Name dilemma, Fanny



I need some advise, I'm a swedish girl named Fanny, a really common name in Sweden. I'm aware of

the names less positive meaning in english speaking countries (vagina, butt). I'm moving to the US for

a while and thinking about how to adapt my name to the American culture. So I'm thinking about calling

myself Franny which is close enough to my actual name but without the negative meaning. My question

is if the name is considered strange or has any negative use that I'm not aware of?


Best regards



November 10, 2014 12:34 PM

I teach high school in the US, and one of my students is named Fanny.  To the best of my knowledge, she is not teased, but she is extremely shy.


Franny strikes me as a bit dated.  I would expect a Fran(ny) to be in her 70s or 80s.


Other options would be to drop the F and go by Annie, or drop the y and go by Fan.

By mk
November 10, 2014 1:27 PM

Franny is not considered strange or negative in the US. It's mainly used as a nickname so you may get people asking you for your full name, but that's it really.

November 10, 2014 1:40 PM

I have a friend named Tiffany and some of her close friends call her Fanny. I just can't bring myself to call her "Butt", essentially. I agree with Julie. Franny or Fran sounds like a much older woman. Annie/Ann/Anne would be a great alternative and is a classic American name, suitable for any age. 

November 10, 2014 4:50 PM

Fanny is less bad in America than in the UK or Australia -- here, it's just an affectionate euphemism for the rear end (like "tushy" or "bum"), while in other places it's a bit more vulgar.

A few years ago I would've agreed with other posters who feel that Fran(ny) is an 80-year-old, but I've now met a 30-something Fran and a child Francesca, so I think Franny should be completely useable for a young person. It makes perfect sense as an alternative to your name in Swedish, since Fanny is originally a variant of Franny. (The same process yielded Kit as a nickname for Christopher, and Biddy as a nickname for Bridget -- although you can be glad that your name's not Biddy, nowadays.)

All that said, people's associations with names are highly malleable. If I met a person named Fanny, I wouldn't think of slang words for rear ends. I might ask if it's a nickname for Frances or Francesca, but that's about it.

By EVie
November 17, 2014 5:48 PM

I feel like "fanny" for "butt" is a very dated slang term in the U.S.--I've only ever heard older people use it, or read it in books. I'm in my early thirties, and it's definitely not a word that is commonly used among my contemporaries, though people know what it means. And even if people do use it, it's a pretty gentle slang term, more affectionate than crude. So all in all, I think you would be pretty safe using your actual name in an American context. I can't speak for a British context, though I think that although the slang meaning there is more crude, it's also more familiar as a given name, which might counterbalance any negative response. 

November 18, 2014 5:56 PM

I agree with this -- it's a dated, very mild euphemism in the US.