Legitimate spellings and similar names

My daughter’s name is [name]Grace[/name]. I’ve posted on here before about how her name seems to get misspelled or mispronounced frequently despite the common, classic moniker. She started her second year of preschool yesterday and at her orientation, her name was spelled, “Graceyn”. We live in an area where many of the children have less popular names, like [name]Cosmo[/name] and [name]Beatrice[/name], so I’m not sure if people just assume that all the children would have uncommon names. Last year, her name was misspelled as “[name]Grayce[/name]” and when we had to take her to the ER a couple of years ago, they had her listed as “Greece”.

I really did not think that this would ever be an issue and it makes me wonder if the advice that we sometimes give to other parents that it will be easier for their child’s name to have a traditional spelling (when that hasn’t been the case in our family), may be a bit misguided. A friend of mine has been through similar problems with her daughter, [name]Hannah[/name]; and I have had problems with my name, [name]Leah[/name] (though, I thought that was because the name wasn’t as common then). I believe that because so many people have used non-traditional spellings for their children, it makes it more common to have a less-common spelling.

I was just wondering if there were any other parents who have had a similar problem with people butchering the name of their children, when they have traditional spellings.

I don’t know. I’m afraid of that, too. My name is [name]Ashley[/name], and it’s been misspelled [name]Ashely[/name], [name]Ashlie[/name], [name]Ashleigh[/name], [name]Ashlee[/name], [name]Ashlea[/name], etc… Which bugs me to no end. For a while, [name]Ashley[/name] was the top name in the country. [name]How[/name] could people possibly assume it was more likely I was [name]Ashely[/name] or [name]Ashlie[/name] or [name]Ashlea[/name] (all of which are much less common than [name]Ashleigh[/name] and [name]Ashlee[/name], even) than the more traditional [name]Ashley[/name]?!

I still plan on going with the more classic names–mainly because I think it looks better–but my logic is that the classic spelling is usually the most popular, so hopefully people will still assume the most popular spelling is the correct one. With the exception of [name]Aidan[/name] and [name]Madeleine[/name], of course.

I have had people misspell my name with a “K” instead of a “C”. Or they would remove the ‘u’ from my name.

I even had a previous classmate argue me down on how to spell my name. Lol. She told me I was spelling it wrong and that it should start with a ‘K’. The traditional way is with a ‘C’, so I guess she thought since she had a family member that spelled it with a ‘K’, it was the correct way.

I think part of the issue is that people tend to suck at spelling and handwriting, but they don’t really realize how much. Neither is really emphasized in schools anymore. Spelling is actually harder than people tend to assume - or people assume that they know more about it than they do. So i don’t think it’s necessarily that people expect unusual spellings so much as that they don’t know how to spell as well as they think they do.

But in that case, i do think using a fairly standard spelling is still smart, because it does at least REDUCE the chances of craziness. As a matter of aesthetics, i personally tend to think that kreatyv spellings look silly, but that’s more about taste than anything else.

Wow, that seems ridiculous.
I can hardly imagine someone defaulting to a unique spelling when a common, old spelling is well known.

I’ve never had an issue with my name. But [name]Kim[/name] is almost impossible to misspell. I’ve heard of [name]Kym[/name]'s but have never had anyone try to spell my name that way.

I wouldn’t ever advise someone to do something that competes with common sense. I understand that some people like stranger spellings, but despite the fact that some people have a hard time spelling anything and everything I would still not encourage uncommon spellings over common ones. That would seem like bowing to poor education.

[name]Caroline[/name] gets written down as [name]Carolyn[/name] or [name]Carolina[/name] frequently, the worst though is twice I’ve had someone print my name (without much space between the o and the l I guess) and someone retype it from there as Cardine. :confused:

I agree that’s ridiculous; I would have expected that Grace is foolproof.

Edit: I’m actually getting cranky thinking about it. I have an unusual name and have spent my life patiently accepting the problems that come with that, but to get Grace wrong is just plain stupid

My name is [name]Lauren[/name] and you would be surprised at how many times people have spelled it wrong, and in how many different ways. I always say I never knew there were so many ways to spell it until I saw all the misspellings! I’ve gotten [name]Loren[/name], [name]Lauran[/name], [name]Lauryn[/name] and probably others many times.

Now if someone has to write or type my name for the first time, I ask if they know how to spell it or just spell it for them without their asking. I’m totally okay with people not knowing how to spell it, but I always appreciate it when they check with me.

There are so many unusual names and spellings these days that if I don’t know how to spell someone’s name, I ask before writing/typing it. [name]Even[/name] if it’s a really common name, like [name]Emily[/name]. You just never know.

I hate to say this, but I think the only place this is an issue is in the US. Going off what spring13 said, Americans in general are (or at least act like they are) poorly educated as compared to people in other countries. Ask any English teacher in a public high school and they will tell you that students today suffer from poor spelling, grammar, writing, reading, and language comprehension skills. This shows loud and clear in our SSA baby names statistics, where many “unique” spellings make no sense phonetically. Are phonics even taught in preschool and kindergarten anymore? Only in [name]America[/name] would you have an individual who assumes that [name]Grace[/name], a NOUN, is spelled [name]Grayce[/name].

Honestly, looking through the SSA stats (especially below the top 1000) just makes me want to cry. This mindset that names can be spelled in whatever nonsense way the parent wishes needs to go away. If you like playing with letters, consider a game of Scrabble instead.

My name is [name]Kylie[/name], and it is CONSTANTLY getting butchered. [name]IMO[/name], [name]Kylie[/name] is the only spelling that looks like you aren’t illiterate. I’ve gotten [name]Kylee[/name], [name]Kyleigh[/name], Kilee, Kilie, Kyelee, Kyelie, Kyeleigh, Kileigh, Keylee, Kaelee, Kaelie, etc.
I don’t understand how you misspell [name]Grace[/name]. From where I’m from, [name]Grace[/name] is [name]Grace[/name]. There are Katherines, with some simple variants, but nothing extreme. That’s as “crazy” as it gets out here: spelling [name]Catherine[/name]/[name]Katherine[/name] as [name]Kathryn[/name] or [name]Catharine[/name]. I hate all these “tryyndi3” and “kreatyv” spellings for names. People look like they dropped out of school in the first grade.

I get that a lot!! Jassmynn, [name]Jasmyn[/name], [name]Jazmin[/name], [name]Jazmine[/name], Jazmynn, [name]Yasmin[/name]…

…But [name]Grace[/name]?? Ugh…people these days…

~[name]Jasmine[/name] (The ORIGINAL way)

I guess every name has those issues! My name is [name]Jennifer[/name], and I’ve definitely had people assume it was spelled “[name]Jenifer[/name]” a few times. In my mind, if a person is going to assume anything about a name, it should be that it is a common name with a standard spelling, ie. [name]Grace[/name] not Greece or [name]Grayce[/name]. I’m shocked that you’re having that many issues with it, but it’s something to consider for those of us for whom “ease of use” is an issue in naming. Perhaps because there are so many variants and unusual spellings out there, we all just need to get used to spelling our names out (though I prefer to live in a world in which only uncommon names and non-standard spellings should need to be spelled out. I’ve learned to just go ahead and spell out my first name, in spite of how common it is and the fact that there are few oft-used variations, just to avoid name misspelling.

Haha! Exactly! What a totally ridiculous world we live in when it comes to names. I also have a very common name ([name]Emily[/name]) and I’m always surprised when people ask me how to spell it. When I was younger, I wished I would have had a “cooler” spelling to my name, but now I am infinitely glad I do not.

The one I get the most, is people missing the second ‘A’ out of my name, so they spell it [name]Margret[/name] instead of [name]Margaret[/name].

You might say “oh that’s an easy one to make”, but I don’t pronounce my name the “lazy way” (i.e. as [name]Margret[/name]), I pronounce it the proper way of mar-gah-ret, I make it very clear I have that second A in there!

I don’t understand how people misspell something as simple as Grace. Especially something that is a proper word. Especially in a country where religion is such a hot topic and almost everyone I know says grace before every meal. With names like Hannah which have two spellings like Hannah and Hanna I can understand a missing H but really no more than that. (Ann or Anne, and Sara or Sarah, etc).

There is something really disturbing about a country that thinks video games and television is as good of an activity for kids as playing outside. And that spelling doesn’t matter. I’m dyslexic and I think spelling is important. Yes children should be graded on their ideas but that doesn’t mean that we can neglect their ability to spell - it’s going to affect their ability to read. That isn’t going to help our illiteracy rate at all. (Which for a “leading” world country is disturbingly high).

PS: My name is Alexandra and I live 15 minutes away from Alexandria, VA. Everyone get’s my name wrong and thinks it’s Alexandria instead. It irks me, a lot but in this case I think it’s probably just the strong association. I never have this problem with my name when I’m away from the DC or VA.

@maggiemary and @lexiem, I totally understand.

I would never do that to your lovely name, [name]Margaret[/name].

Lexiem, my name is also [name]Alexandra[/name], and I live between [name]Philadelphia[/name] and New [name]York[/name], and people still assume that my name is [name]Alexandria[/name] (and I am very distinct in my pronunciation).

Also, I greatly dislike how everyone assumes my nickname is [name]Alex[/name]/[name]Alix[/name] and proceeds to use it within three seconds of knowing me. First of all, you need to ask permission before you use a diminutive, and secondly, while there is nothing wrong with that nickname, it’s not mine (I tried it, mainly to annoy my mother as a teen; it only succeeded in annoying me). By the by, my main nickname is [name]Alexa[/name], and I also am called [name]Ali[/name], [name]Lex[/name] (not [name]Lexie[/name], it’s not me at all), [name]Alex[/name] (pronounced like uh-lex, like the first syllable of [name]Alexa[/name]), [name]Sasha[/name], and [name]Alice[/name].

Literacy and playing (or a lack of both) are just another symptom of how our society (of the US) has warped priorities.

As a [name]Jessica[/name] I’ve rarely had my name misspelled. Spanish speakers I’ve known have spelled it Yessica or [name]Jesica[/name] occasionally, which are both common / accepted in Spanish. I have frequently had people confirm the spelling with me or my mother “how do you spell that?” “the normal way?” "c or k? “one s or two?”.

My husband [name]John[/name] very frequently gets [name]Jon[/name].

There is a documented cognitive process called priming. When you’ve seen something or heard something, you’re inclined to see and hear things related to it more easily in the near future. So if you’ve just met a [name]Grayson[/name], you’re more likely to spell [name]Grace[/name] as [name]Grayce[/name] etc. If you’ve just talked to a [name]Jonathan[/name], you’re more likely to spell [name]John[/name] as [name]Jon[/name]. If you’ve just talked toa [name]Yesenia[/name], you’re more likely to spell [name]Jessica[/name] as Yessica (if you speak Spanish).

So while it’s annoying that people are having these experiences, I agree, it’s hardly that crazy.

While I do think there is a literacy crisis in this country to some extent (this is the field I work in!), I’d encourage everyone to take a deep breath on this stuff.

While I vastly prefer standard spellings, I have a really hard time getting too torked off at parents using creative spellings since I have relationships with them and they are in most cases great parents who care about their kids (and when they’re not - that’s true about parents who use standard spellings, too). And in most cases these ARE parents who ARE good readers, spellers, writers! I have theories about why they use creative spellings anyway but that’s a whole other discussion.

End point: The amount of assumptions that people make sometimes are really overboard.

Yes! I totally agree with you and Spring13. While I was teaching last year I noticed a focus on math and a high leniency on spelling/grammar errors. The other teachers didn’t bat an eyelash at easy words that were not spelled right, there were no consequences (like “Please do this over”) and no extra learning for spelling except for kids that were high risk to start with. I believe it is only the younger generations. My mother’s generation, who picked more conventional names and didn’t have easy teachers, would never have an issue like this (I hope). They didn’t have technology or “text speak” or auto spell check, and had to make sure they learned English well in order to get a good career. My mom actually helped me transfer some of the names at the bottom of the SSA list to my blog and she couldn’t even guess what some of the misspellings were intended to be. I was so disgusted by some of the names. To me, this trend is a little bit like global warming (lol), we keep ignoring the problem, but what will the future look like? [name]Will[/name] the English language be completely ruined? Ahem…sorry for ranting.