Real Life Reactions to Your Favorite Names

I recently had an utterly delightful with my sister about what we’d each like to name our children. Upon hearing some of my list, she had a great reaction!

[name_m]Shepherd[/name_m]: That’s not even a name!
[name_m]Gideon[/name_m]: [name_m]How[/name_m] terrible!
[name_u]Paxton[/name_u]: Slightly better than [name_m]Shepherd[/name_m] and [name_m]Gideon[/name_m].
[name_u]Bravery[/name_u]: Why not just find a name that means bravery?

She was less upset by my favorite girl names, and when I asked her what she thought I should name my babies based on my personality, she said [name_m]Simon[/name_m] and [name_f]Clara[/name_f]. Which . . . Is actually very accurate.

What are some of the best/worst/funniest reactions you’ve got when discussing favorite names with non-name nerds?


I haven’t had the guts to mention my favourite names to my family just yet. I was watching a TV program about birth with my mum last week & one of the newborn babies was named [name_u]Hunter[/name_u], in response to which she went on a rant about how it “isn’t even a name” :roll_eyes: I tried to explain to her that [name_u]Hunter[/name_u] is actually a very popular name, but she’s stuck in the age of [name_m]John[/name_m] and [name_m]Craig[/name_m]. I hate to imagine how she might react to [name_u]Harlow[/name_u] or [name_f]Tuesday[/name_f].


[name_u]June[/name_u] and [name_f]Joy[/name_f]: old lady names!
[name_u]Skye[/name_u]: too new age-y!
[name_u]Willow[/name_u]: that’s weird!
[name_u]Kit[/name_u]: that’s not a full name!

All from my darling mother. Usually it’s “Oh, no, I don’t like that.”


I told my mom I wanted to name my first daughter [name_f]Estelle[/name_f] and she told me that it was an “old lady name” (that’s the point) and that it was the name of a woman that annoyed my grandmother (who the baby would be named after). I’m trying to decide if that means it can’t be an honor name or not.

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When I first approached names with my mom, I mentioned using [name_m]Wesley[/name_m] to honor [name_u]Lee[/name_u]. Her reaction: “[name_m]Wesley[/name_m] doesn’t honor [name_u]Lee[/name_u]. If you want to honor [name_u]Lee[/name_u], you use [name_u]Lee[/name_u]. Otherwise I won’t see it as an honor name.” I’m using [name_u]Lee[/name_u], but I’m fine with that. The only other name I’ve asked her about was [name_m]Donald[/name_m]. She loves the name as it was her father’s name, but she had no opinion on my using the name.

I stopped asking her about names after that.

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[name_f]My[/name_f] mom and I talk names quite a bit, she doesn’t like [name_f]Heather[/name_f] or [name_f]Stephanie[/name_f], but she’s still pretty tolerant about them and reminds me that she had her chance to name kids so she’s not going to try and convince me one way or another unless I ask.

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[name_f]My[/name_f] mum’s a bit of a closet name nerd, so she appreciates a lot of the name I like (apart from [name_f]Astrid[/name_f], I couldn’t convince her on that one :sob:) But [name_f]Juno[/name_f], [name_f]Cleo[/name_f], [name_f]Theodora[/name_f], [name_f]Hermione[/name_f], [name_f]Anouk[/name_f], [name_f]Paloma[/name_f], [name_f]Nell[/name_f], [name_u]Kit[/name_u], [name_m]Caspar[/name_m], [name_u]River[/name_u], [name_u]Jem[/name_u], [name_u]Rex[/name_u], [name_u]Rafe[/name_u], [name_u]Sasha[/name_u]… all thumbs up from her.

[name_f]My[/name_f] dad mispronounces everything but is pretty tolerant. I don’t think he’d say anything if he hated a name I loved.

[name_f]My[/name_f] brother pulled a face at [name_f]Tess[/name_f] and [name_f]Nell[/name_f]. I don’t think he loves the scullery maid vibe. And my other brother genuinely suggested Magna, Polka and [name_u]Sparrow[/name_u] for my eldest daughter, and has wilder taste than me when it comes to names.

[name_f]My[/name_f] MIL has great taste! Her three children have very “ahead of the curve” names, and she was all in for calling DH [name_f]Electra[/name_f] if he’d been a girl!

I’m so blessed :wink:


I don’t usually talk to my friends about the names I like just because they are so unique and they basically hate all of them. I do however bounce them off of my mom all the time. Usually she doesn’t like them, they’re too unique (ie [name_m]Acacius[/name_m] and Jemison (g)), too weird (ie [name_m]Archimedes[/name_m]), or just plain horrible (ie [name_m]Lysander[/name_m]). There are a few that she likes though and usually they are more “normal” names like [name_m]Beauregard[/name_m], [name_m]Fergus[/name_m], or [name_u]Sailor[/name_u] (g). She rarely says “don’t ever name your kid that” unless it’s clearly a guilty pleasure. A lot of times, just to mess with her, I’ll say “what about [name_m]Cleophas[/name_m]?” And she just looks at me like I’ve lost my mind😂. About 50% of the time I’ll say a name and she’ll either break into a song about that name or mention a famous person that has than name.

She’s usually not too mean about it, thankfully. And I know when it comes time for me to name a baby she really won’t care and if she doesn’t like the name she’ll just give it a nickname that has nothing to do with it’s actual name (ie [name_u]Bean[/name_u] or [name_u]Peanut[/name_u]).

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The only irl reaction I’ve had to a name I like has, unfortunately, been one from a friend.

[name_f]Shoshannah[/name_f]: (laughs hysterically) [name_f]Shoshannah[/name_f]? What kind of name is that?

I now never tell any of my friends my favorite names.

I mentioned [name_f]Sarai[/name_f] and was immediately met with the comment psoriasis?

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[name_f]My[/name_f] favourite choices are quite classic, so most people are okay with them, but [name_f]Adelina[/name_f] has received a few raised eyebrows - my favourite was from one of my mum’s cousins who lives in Spain and said “that’s the name of a bar near our house”!

@Greyblue [name_f]Sarai[/name_f] is a great name. [name_f]My[/name_f] only question is: [name_m]How[/name_m] does one get psoriasis from [name_f]Sarai[/name_f]? :confused:

They do sound a little similar to be honest but i don’t think overly so

when the conversation arises i do mention my names to my sisters and mum, and like a few of you are met with looks of concern but my theory is if i drip feed a few of the names i love now, by the time i actually have kids they won’t be surprised!! haha

my older sister tells me i need to be wealthy or a celebrity to use these names.

my younger sister is supportive and normally, well at least tries, to find the good in each name i suggest as we have complete opposite tastes (older/normal names: [name_f]Claudia[/name_f], [name_f]Alice[/name_f], [name_u]Rowan[/name_u]) but i’m sometimes (a lot of the time) met with an oh my gosh…

my mum doesn’t overly comment as she has accepted the fact that my kids aren’t going to have normal names, so doesn’t comment to tell me no or shut me down! haha

my nan is very supportive and tells me her honest opinion on names! she even has started writing names down when she comes across some that she thinks might interest me!

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What is a normal name? [name_f]My[/name_f] (distant) cousin has kids named H@yden, Ow3n and No@h, and when her brother had his kids named [name_m]Willi[/name_m]@m and J@ck, their mom (the boys’ grandma) said “Oh, thank God, normal names!”

Normal is vastly overrated and highly subjective.

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Your nan sounds great!

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[name_m]Shepherd[/name_m] is such a great name! I don’t really talk with family members or friends about names in case they either say mean things or steal my names before I get to use them :joy:. The names I enjoy are pretty normal for Nameberry, but I think they’re far too outré for some of my family members.

I haven’t shared my favourite names with anyone besides my SO in years. I always get strange looks or rude comments (“thats not a real name”, “your kid will hate you”, ect).
[name_f]My[/name_f] mother when confronted with my love for [name_m]Clarence[/name_m] [name_m]Eugene[/name_m] (a favourite I moved past after so much repeated backlash) she wanted to know if I was planning to name an old man instead of a baby (when my cousin named his baby [name_m]Norm[/name_m] she thought that was great). But my mother has never had anything nice to say about any of my favourite names outside of [name_f]Rose[/name_f] and [name_f]Elsa[/name_f].
Ganymede was met with some very strange stares at a Thanksgiving lunch when I was a teenager.
[name_f]My[/name_f] sister absolutely hates the name [name_f]Farah[/name_f] (she thinks it sounds too much like fairy, which is what I like about it) but I would still use it as a name to honour her (her name is [name_f]Karah[/name_f] after our mothers best friend [name_f]Tarah[/name_f] who was in turn named after her grandmother [name_f]Sarah[/name_f]).
But when you’re a lifelong name nerd and you love some very obscure and little-used names, you get used to nobody really understanding your name tastes.

When choosing a name for our daughter, we got a lot of not so great feedback. But in the end it’s our decision so we would still pick a name even if our family didn’t love it.
We ended up calling her [name_f]Kamila[/name_f] [name_f]Eliana[/name_f]
These are reactions we got:

Eliana : Eww that’s an old lady name
[name_f]Fiona[/name_f] : no granddaughter of mine will be named after a fat ogre
[name_u]Evelyn[/name_u] : that’s the name of my ex-girlfriend’s mom (said by my husband)
[name_f]Felicia[/name_f] : Bye [name_f]Felicia[/name_f]
[name_f]Kamila[/name_f] : why not [name_f]Camelia[/name_f]? It sounds nicer


I actually like more classic names and my partner likes really unusual names :joy:

Me: “What do you think of [name_f]Maia[/name_f]?”
Him: “Boring and overused.”

Him: “Let’s name our children [name_f]Aster[/name_f], [name_u]Wilder[/name_u] (Pronouned “[name_m]Will[/name_m]-der”), Agamemnon, etc.”
Me: “Um, please can we not?”

Especially, [name_f]Aster[/name_f]. This mf loves that name so much! :sob: