Can't Agree On Boy Name.

We've got two little girls, Megan Alexandra and Lucy Jasmine, and we're expecting a little boy in December. We found out with both our girls in advance so didn't have any boys names picked, but it seems with this lad we've got completely different naming styles. I like names such as Thomas and Joshua, whereas he's more into the surname trend and loves Mason (though I've nixed this as we've already got a daughter with the M initial) and Tyler. My objection to these names is that our surname is one that is also sometimes used as a first name, though I've never met a child with it, and I don't want our child to be confused by teachers etc reading his name the wrong way round. I just need us to find that happy medium of a boy's name, or I fear we'll end up having to call him Phoebe (our girls' pick before we knew genders) and be done with it. Surname's two syllables, ends in -er and you can probably guess the start from my screen name :P


September 16, 2012 11:57 AM

Instead of Mason, why not Jason? It's only different by one letter & sound, and two-syllables-ends-in-'n' fits modern trends perfectly... Yeah, it's definitely Dad-name territory, but that'd just mean he wouldn't share his name with any contemporaries, which is something that most parents desire.

With an -er occupation for a surname, I'd steer well clear of that class of surname-names (Tyler, Hunter, Tanner, etc.), as well as Peter and Connor -- the "x-er x-er" thing ends up sounding cartoony (Peter Parker!).

You could look at older surname-names (ones that crossed into given name territory far enough back that most people don't see them as surnames), like Travis or Garrett -- these may appeal to your husband's taste for the surname trend, while still being classic and name-like enough to appeal to you. Another option is to consider given names that many people know better as surnames, like Austin, Simon, or Elliott. Either approach has the possibility of name-order confusion (if you know several little boys named Parker, and someone with the surname Travis, then Travis Parker will sound like it's missing a comma), but there's only so much you can do to prevent that, especially nowadays when *anything* is fair game as a given name. (Exton? Trenton? Camden? Leviathan??)

September 16, 2012 12:03 PM

A lot of the popular surname as first names have similar cadences.  There are the 2 syllables ending in "en" names like Mason, and the 2 syllable, ending in "er" names like Tyler.  If you husband is more attracted to the cadence of these names, he might find some more classic names with a similar sound appealing.  Brendan, Brennan, Owen, Evan, Asher, Trevor, Arthur.

You might find a more modern or surname name with a classic nickname appealing.  Jackson/Jack, Davis/Dave/Davey, Jameson/James, Maxwell/Max, Clayton/Clay, Wilson/Will.


September 16, 2012 9:50 PM

Your husband's choices strike me as modern and sporty.

I agree with you on not doubling up on a surname, but perhaps a more modern sounding classic would appeal to you both.



Nicholas nn Nico or Cole






Elias or Elijah nn Eli

If you did find a non er ending surname name that you both loved, I think the issue of confusion would come up on occasion, but probably not so often to nix a choice you both agreed on. My maiden name was a woman's first name, and I sometimes ran into confusion because of that and the odd spelling of my fn, but it wasn't a big problem in the grand scheme of things.