Mary/May and middle name?

Desperately trying to figure out middle name to go with a first name of Mary, who will be called May. Things that go well with Mary don't seem to go as well with May, given the syllable difference, and I have a family member who likes to say both first and middle names together (case in point: my daughter Eve Louise is called just that-- both names-- by him) and I want to make sure that whether he goes with Mary or May when he refers to her (I will be nudging him towards May-- that's what we intend for her to always be called) that the middle name sounds good with it. 

Ironically, Louise feels like it would be perfect-- but we used that with our other daughter when we thought she'd be our only girl (this is a surprise baby for us!) A little extra background: my late dad was named James, and I love the idea of honoring him somehow, but my husband just won't go for James for a girl in any way. Mary Jane is no good because it's slang for marijuana. I thought about Julia-- same first initial-- but May Julia doesn't sound great to me? I am a Kathleen by birth (a name my dad picked for me) so I am wondering about Kathleen? Mary Kathleen? Is that the most ultra-Irish name of all time? 

Open to any ideas-- thanks!


November 1, 2019 4:52 PM

Mary Brynn

Mary Isabel

Mary Willow

Mary Gail

Mary Jade

Mary Clair

Mary Renee

Mary Elaine

Mary Olivia

Mary Noelle

Mary Jacquelyn

Mary Christine 

November 1, 2019 5:37 PM

Jacqueline, Jaclyn  have the same meaning as James.  I love Mary Kathleen

other names  Ellen, Anne, Beth, Belle, Adeline, Caroline, Annabel, Abigail, Angelique, Bianca, Celeste, Rosa, Rose, Stella, Lynn, Lee, Ella, Jessica, Josephine, Julianne, Juliet, Julianna, Jocelyn, Johanna, Jennifer, Jessamy Elise Alice Bethany Elizabeth Alexandra Angeline Annalise Genevieve Lily Sophia Tessa Sylvie Susannah Victoria Rebekah Cassandra Vanessa

November 1, 2019 5:41 PM

Mary Ellen

Mary Blythe

Mary Susan

Mary Therese

Mary Charlotte

Mary Pearl

November 5, 2019 10:20 PM

Mary Kathleen is indeed very Irish, but in a delightful way! I think May Kathleen as a name unit doesn’t work as well for me, as I think it sounds like a sentence (“May Kath lean on this post?”). Kath is particularly problematic because it somehow sounds like a lispy or abbreviated attempt at a word to me. This would be a total nonissue if Kathleen is a usually hidden middle name, but seems more problematic if you intend to keep it in regular circulation as a double name.

May Jamesina or Mary Jamesina? 



November 8, 2019 3:10 AM

Okay: I am confused!  Let's back up:

1. You want to name baby after your late father James, but doesn't work on a girl (I 100% with your husband on that!).

2. I am totally lost on why Mary or May has anything to do with James.  Or is that just a name you like?

3. If you are going to call her May, then why are you naming her Mary?  I get nicknames when the full name is a mouthful like Penelope, but Mary doesn't need to be shortened so what's the point?

Amidst this confusion -- there are a few girl names that are a more explicit nod to James.  Like Jamie!  Although often a nickname, I think it works perfectly well as a full name.  Another fun fact: Etta James' real name was Jamesetta Hawkins.  You could also do something like JAnine MESila or something -- note that first letters of those two names add up to James.

Is there another way you could honor your father instead of his name exactly?  For example, his favorite.... something?  My father was Richard which doesn't translate to girl honor names either, and in the end I middle-named my daughter after my grandmother.  But I considered Rosetta to honor dad, both because of the R beginning and because he was a linguistics professor (a la "Rosetta Stone").  It seemed like a good workaround, although I didn't go with it in the end.  The point is, there might be other ways to name your daughter after your dad.

For the record, I love and adore the name Mary and think it is long overdue for a comeback.






November 9, 2019 10:31 AM

Hey! Sounds like you're going for something a little more traditional so I picked out traditional names and also looked for some J names (for your dad) to take a look at. I tried to make sure they sounded alright with both Mary and May! :


J Names

- Judy

- Julianne 

- Julia

- Josephine

- Joanne / Joanna

- Jemima

- Jannette (Jan-net rather than Janet)


Non-J Names

- Alice

- Cara

- Arleen

- Delia

- Bridget 

- Etta

- Susie 


Hope that helps! Good luck with the baby.