Is it too similar?

We are expecting our third child and second daughter. [name_f]My[/name_f] oldest daughter was named after my maternal grandmother and if I had another girl I knew I wanted to name her after my dad’s side of the family, who originally comes from [name_u]Kenya[/name_u]. We’ve been looking for Swahili names and have narrowed it down to two - [name_f]Imara[/name_f] and [name_f]Aleela[/name_f].

I think I’m leaning toward [name_f]Aleela[/name_f], but I’m aware that it sounds a lot like [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f], another beautiful name that has become too popular. I don’t want her to constantly have to correct people. It’s hard because I love the name, but I worry it will constantly be mistaken for [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f].

So what do you guys think? Is it useable or would it get mistaken too often?

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[name_f]Aleela[/name_f] mistaken for [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f]? Absolutely yes I could see that happening often. Technically, they shouldnt be, because the Aa in [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f] represents an Arabic ‘ayn’ and the stress should be on the first syllable but most folks replace the ayn with a shwah and emphasize the second syllable… /sigh. But I digress…

I think [name_f]Imara[/name_f] is stunning and would absolutely go with [name_f]Imara[/name_f] over [name_f]Aleela[/name_f]. The double ee in the transliteration of Aleela looks, visually, a little clunky to me anyhow. It also travels better, when you think about global pronunciations and alphabets.

Another option is to go with a slight shortening ir variation of [name_f]Aleela[/name_f] to set it apart from [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f].

Aleela and [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f] are different enough to me. I love [name_f]Aleela[/name_f]!

Imara is beautiful too though so you can’t go wrong


If you don’t want her to correct people I might not go for [name_f]Aleela[/name_f] - there’s the [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f] thing and the fact that there are many ways it could be spelled ([name_f]Alila[/name_f], Alilah, [name_f]Aleela[/name_f], Alyla, etc). [name_f]Imara[/name_f] is beautiful !

I don’t mind so much if people aren’t sure how to spell it. [name_f]My[/name_f] own name has several different spelling possibilities and it’s never bothered me. But I don’t want her to have people constantly calling her the wrong name, I’m sure that gets old. I’m still debating but it’s a shame that I might have to pass on a name I find so pretty because of this.

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I love [name_f]Imara[/name_f] - it’s beautiful and unique, but still very wearable and won’t have as many pronunciation or spelling issues as [name_f]Aleela[/name_f]. I can see the appeal of [name_f]Aleela[/name_f], but to me, it doesn’t hold a candle to the stunning quality of [name_f]Imara[/name_f].

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I love it too. Other than that similarity, I have no other reservations about choosing [name_f]Aleela[/name_f]. We shall see.

@lynng I could Not agree with this more. :slight_smile:

Usable but definitely easy to mistake for [name_f]Aaliyah[/name_f], particularly over the phone

I think it would be mistaken.
That being said [name_f]Imara[/name_f] is stunning!