You Reaction to Baby Names.. JFF

Updated on October 03, 2011
M.M. asks from Lake Charles, LA
25 answers

So I'm stuck on bed rest for the next 2 months so I'm having loads of time to obsess about baby stuff.. We are having a boy and have a name picked out but after my experience with sharing the name of our first before she was here I decided to not make the same mistake again.. I picked her name because it was unique and I didn't even think sharing it would mean people would steal it, but they did. So, this time around we decided on a name that is REALLY different, it has multiple meanings and the one that most people are familiar with isn't exactly warm and fuzzy, granted it's not horrible just a bit brash I suppose. The hawaiian meaning is so fitting and has no negative connotation and since my husband is Hawaiian that's the name we both want and I refuse to budge. He told a few people and felt a little self conscious about the reaction he got, once he said "it's Hawaiian it means ___" They were like oh man thats cool! I'm completely in love with the name (even wanted to name my first this if she would have been a boy). It's a very strong, masculine name and I think it's perfect, plus if he doesn't like it he can go by his middle name. It's not a name that kids would pick on him for it's more of an adult reaction that I foresee..

So I suppose my questions are: 1.) Any mom's out there with kiddos that have unique names, how do you handle any negative reactions you get? Like the subtle change in facial features or the "ohhh.. that's nice..." I know I've never heard a name where I was like "What were they thinking?!" and I've heard some crazy names, but that uniqueness is what I think is cool.. I just want to get a handle on MY response before he's old enough to see people may have issues with his name and 2.) If you met someone's kid with a name you thought was a little unconventional would you be open to the meaning behind it or would you just assume the parents were insane?

And FYI: It's not hitler or stalin or any crazy name.. matter of fact I don't know a single person (alive, dead, old or young) that has this name.. not to say there isn't some historical figure that does just nothing that sticks out.

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

LOL the name isn't even close to "sexyanna" lol. It's a word that i'd suppose some adults might not even know the correct definition to so unless the kids are influenced by parents they would be totally in the dark until about 9th or 10th grade :) (8th at the earliest).

And the reason I LOVE the name is because it is going to sound amazing when he's playing football, graduating, becoming a professional. Its strong and you can't misspell it, it's 4 letters and 99.9% of people will think it's english in origin.. I can deal with ANY kid reaction but adults is what I was more asking about, and if I thought it was strange enough that no one else would use it I'd just post it on here :) I think kids' personalities grow to fit their names and I'm giving him an edge on the competition lol

Featured Answers



answers from Savannah on

You just have to roll with the punches. Even naming a child a traditional name can get you into trouble with some people.


answers from Houston on

My first daughters name is Gwendolynn, Lots of people raise their brows at this and have actually never heard it. Doesnt bother me in the least.


answers from Iowa City on

I am editing my answer so that I don't let the cat out of the bag.

I am guessing the name is ****. Am I right? If that is the name I don't think it is a big deal. A lot of names have a negative meaning in one language or another and people use them all the time. My daughter's name means "strife" in one language. Not a big deal. Whatever the name is, use it if you like it and don't worry about how others will feel about it.

More Answers


answers from Seattle on

MAN....I REALLY want to know the name you picked!

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

Is it Kale???? Because I freaking love that name!! Just tell them its a surprise. I will never understand why people give negative opinions on babies names.
Heres how I do it, if a couple tells me a name that I dont like, I say "That is soo cute!" If I do like the name I say I LOVE it!! lol
There is no way I would tell someone I dont like their baby name. Even my own sister!
I hope its Kale though really! lol

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Antonio on

My bff gave an ugly look when I told her I wanted to name my son Titus. She paused, said "I do NOT like that name." I was pissed at first b/c with her 5 children I have never NEVER said "I don't like a name." I would say "Oh well that name's okay. I like X name better." I was teaching at the time and made a list of the names I liked on the board. One 5th grader said "Tit- us?" (like tit/boob + us) That was one of the main reasons we didn't pick that name for our son - the embarassing mis-pronunciation.

Some people just like traditional names and aren't fans of any strange out-there names. I wish you'd tell us the name of your child. I am SO curious!

If I were you and got such weird responses, I may say (once it's finalized); "Well we like it. You don't have to. That's fine. But that's his name. That's what we're going to call him, no nicknames or anything." I would think some people that are close to you that don't like it will want to call him a nickname. ie if they didn't like Ricardo they may call him Ricky or something.

I think I would TOTALLY ask "Well that's a unique name. Where did you find that name?" I would want to know. I would not assume they're insane.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Lansing on I'm sorry I wouldn't be able to get past the name even if it had a WONDERFUL meaning. If the name is shocking to me, I'm going to be shocked. Although, I would never make a big deal to the parent about it, because that is not how I am. (And I'm trying not be harsh, just honest)

Because, all that comes to mind is a girl that went to preschool with my daughter named Secceanna pronounced Sexyanna...I can not get past it since it has Sexy in matter if they told me it meant daughter of God. It still doesn't sound right to my ears. Oh and I had my 4 year old asking me what Sexy meant because some of the kids were talking about the word "sexy" in her class. So ya, don't be naive to what other kids know and/or say.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Cincinnati on

Well now I am really curious! After you have your baby post on here and let us know the name!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I think that it's great to name your kid a unique name but if your child has to go her entire life with her name being mispronounced and misspelled then she will be tortured, teased, and might end up resenting her unique name. At least make it easy to pronounce and no weird spellings. I can't tell you how much it annoys me when folks like to spell their kids names with a twist like Madysen(Madison) Jayden(Jaden) Michele (Michelle). Consider using the unique name as a middle name. Just saying.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I'm going to be honest, when I hear an unconventional name, I don't ever ask what the meaning is behind it. If someone wants to tell me, great, I actually am curious. But it kind of seems rude to ask, "Is there a story behind that?" because it implies that you think that there better be one to justify the weirdness of the name.

If people ask your son's name, I think you can always say, "His name is [Whatever.] It's Hawaiian for [whatever it's Hawaiian for]" as a standard answer, so you can skip the weird reaction and go straight to the "cool!" reaction.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Our son's name is Cael (Celtic meaning warrior) but is pronounced Kale (which is a form of lettuce)...I get "why in the world would you name your son after lettuce?"...

I simply say I didn't, and it's meaning is warrior...he is three and hates when people call him anything other than Cael. Don't worry about others, their judgement means nothing to you.

But I really want to know what name you've picked. I love names that mean something to people. Not just the love the name cause it's what you've always wanted. Neither of my children are named with the names that I liked before.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

B-E-G has a good point about being careful about possible misuse of the name. And kids are extremely creative that way! You might want to run the name past some children you know and see what they can do to mess it up.

Otherwise, I'd say not to worry too much about being conventional or non-conventional. I lean toward traditional names myself, but the suggestion below would still apply:

Put your chosen name in lots of contexts for the next several weeks. I'll use a conventional name as an example: "George Allen Smith, do I have to come up there?" "George Allen Smith, second place in the spelling bee..." "I don't know why George Allen ended up at the principal's office AGAIN..." "My younger child, George Allen, has just been accepted at Yale." "Admiral George Allen Smith of the U.S. Navy...." Go outside the box, have fun with it, and if you still like it, use it.

(Actually, you should probably look at other people's use of your other picked-out name as a compliment. It shows your creativity and good taste.)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

There are 6, count them, SIX people in the country with my son's name (huzzah for the census report), and they are all older black men (80's and up). It's a Gaelicized Roman name... which just *suits* since my husband is Italian and I'm largely Scottish... and it fits my son down to the ground. The pattern repeats, as well, since his middle names are scottish and italian as well. (We have a family tradition of 2 'honorific' names, one for each side of the family) as middle names.

It's not a unique name, it's just an OLD name. Our experience is that people ask, and are intrigued, or they just *know* and get a big smile.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

You can name your child anything you want as long as your ready and willing to deal with what may be public censure. Sort of along the lines of the kid with the spiked green mohawk and multiple piercings. If your not ready for the public to look at you or make comments doing go out looking like that lol.


answers from Richmond on

My brother said if he ever has a son, he's naming him Rueben... I keep thinking 'sandwich'... it's not going to be pretty, poor unconceived child ;)

We call our son Roman... his name is Romanov (think 'Russian Czar'). Our pediatrician's office is... very diverse... and we get all some KINDS of wrong pronunciations! Just say Roman! It's even in his chart!

I usually ask about names, I like names and meanings, particularly what it means to someone. I still think Rueben is just stupid ;)

Oh, and one of the name's in the running for my son was Trygve (Trig-vee); it's my deceased godfather's middle name. I just didn't want my poor kid having to explain that one forever!! Cool name though, if you know how to pronounce it!



answers from Dallas on

My older daughter's name is Charis. Pronounced with a "K" sound. Dang - NO ONE could pronounce it. I've always loved it and thought it was unique and pretty. She got so tired of telling people how to say it. In high school, she started using her middle name, Alicia to get some relief. Then decided that she liked her first name better and now goes by that. She said that she now often gets compliments on it. I will admit that I mentally kicked myself several times over the years.


answers from Dallas on

It's hard to say not knowing the name. But in general, people go so far out of thier way to come up with unique names that I think they are causing problems for the kids. Celebrity names like Pilot Inspektor and Apple come to mind! Having said that, if you are committed to this name, you are committing yourself and your child to the reaction, for life. You have to be comfortable enough with it not to give one little care or even notice that look. Teach your child to celebrate it, wear it loud and proud and never apologize for it.


answers from La Crosse on

I think its great to go with a name for your/ husbands heritage. If you love the name that's all that matters. Just make sure its not a name that is going to be majorly mispronounced all the time. My son has a biblical name but we replaced the "i" with a "y". But honestly I think even with the "correct" spelling people would mispronounce it as its not a common name.

But what Im getting at by mispronouncing it while looking at it is.. one time while dealing with some kids there was a new student ( first and last time this little guy ever came.. oops!) we were looking at it and trying our best to say it correctly it was spelled " lemonjello ". ( Im not kidding, that's how it was spelled!!) how else do you pronounce it but lemon jello? um nope that's not correct!! His mom stood up and said its pronounced la-mon- ja- low. I felt really bad and kinda dumb, but you could also tell I wasn't the first one to pronounce it like that...

Embrace you little one and his name :)



answers from Redding on

Name your baby what you want.
Just be prepared for reactions and don't let it bother you if you have set your heart on the name.
Mention ANY name, and people will either like it or hate it.
Kids can find ways to make fun of ANY name.

A woman I work with was so embarrassed just last week that she'd been pronouncing my last name wrong for 6 months. I'm used to people getting weird about my first name, so I thought nothing of it.

Having done birth certificates at our local hospital, nothing surprises me anymore.
I think when it comes to names, you have to consider how YOU would feel answering to that name for your entire life. Not just as a child, but as an adult. How will it sound when you answer a phone and announce yourself? How will it look on business cards if your child becomes a professional?
I don't know why, but I always considered how it would sound when my kids' names were announced at their high school graduations.

If you are committed to the name, then be resolved to owning your choice.
If it's really that different and out there, you're going to have to have a thick skin and you're going to have to encourage your child to do the same.

Best wishes.


answers from Medford on

You name your children what you want to name them and if someone doesnt like it, thats tough. Sure there are some crazy outlandish names out there, but they sometimes are the ones who use it to their advantage and develop a personality to go along with it. My grand daughter has a very unique name. We have never heard of anyone named the same. Its a word my daughter saw on a casino sign with some letters burned out and thought it was a neat looking and sounding word. As nuts as that sounds, now, 4 years later we have come to the point where it sounds normal and common to us. Others are used to it now and even her little preschool friends call her by her name with no thought of it being different or strange. She will grow up knowing it is not an everyday name but Im pretty sure she will love it. As for peoples reaction when we tell them her name, they usually lean closer and try to repeat it but get it wrong. I then say it correctly and smile and say, "yes it is unusual isnt it?" and thats all.



answers from Houston on

Funny. My baby's name is somewhat unique. I thought it was until someone told me that there is a television character with that name. Oh, well.... I actually made up the name, incorporating a single-syllable family name. (I wasn't actually looking to make up a name. I just needed to use the family name and wanted it to sound "better" with our last name.) The meaning is perfect--all the stars aligned for this one. My mother was the only other person who knew before he got here. It was simply nobody else's business, and I didn't want to feel compelled to explain my choice and/or cuss somebody out for a stupid response. Yeah, they would have gotten blasted, 'cause that's how I do it. Most people tend to respond to it really well, like they are truly impressed. People do question it, just wondering how I came up with that. I don't mind telling them. My two BILs are the only ones who turned up their noses and said, "What kind of name is that?" One even said that we should teach him to box or give him a nickname. Idiot. He is not someone I expect to see often, anyway, so it works for me. I let my husband respond to him because I have nothing to say. (I get annoyed just thinking about it.)

I would be open to the meaning behind some kid's name. That doesn't mean that I would like it, but I could appreciate the effort. I am not into the novelty made-up names.


answers from Santa Fe on

My kids have unique names that we just love...and their names suit them perfectly. I could care less what other people think. I think you should just not worry about other people's opinions. In the schools where we live there are plenty of kids with unique names and I've noticed the kids don't even flinch when they meet another kid that has a different name. It's just a name to them. We are friends with one couple in town who are very opinionated and the wife will flat out state that she thinks unique names are dumb and that they prefer regular names. Personally, I think regular names are boring and overused. Downright blah! But I would never tell my friend this...nor would I really state it ever (I can do it here bc we are anonymous). That would be rude. So.....I do like my friend but I also think she can be pretty rude and insensitive. Anyway, I am sure the name you are thinking of is great. You can not control what other people think. Some people can be unkind. That is their problem...not yours. Ignore them!



answers from Chicago on

Now I really want to know the name!! :) Im having a girl, so I promise not to steal it! :)

If you love the name, that is all that should matter. You shouldnt feel the need to explain what it means, but if that is part of the reason you are proud of the name, then you can share it when and if you feel like it.

I was really surprised by a lot of negative responses I got to a name I was thinking of for my unborn daughter when I posted it on here, which taught me two things.
1. I still love the name! I still picture MY daughter with the name, even tho almost fifty people I dont know on here told me they hate it! lol. So it will more than likely be her name! I have to go with what I love, not worrying about what others think.
2. I will probably hold off on telling my family the name until she is born or close too it because I dont want to worry about hearing their opinions (even tho I dont think their opinions could sway me!)

Uniqueness is cool! And if you got something unique that you love, go for it!! I would never think the parents were insane for picking something different!


answers from Seattle on

I have a Gieger (guy-ger) and a Zephyr(zef-er)

Gieger is named after HR. Giger...A German artist who did all the art work for the Alien movies...and is Jonathan Davis(the front leader for the band Korn..also my husbands favorite band)inspiration for alot of his own personal artwork and collection of art sculptures.

Zephyr is a type of wind that blows through the desert in California...or so I have been told.

He actually got his name from the Lords of Dogs Towns Skate board shop...Named Zephyr.

So both name origins are not full of history or even have an amazing story behind them....We went with what we thought was amazing...And WE would not have them any other way. They both FIT there unique names!

My oldest is Brody. Pretty simple...But fits him wonderfully.



answers from Honolulu on

Just name him what you want.
Hawaiian names, are very meaningful.
By the time your son is older... HE will himself, CORRECT 'adults' about his name. He will be old enough by then...

Both my kids have unique names. Often mispronounced... BUT my kids (who are only 5 & 8)... since they were younger... WILL CORRECT any child or adult... that mispronounces their name and/or will tell them what it means.
Our last name, is also, unusual. Not phonetic at all. BOTH my kids, since Toddlers, will tell ANYONE, how to pronounce their name.

Hawaiian names...are chosen in a very personal way. Sometimes a "Kahu" is even consulted with, to choose a name.
It is very, meaningful.

Choose the name that you and your Husband want.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions