Unnaceptable Unisex Names..

A funny, recent post about a co-worker getting mad about “unisex” names got me to thinking… Unisex, or “boy for girl” names is a very, very popular trend… Which I know bothers alot of people… so Im wondering… what names do you think are OK to use for both sexes, and which names are COMPLTETELY one-gendered…

Personally, I LOOOVE boy-names-for-a-girl… My top #3 baby girl choices are… [name]Sawyer[/name], [name]Finley[/name] & [name]Lennox[/name]…
([name]Feel[/name] free to share your honest opinion… my feelings wont be hurt! I love honesty!)

There are a handful of names that I don’t mind on either sex, but for the most part I absolutely cannot stand this trend of using boy’s names on girls. It’s such a double standard. Why is it that a girl can have a masculine name like [name]Jordan[/name] or [name]Ryan[/name], yet a boy can’t have a once-masculine-now-feminine name like [name]Ashley[/name] or [name]Meredith[/name]? [name]Will[/name] a girl be masculine and tough if she is given a boy’s name? No. [name]Will[/name] a boy be feminine and weak if he is given a “girl’s” name? Absolutely not. However, the common consensus is that once a name becomes popular for girls it can no longer be used for boys. If this trend continues at the rate it is now, in another two generations or so our boys will have to use the last four numbers of their social security number as their name. It just isn’t fair to the boys for the girls to continue stealing names from them. That’s my opinion.

Hm. A tough one! Personally, of yours, I think [name]Sawyer[/name] and [name]Finley[/name] can cross the gender gap pretty well, though I like [name]Finn[/name] for a boy and not for a girl - a female [name]Finley[/name] would always be [name]Finley[/name] to me. [name]Sawyer[/name], I really like for a girl, though! [name]Lennox[/name] is a tough one because [name]Leni[/name] - as in [name]Heidi[/name] Klum’s [name]Helene[/name] “[name]Leni[/name]” - seems youthful, feminine, and sassy to me, though [name]Lennox[/name] is so strong and masculine. So, I’ll call that one a boy name for me.

So, what would I use on a boy? [name]Cameron[/name]. Yep, that one could go either way; I think it is suitable for a boy just as much as a girl. The last couple [name]Drew[/name]'s I’ve met have been girls, and, alone, I think it’s fine for a girl - [name]Andrew[/name] is preferable for a boy, though, with [name]Drew[/name] being a nickname to me. [name]Eliot[/name], though it wouldn’t be my first choice for a girl, seems like it is crossing that gender gap pretty well. [name]Peyton[/name]'s an iffy one for me - I like the sound of it for a girl, but then [name]Peyton[/name] [name]Manning[/name] is so popular that it seems rather masculine, so I say that one’s good on both genders. [name]Quinn[/name] is another that bridges that gap very well - I adore it for a girl, but I could see it on a boy, too, for sure! [name]Rory[/name] is definitely one that crosses gender boundaries - again, I prefer it slightly for a girl, but I definitely like it on a boy, too. [name]Mackenzie[/name] is a unisex name that I really think sounds neat when applied to a boy, especially with the semi-preppy [name]Mac[/name] nickname…

What would I only use for girls? Well, I suppose place names like [name]Bristol[/name] and [name]Brighton[/name] could be construed as unisex, but they are female for me. [name]Delaney[/name] is all-girl, too. [name]Ellis[/name] and [name]Hollis[/name] are girl, but [name]Ferris[/name] (thanks to Mister [name]Bueller[/name]) is boy. [name]Harper[/name] and [name]Hayden[/name] are girls, even though [name]Hayden[/name] Christensen is a fine example of a male [name]Hayden[/name]. [name]Morgan[/name], even though the last one I met was a boy, is just more appropriate for a girl in my book, too.

[name]Lemon[/name] :slight_smile:

I have a name that was historically male and became an almost exclusively girls name later and I hate that. I consider very few names truly unisex. Nicknames, to me, are unisex- there’s no reason [name]Quinn[/name] can’t be a nickname for [name]Quintina[/name] and it makes just as much sense for a [name]Wilhelmina[/name] to go by [name]Billy[/name] as it does for a [name]William[/name]- so for names like that I consider them more nicknames as first than unisex. Some names are unisex depending on the language or culture ([name]Rosario[/name], for instance) and others are sound and often spelled the same but have different etymological origins ([name]Noa[/name] and [name]Noah[/name]). There are also a handful of names that originated as unisex names- they have been unisex for as long as their history can be traced ([name]Micaiah[/name] or modern invented names like [name]Jaylen[/name]). But other than those few exceptions, I strongly dislike unisex names. Maybe if it was okay for boys to be named [name]Ava[/name] I’d be okay with girls named [name]Sawyer[/name], but that’s not the case.

For the most part I’m against it. I don’t understand WHY it keeps happening. I personally don’t want my child to be a “[name]Chris[/name] or [name]Pat[/name]” of this generation. You hear one of those names and you have no idea if it is a woman or a man. Why would you want that? I’m not going to criticize or yell at people for doing it, but I die a little inside everytime I hear a girl with the name [name]Rowan[/name]. It is our top pick for a boy, but I’m slowly losing faith in a name that is being “stolen”.

I think some names should be left for the boys. If a boy was named [name]Allison[/name] then people would be highly offended. That’s how mother’s of boy’s feel when there is a girl named [name]Peyton[/name] in their son’s class when the boy peyton was named after the manning.

Unnaceptable unisex names are:


These are all boys names, the meanings say so as well.

I’m really against boy’s names/surnames on girls for a number of reasons, but mostly that I really feel it would be doing the girl a disservice to saddle her with a boy’s name, and all for the sake of a “cute” or “strong-sounding” name. Another reason is that surnames and boy’s names on girls are not legitimate names, which is a big deal for me. There’s a reason most surnames/boy’s names are trendy, not classic. I would absolutely hate having a boy’s name, so I would never do that to my daughter. I agree with everyone else’s comments on stealing from the pool of boy’s names as well.

Back to the original question: I think the only true unisex names are nature names like [name]Rowan[/name] and names that have had a very long history of use for both genders, like [name]Vivian[/name], [name]Evelyn[/name], or [name]Meredith[/name]. I still might have irrational qualms about using a name like that, but at least she won’t be mistaken for a boy and they’re not trendy names. So for me the unacceptable unisex names are surnames (most of which have masculine meanings) and boy’s names.

Actually, [name]Allison[/name] is a legitimate girl’s name; it’s a medieval diminutive of [name]Alice[/name]. But I agree with the rest of the names on your list. :slight_smile:

We’re starting to see a reaction to that, with more names not falling when they get used for girls (e.g. [name]Avery[/name] and [name]Riley[/name] are remaining fairly steady for boys in spite of their high girl’s rankings). This is one of the points I mentioned in a long PM to [name]Pam[/name] about an article she’s doing on boy’s names.

I agree with so many of you. I really am against the trend. I feel bad for the boys that get named a great “boys name” only to have it become the latest trendy girls name 5 years later. I have never been a fan of unisex names in general. My neighbor is thinking about naming her daughter [name]Elliot[/name] and it seriously makes me want to cry! That is such a great BOYS name, it needs to stay that way in my opinion.

I think you are all over reacting. I like boys names for girls.
Someone said that a boy cant be named [name]Ava[/name] so no way a girl can be [name]Sawyer[/name]; nobody named their son [name]Ava[/name] yet. Maybe if more people give their sons ‘female’ names, in a few years it will be accepted, just as with the boys names on girls.

There is no such thing of ‘stealing’ names from one another. If you like the name, use it for crying out loud! Why does it matter that a girl has the same name as a boy? If you truly love a name, nothing can stop you from using it.

The note of the name being a number is just silly, there are so many boys names, and so many girls names and so many in between.

I think it is a big deal because it is not accepted that a boy cries, that a boy is a little softer, emotional, is an artist, is a balletdancer, is gay because that is classified as girls territory. And girl can cry, can be emotional, can love men, can do ballet, … People dont want their girl to be boyish, they just liked that name for some reason or another. Woman are doing everything now, they do 'man’things so this ‘trend’ is naturally a concequense of it. Its just that most people dont want their ‘boy’ to be ‘girly’ and so they dont want to give them a name that is used on one girl or another. That is just silly.

Im getting upset because everybody is getting upset about this, jeez let it go and use the name you love.

The last year there was 1 [name]Finley[/name] born in Belgium. It was a girl. In the last 10 years, about 7 [name]Finley[/name] were girls and 10 were boys. 4 girl Finlays and 3 boy [name]Finlay[/name]. With a total of 11 girls and 13 boys. That seems pretty unisex for me? It doesnt even really matter what name it is, as long as you like it, like to hear and say it.

I totally agree with you, You can never, ever know a parents intention when naming their child… My grandmothers maiden name was [name]Davison[/name], so [name]Ive[/name] always wanted that to me my future daughters middle name… some may look at it and think I wanted her to have a boys name, but in fact I want her to be named after the most important female in my life.
I also think it is perfectly acceptable for a boy to have a name like [name]Brooklyn[/name], [name]Kelly[/name] or [name]Ashley[/name].

For me, I would much, MUCH rather have a girl named [name]Kyle[/name], [name]Lennox[/name] or [name]Sawyer[/name] then named something like [name]June[/name],[name]Sarah[/name] or [name]Lisa[/name]. hey just seem boring and unoriginal to me ([name]Just[/name] my opinion, again, back to my comment above, we can never know a parents intention, maybe [name]Lisa[/name] or [name]June[/name] was a grandmother, mother or role model, and thats perfectly OK)

I think this is a really tricky question and one which I have no answer to. Personally, I’m not a fan of unisex names–not out of some deep philosophical reason, I just happen to like vintage girls names and strong boys names–most of which don’t have an history of being unisex.

I think parents should consider a few things when choosing a unisex name (either direction.) 1. Am I comfortable with my child facing some level of others questioning their gender? Regardless of our philosophy on names, other people (who may not think about names all the time) will influence my child and her/his attitude towards their name and personality. 2. [name]Do[/name] I think a unisex name somehow will give my child a “sense” of the other gender? Giving a girl the name [name]Tucker[/name] because it is a “strong” name indicates that “[name]Arabella[/name]” is NOT a strong name–do you believe this? (I’m not judging, but just naming your child [name]Tucker[/name] because it is cute means you haven’t thought these implications through.) Is this really challenging gender norms, or just reinforcing them by breaking the rules. 3. [name]Will[/name] this name age well/what are the cultural implications of this name? EVERYONE should ask this question–but it is especially important for parents considering unisex names because their child will have to live in a society that makes cultural judgments and assumptions. Some parents will think that naming their child something unisex is a great way to encourage their child and others to challenge cultural norms, but others may decide that children aren’t the forum for such cultural resistance.

Sorry that was so long, but I think that these are questions that people should consider. That said, I think nn’s are the best place for unisex: [name]Charlotte[/name] nn [name]Charlie[/name], [name]Matilda[/name] nn [name]Matt[/name]. I’m not a fan of most other unisex names, but I don’t hate them.


I prefer strong male names for boys and feminine names for girls.
I think unisex names are harder to wear for boys than girls. It is more acceptable for girls to have a unisex name than a boy. Names like [name]Ashley[/name] and [name]Madison[/name] that reach such popularity heights for girls no longer seem unisex to me (even though they are historically male). They have become feminine names. I can see a girl being named [name]Finley[/name], [name]Devon[/name], etc. but naming a girl [name]Ryan[/name] or [name]Elliot[/name] IS taking a perfectly good boy name and making it unusable for boys. I can see where it would be annoying to mothers of male Ryans and Elliots. Like it or not, boys don’t want “girly” names.
There are some names I like for both genders, of course, I just wouldn’t personally use them. I think it’s fine for other people to use unisex names. It just really isn’t my style.

Honestly, I can’t stand unisex names. They are not fresh and unique (as some parents think) but tired and played out. However, I don’t think that girls need a frilly name or boys a hyper-macho name either. I love softer names for boys, like my son’s name [name]Jude[/name] and names like [name]Teddy[/name], [name]Rhys[/name], and [name]Jasper[/name]. I also love girls names with spunk, like [name]Eliza[/name], or names that are classy without being precious, like [name]Imogen[/name]. Names like these are way more distinctive then slapping your daughter with [name]Elliot[/name] or [name]Rowan[/name], and definitely classier.

I think it’s so interesting how deeply people feel about this topic - in some respects it’s almost like politics. Some people are always going to hate the notion while others are totally on board with the idea; there just isn’t a whole lot of people in the middle on this.

I think that maybe in the past a traditional masculine name bestowed on a girl had a bit of daring and edginess to it. Perhaps it was like something new and unusual, yet familiar. (We’ve all been there, right?) Today, it seems to be just the opposite, with so many trendy girls names being unisex, it has just become the norm. Looking at the big picture of the current progression of society, it is only natural. Personally, I really admire the choice to name a boy a unisex name. [name]Riley[/name], [name]Finlay[/name], [name]Quinn[/name], [name]Rowan[/name], [name]Bryn[/name], etc. are all adorably cute on girls but they are also super handsome on boys. I would love to see even more ‘unisex’ names be used more frequently on the boys. Honestly, a boy with a unisex name seems (to me) even more strongly masculine than one with a name that has always been ‘male’. Not that I would encourage boys to be named [name]Meredith[/name] or [name]Ashley[/name] (those are pretty much gone), but I think that there are still several that can go both ways.

Personally, I don’t always understand when people choose to name their girls a unisex name when there are so many gorgeous feminine girls names out there to choose from. But in all honesty, I don’t really care. It’s not like a female [name]Kendall[/name] is going to have a ‘masculine’ personality and always be a tomboy, nor is an [name]Isabella[/name] going to always have to be a princessy girly-girl. Luckily, a person’s name doesn’t determine their character or define who they are. I know of so many little girl Averys and Rileys that the names don’t even strike me as having a ‘male’ or ‘female’ quality anymore, they just are as they are. Maybe it’s the unisex name’s ability to transcend the gender barriers that is in essence what makes them so popular and attractive to parents of both the boys and the girls.

Thats my point in all this though, who is to say you are slapping your child with any old name… What if, after having 2-3 daughters, and then having another, and your last, you still havent been able to name your child, say, [name]Rowan[/name], after your father/brother, or some other male role model in your life… do you just not use the name at all because some people find it not “classy”?

What really is fresh and unique anymore? Because the moment a celebrity names their child something once thought of as unique, its all downhill in that department… (and it doesnt matter if you dont follow celeb baby names, or if you intended on your child having that name… or even if your child is older than said celeb-baby… Names like [name]Rumer[/name], [name]Honor[/name], [name]Harlow[/name], [name]Coco[/name], Zuma, [name]Suri[/name]… will always get that “oh, like _________'s baby?”) So, are we also not supposed to name our children names we have always loved beause a celeb loves them as well?
I appreciate evryones honesty and replies… It just strikes me as odd, the whole “original” thing we all talk about… [name]How[/name] often are names really, truley original? You know?

I’m not a huge fan of unisex names for fn but I do think they add a little spunk as a mn.
[name]Elliot[/name], [name]Ryan[/name] and [name]Kyle[/name] will always be boys names for me though!

Why would that name be unusable? Maybe boys dont want ‘girly’ names but many of you think [name]Elliot[/name] is a boys names, not a girl name so why not use it? Everyone seem to think it is a boy name so one or two (thousand) girls with that name DONT make it a girly name. ITs unisex.

Why would that name be unusable? Maybe boys dont want ‘girly’ names but many of you think [name]Elliot[/name] is a boys names, not a girl name so why not use it? Everyone seem to think it is a boy name so one or two (thousand) girls with that name DONT make it a girly name. ITs unisex.

OH.MY.GOSH I Agree with you 1,000,000,000%!!!

Everyone always say that girls can do whatever they want. So why can’t they have a “masculine” name? Why is that a bad thing? Why can they have “strong” names but boys can’t have “soft” names? I love [name]Angel[/name] for a boy and would whole-heartedly name my son that or [name]Makenzie[/name], [name]Lesley[/name], [name]Ashley[/name], [name]Alexis[/name], [name]Emerson[/name], ect. Girls aren’t making boy names “unusable” no matter how much you want to think that. I think it would be awesome to see more peopl name they little boys “girl” names. I just really don’t understand people you all are basically saying boys can’t have girl things. It would be more exceptible if people did still use “names that are taken by girls” for boys. I think it’s like the whole guys can’t wear pink thing to be honest!