difference in naming himself Alfred? We all do it the other way around??

    I also deliberately chose what I felt were 'normal' names, spelt in the 'normal' way, and that couldnt be shortened (my mum was the same with me and my sister) yet people still ask how they are spelt! Not sure how else you could spell Ryan??
  • Somewhat harsh comments there about op, not sure that was entirely necessary.
  • yeah i agree
  • lol, i think some people are reading too much into this!! i personally like shorted names.. think Elizabeth... your child then has the choice of Ellie, Lizzie, Betty, Beth, Eliza.... oh the probabilties! when they are old enough they can decide what they are called!!

    my dd is called Phoebe.. so the only thing she can get shortened to is Pheebs, and i wasnt going to be putting THAT on her birth certificate!! lol!

    i guess its each to their own.. but yes, i agree that babies called mercedes or chardonnay are going to be discrimated against regardless of her upbringing!
  • well i have an unusual name, in fact those of you who know me on face book I bet not all of you pronounce my name correctly - ill give yo a clue talk show host should sort it out (dont post it on here lol) i love that I am the only one I have yet to meet any one with my name or my spelling (female) and love the fact that my dad picked it out as it was unusual just for me - I am always complimented on it too, it would not be everyones 'cup of tea' but I like it and think it really suits me xx

    I totally take calleighs point though from a teaching point of view, what i think is that nowadays there seems to be the quest for the most unusual name or the maddest spelling and it has just got a bit nuts but each to their own lol i think naming your kids after trainers is a bit bloody ridiculous what fun those kids will have at school.

    re long to short names if I had have had a girl i was going to call her izzy but isabella on her birth cert, that way if she didn't like izzy she had a choice or if she had a career etc where she wanted something a bit grander say she could use isabella eg: instead of Dr Charli you could be Dr Charlotte, like a professional name and a play name lol
  • I also really am not a fan of abbreviations as names on birth certificate. My brother's called Matthew & we call him Matt or Matty sometimes but imo Matt wouldn't be a name to put on birth certificate. My name is Philippa and I go by Phil, but at work I sign my emails etc as Philippa.

    My Lo is called Gabriel and we always call him Gabe but like both names.

    We live on a council estate though most of the houses are owned now it isn't a wealthy area and we are on a low income (I work in admin OH did too but been made redundant), but we are educated.

    I would definitely make assumptions on someone who named their child something that was (Imo) spelt wrong, or chavvy like Princess Tiiamii. Heard of someone who named their ds 'Rylee' instead of 'Riley'. I'm not keen on that.

  • completely agree re shortened names - can't help thinking that some shortened names that are cute for a babytoddler do not work for a 35 year old doctor/lawyer etc etc

    I don't think you can help making certain judgements about a family's class according to the names of their children, and interestingly I haven't come across a scenario yet where that snap judgement has been wrong.......

    All just my opinion obviously!

  • i think no matter how open minded a person is they will still automatically have assumptions regarding a persons background, it is very easy to presume class based on things like names and clothes etc, when in reality it may be totally wrong,

  • My lo is Gabriel too and goes by Gabriel and Gabe. I think it's quite an old fashioned name although it seems to be coming back into fashion again! I've been told be serval people that it's either too posh or chavvy!!
    I like full names and then it's a choice what you go by but that may be a result of having a name that couldn't be shortened!
Sign In or Register to comment.

Featured Discussions