Mamas, Don't Name Your Son 'Shirley'

Mom Moment 45

Choosing the perfect name for your new baby can definitely be one of the biggest challenges that parents face immediately after the child is born. I mean -- this is just one area that you really can't afford to screw up, right? After all, your kid will ultimately be stuck with whatever name you pick until he or she is at least 18. (No pressure.)

As more and more parents struggle to find unique names for their babies, there seems to be a growing trend in using traditional girl names for baby boys and also using more masculine names for baby girls. And while there are some pretty good name choices that seem to work equally well for both sexes, some seem a little too far on either side of the spectrum.

Somehow little boys named "Shirley" or baby girls named "Matt" just don't seem to have a very nice ring to them. There's definitely a line between names that are unisex and those that really aren't, that's for sure!

But when it comes to giving your baby a name that is more commonly associated with his or her opposite sex, baby boys are usually the ones who wind up with names that result in them getting made fun of growing up. With all of the bullying that occurs between kids these days, there is already enough to worry about as far as raising a little boy goes without adding fuel to the fire by giving him a name that is best fit for a girl.

When I was pregnant, I had my heart set on a modern yet totally adorable girl name. I loved the name so much that I even started picturing it in wooden block letters on the wall above the crib in my nursery before my first trimester was even over. I was obsessed with that name, and I couldn't wait to officially give it to my baby girl.

But then I went in to have my sonogram at 20 weeks and found out that I was actually going to be welcoming a baby boy -- not the little girl that I had already envisioned. And as much as I loved that girl name and thought there was a chance that it could also work for my baby boy, I just couldn't shake the idea of him being teased on the playground because his name had the "ey" sound at the end of it. It didn't seem fair to set him up for being made fun of by his classmates, all because I fell in love with a name that was more on the feminine side. We wound up shifting gears completely and going with a strong, masculine name. And I'm so glad that we did.

As parents, we just want to give our babies the best possible foundation for having a happy childhood. And choosing a good, suitable name is the perfect place to start.

Would you give your baby boy a traditional girl name?


Image via janineomg/Flickr

baby names, boy or girl


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Stacey. Stacey.

No. And thank goodness, a mother with common sense who actually took their child's feelings into account when choosing a name. I was starting to worry there lol.

ashjo85 ashjo85

My sister in law named her daughter Charly. Which I thought was totally cute, even though it took some getting used to. Charly could be short for Charlene or something (although it isn't in this case). It really depends on the name. Ashley and Lindsay used to be very masculine boys names.

nonmember avatar Gretta

I think Charlie is a boys name.

nonmember avatar lily

Be thankful you were not born in Mexico or Spain, or any other latinamerica contry!! In past decades, the tradition was to name your child with the name of the saint celebrated on their birthday, so many folks ended upnot just with gender contrary names, but with strange and painful names, hehe. Lucky my parents were not into that, eventhought they were religious (catholic). We were given nice biblical based names hehe!!

Melis... Melissa042807

There is a time and place to be whimsical and creative. Bestowing a name upon a child is not, in my opinion, one of those times. This is the name they're going to have for life. It's serious business.

the4m... the4mutts

I picked the name Brandon Renee for my youngest child. The minute I knew I was pregnant. That was going to be his/her name. Its my SOs first name, and my middle name.

If its a boy, he goes by brandon. And girl, by renee.

It turned out, that my baby was a HE, and his name is Brandon Renee Alexander *and his last name* he goes by Brandon Renee. He likes both names.

As long as the kid is happy, and taught to be proud of themselves no matter what, then I think its fine. If bullying happens, then as parents, we step in and talk to school officials, other parents, whoever is nessecary.

Making fun of someones name is stupid anyway.

Sucro... SucroseMonkey

There was a woman on the news the other night named "Joel."  I just couldn't see it fitting a girl since I knew two male "joels" growing up.  The only thing I can think of is maybe they were going for Jo-ell in the pronunciation like changing Noel to Noell.

Stacey. Stacey.

Joelle is a common name for a girl in France.

nonmember avatar Q

Actually, Ashley and Lindsay were both common Victorian first names for MALES, and girls have done okay with them. lighten up, nobody's doing Shirley or Matt...

DebaLa DebaLa

That's what middle names are for !

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