questionsdo you judge people according to their children's…


Yes. Those kids will have to live with that name till they are old enough to go to court to change them.

It's a cruel joke to name a kid something stupid - like Moo.


I know I do it, and to some extent I actually think it is fair.

We are constantly forming opinions of people and things. To form those opinions we use whatever information we have available to us. There's no reason why someone's choice in child names should be off limits. Naming a child is a very personal thing, and I think it can say a lot about someone.

If a parent thinks it is a good idea to burden their child with a name like Tequila, then I'm going to use that bit of information to form an opinion of that parent.

Apart from outright goofy names, the ones that get me are the parents who apparently just pick whatever is the current most popular baby name. This year my kid had 28 kids in her class and they were evenly split between boys and girls. There were 3 girls named Madison. 3 out of 14! Come on people, lets try and put a little thought into it.


Since I work as a school counselor, I see how oddball names can have an adverse affect on young people. So yes, I often find myself contemplating "What were they thinking" when I read the names of incoming students. It is my belief that many of the parents that do this to their children are self centered and are more concerned about being original or different and do not think about what the child will have to endure because of the name.

Just as a side note, my granddaughter was named after graffiti her parents saw painted on a train. People constantly misspell it, pronounce it wrong, etc. It was named one of the worst new baby names of 2009 on a website that centers around baby names. Groan...


Sometimes I cannot help but to form an opinion about a parent whenever I hear they named their child something weird.

Although I do agree with @rustybender how it can be confusing when there are 3 or 4 children with the same name, I don't think naming your kid Moo or Tequila should be a solution to that problem


We gave my son an unusual name. Out of respect, I gave him an initial as his middle name so he could choose a name when he was older, if he wished. Flash forward to adulthood - he loves his name (it has become common), and has had lots of fun with the initial J. He has been Jason, Jedi, Jackalope, Jalapeno, and Jet.

There's a difference between unusual and burdensome names, and children's names do reflect on the parents.


I try not to, but sometimes...
I have friends who named their son Hezekiah Stephen. They call him Stephen but a lot of people call him Hezzie (he calls himself Hezzie most of the time). It took them a while to be okay with him being called Hezzie, but the little guy makes it work.

Growing up I had a friend named Mark Elsenheimer. His parents said that with a last name like that they were going to stick with simple, common first and middle names, so as not to unduly burden their kids, particularly the boys. That seemed like an excellent thought to me.

My parents named me Ruth and then realized that "Ruth" was too grown up a name for this little kids they had. So I've always been "Ruth Ann" (first and middle name). Growing up in the north, people who went by "two first names" were rare, so it tended to confuse people. It's been a bit easier since I moved to the south for college and then Texas afterwards, but some people find it confusing.


I once met a woman, caucasian, with a "normal" surname, but with the first name of "Twilindr". She went by "Linda". Her parents were hippies.


Yes. Yes I do. I considered that when choosing our daughter's name, too, since I work as a teacher and I know it happens. I wanted to (hopefully) prevent a class full of duplicate names, mispronunciations misspellings, and horrible nicknames!


@rustybender: Yeah, it'll be fun in 60 or 70 years when today's common names like "Madison" and "Britney" and "Caitlyn" all become "old lady names" while all the hot young girls are named "Ethel" and "Myrtle" and "Henrietta."


I wouldn't say that I judge parents for what they name their kids, but I might question their judgment if they give their kids weird names. Also consider the following article from 2010:


I know a man named Mike Hunt. I swear it is not a joke, if you do not get why that is bad, say it out loud (but not around people). When I worked nights the supervisor would page 'Mike Hunt, have you seen Mike Hunt?' as a joke as Mike did not work that shift. She thought it was funny.

Freakonomics says names are important growing up.

I think they are important to a point. I gave my children names that they could pick the shorter version if they would like.


not only do I judge them, I tell them that their kid has a f'd-up name.
They deserve our scorn and any shame that can be piled upon them.


We're about to have a child in October and we revisited this discussion. Some parents are so self centered in naming their child and it frustrates me. We were careful with our son not to choose a name that was too common, to avoid the problem I have where 3 people in my 15 person department have the same name. We also made sure not to choose ambiguous girl/boy names where our son could be made fun of. We also didn't do any off the wall spellings because it sucks to have to correct the spelling on your name every single time.


Yep. If you name your child something along the lines of "Cosmic Blossom" prepare to be judged. You've saddled your child with a name that will make certain life situations needlessly difficult for them, and potentially negatively impact how they're seen as adults. As a mom (soon to be x2), it seems incredibly selfish to do that just so you can feel special and unique about your name choice.

When making our short list of baby names we used the Doctor, Honorable, Esq, President test. If they passed, we were good to keep them on the list. I might think twice about being cared for by Doctor Cosmic Blossom, even if I'd only heard good things from other patients.


My parents were hippies, so I was named after a tree. My name is uncommon, but not weird and I frequently get compliments on it.

My top two name pet peeves are:
1. Names that sound like the parents we going for something expensive or classy, but when applied to a person sounds more like a stripper name. Examples: Chardonnay, Lexus, Diamond, etc. The exception for me is Mercedes - maybe because I heard it a lot before these other names started popping up out of the woodwork.

2. Names where the parents change the spelling in an effort to be "creative". It is just burdening the kid with having to spell their name on a daily basis. It would not be uncommon in my area for a class to have three Madisons, but they would be spelled Madison, Madyson, and Maddisen. I once saw a local birth announcement in which the parents had chosen a "regular" name, but then spelled it with twice as many letters as necessary! It was something like Arrihyahnna. Why!?


follow up question, if your mom is a Scientologist, does that automatically make you a Scientologist?


@wootfast: As in you're the child of Mr. and Mrs. Scientologist? Usually, yep you would also be a member of the Scientologist clan. Perhaps per @alpayton you could be Acura Scientologist? If you're talking about the (is it still considered a) religion, then iono.


I think that if you want a unique name, the best thing to do is just pick an actual name from another language. My daughter's name means "eternal blossoming" in Swahili. She really liked it when I told her that her name meant something pretty. At the time of my picking her name, it wasn't very common, but I later found out that it must have been pretty popular that year. In sixth grade she was one of four girls in her class with some variation of her name. Whoops?

I came really close to naming her Monet, after the painter. Sure, it's a surname, but I've seen it used a few times as a girl's first name. I think that it's a pretty nice balance of "different" without crossing the line into "crazy."


@wootfast ,while admittedly not knowing specific the ins&outs of scientology, to the best of my knowledge, Judiasim is the only religion that is passed down via the mother ...
(that is to say, regardless your father's religion, or your own beliefs for that matter, if your Mother is a Jew, so are you.)


I much less of a problem with names that seem to have come from nature (Rose, Dawn, Amber, etc).

My biggest pet peeve with names are the ones that look like scrabble tiles were thrown in a bag and pulled out at random.

My bro-in-law's sister just had a daughter... they changed the middle name once they realized her initials would be COC.


Only if it's some made up name that reflects the parents Trayvon!! me bad!!


Judge NOT lest thee be judged! - FYI I'm a not christian nor religious by any means but this idiom/truism says it all!


Even worse than a made up name is a bastardized name. I can't believe how many different spellings there are for some of the more common names. (Jordan, Jordyn, Jordinn, Jorqdin (silent q), etc) McKenzie and Caitlin are even worse.

An then you have people who want all their children's name to rhyme or be based on some pattern. What ever happened to originality. Some kid will be stuck with a name like Bradison just so it matches his sister Madison.

I think to be fair, children should be able to legally change their parent's names once they put them into a retirement community. Fair play right?


@tellingson: Ooooh, I like that idea! (Probably all the more so because I don't have kids...)


@tellingson: I'm afraid that I have one of those bastardized names. I don't mind it so much, except that even when I send an email that CLEARLY has my name spelled in the signature line, people often "correct" it to the regular spelling when replying.

I named my daughter Emily before it starting topping the list of most popular girls' names. She was named after my husband's maternal grandmother. I had never known an Emily and I thought the name was lovely. Unfortunately, the name hit the charts just a couple of years after she was born and now there seems to be an Emily on every corner.

I have to admit that I do judge people by what they name their children. I am hesitant to admit it, but I do. That applies, not only to the quirky, odd, or invented names, but also to the pompous, pretentious names, as well. I try to draw the line at judging people by what name they were given. Hopefully those of us who received odd or bastardized names become our own people eventually.


Heck yeah. I feel bad for kids that have terribly unimaginative parents and name them something awful like Mohn (they swapped the J for an M) or, at one school, they spelled Jonhathan that way and it is now his name.

Maybe there's always been a tendency to really insane and awful names and I'm just noticing now because I am a parent? Or maybe it's the internet. I don't know but man there are some just facepalm-er names out there!


@belyndag: There are some days I'm not too bright and then there are other days I'm downright stupid. It wasn't until recently that I learned your name is Belynda G. (I saw it at the main Woot! site--BelyndaG) Here, I see your name as belyndag and I was pronouncing it in my mind, as bell-lyn-dag. Maybe a danish name?

Duh, go ahead and laugh.


Anyone who gives his kids names like Dweezil and Moon Unit is ok in my book. I may have a slight bias there though.


Yes, I judge them for their poor judgment. I know of an attorney named Richard Head. When shortened traditionally, that would be......wait a minute, that's appropriate. Bad example.


I try not to, but I do. One family friend has a daughter named Paprika, another family with a Tiger Lilly, and plenty of others.

I chose 3 names that were not common atthe time, but were real names (though one was originally a last name). I even dismissed names for being too popular, and vetoed any in the top 25. Now 2/3 of my kids have names in the top 10. Grrrrr! There are 3 kids in my youngest's grade with her name, out of 4 classes. My middle daughter has been 1 of 2 kids with her name in her class 2 out of the past 3 years.

I chose the most common spelling for each name, but they still have misspelled names all the time. Ditto for my name, though, amd I was one of 4 in my class. That's what I was trying to avoid, and I failed. :(

I try not to judge partly because there were horrible "old lady names" too. My xh's family has some unique ones we didn't use for the kids.


I have a really hard time with parents that name all their kids with the same first initial. Jacob, Jane, Justine, Jill. Too cutesy! I think George Carlin had a bit about that.


I named my son Draco, it is actually not that rare. We liked the way it sounded and suits him very well. I don't mind if you judge me.


@barnabee: Ha! Not to worry. You should see what kind of response I get to my name. "It's Belynda with a 'Y'," I tell people. So they spell it Bylinda. Now THAT is dumb, if you ask me. "Like Linda with a 'Y', but with 'Be' in front of it," I explain. They look at me blankly.

Although Belinda is not a terribly unusual name down here in the deep south, it gave me fits when I lived in the northern states. Lots of giggles from the Yankees. Of course, that was before Belinda Carlisle embarked on a solo career. Quite a few Belindas in France, Australia and New Zealand. Maybe I should just move.

Oh, and I've found a rare few other "Belyndas." We're around, just special.


@belyndag: I find it irritating when someone with an oddly spelled name gets offended when someone else gets the spelling wrong. My sisters name is Linsey... why my mom spelled it that way I do not know, but she understands that most people will default to Lindsay and that's okay.

My daughters name however is Lily... When people ask how it's spelled I say, it's spelled like the flower... the problem is that they still use two l's. I get frustrated only people it's a common spelling though. Had I named her Lilley or Lilee I think I would have to have a little more patience.


My cousin has two boys. Colin and Colton... Yeah Colton is a weird name but whatever, now they just and a girl and the father, who didn't get to name one of the boys after his dad "John" , wanted to put that stamp on a child, girl or not. So yeah, her name is Johnna I feel bad for her every time I hear it. To make things worse her middle name is Carolina, I guess she's kind of stuck.

Moral of the story? If waste your opportunity to name one of your first boys John you should be disallowed from forcing your third to have a terrible name


@jeremytheindian: LOL! Well, I hope I didn't irritate you with my irritation. To be clear, I don't [u]expect[/u] people to know how to spell my name on their own. I [u]know[/u] it's an unusual spelling. What does irritate me is when I send an email or note that clearly has my name spelled in the signature line and the address, and the recipient spells it differently when they respond. I can only assume that the recipient thought that I had mispelled my own name, or that he or she hadn't bothered to read what I sent. (Especially irritating if the person is asking for my help.... which they usually are.)

And please tell your sister, Linsey, that I sympathize. I, too, ignore mispellings of my name unless it is necessary that it be spelled correctly (email sent to belindag will [u]not[/u] be delivered to belyndag). And, as with Linsey, I did not choose this spelling. In fact, my mother didn't, either. It was her sister who worked in the hospital office who wanted to spruce it up a bit.