I Think I'm the Last Baby Named 'Mary' Since the 1970s

Rant 16

M necklaceAs much as I'd like to think otherwise, I know all too well that I'm not one of the cool kids these days. And it's not because I'm a 35-year-old mom who passed "cool" a long time ago -- it's because my name happens to be Mary, and the name Mary is just so 1977.

Don't believe me? Well, there's actually an entire article devoted to the decline in parents naming their baby girls Mary -- and it's pretty impressive, to say the least.

Since 1961, the number of people choosing Mary as a baby name has fallen by 94 percent. (Ninety-four percent, people!)

So, out of pure curiosity over why my own parents were so gung-ho about my name versus parents today, I went straight to the source and asked my mom why exactly they decided to go with that moniker for little old me.

And guess what folks? The Bible had nothing to do with it. Zip. Zero. Nada.

As it turns out, my parents were all about tradition and honoring both of their families, which is why I was given the first name Mary after my great-grandmother on my dad's side, and the middle name, Julia, after my great-grandmother on my mom's side. And in addition to wanting to pass on a family name to their first and only daughter, my parents chose my two great-grandmothers because they were strong women that they both admired.

And while I'm only one person in a sea of millions of Marys over the years, something tells me that the main reason parents today don't go the "Mary" route is because tradition isn't as important to them as it was to earlier generations. Forget the ancestors, it's all about choosing something one-of-a-kind nowadays. (Gah.)

People want to give their kid a name that no other kid has because they want the name to be cool, unique, special, or all of the above. And while thinking outside the box is definitely not a bad thing, it does seem a little bit sad that there are so many good "older" names that aren't being recycled as often anymore.

But I've got a plan to bring 'em back -- and it all starts with Kate Middleton's baby. She and Prince William are pretty traditional, so odds are good that they'll give their son or daughter a traditional English name. And they'll most likely call their child something that honors the royal family and their country in some way, so odds are good they'll wind up with a Victoria, an Elizabeth, or a William or Charles.

Wait a minute -- maybe they should go back a little further and pay homage to Queen Mary of England if they are blessed with a daughter.

Yeah, that would bring my name right back up to cool status for sure.

Are you planning on giving your baby a unique or more traditional name?


Image via Dazzled Beader Designs/Flickr

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purpl... purpleflower514

We like lesser used but still "normal" names.

EmmaF... EmmaFromEire

Come over here to Ireland, you can't move for Marys!

nonmember avatar Myturn

My baby girl's middle name is Mary because both my husband and I had grandmothers named Mary. We thought it would be a nice way to honour them.

mbnic... mbnich0269

I'm a Mary, born in 1980. But yeah, other than my mother I can't say I know any other Mary's.

Charles Cimino

I'm a Mary and I was born in 1987, I have only found old ladies with my name unless you count the girl in second grade who went to my school for a year and then moved. I can relate to having an old name but I'm glad my parent didn't name me Edna like they did my sister.

Charles Cimino

HA! I thought I was on mine but I'm on my husbands Facebook still LOL Sorry guys!

fleur... fleurdelys3110

I know two Mary's born in the early 1990's.

gridi... gridironsmom

My cousin, who is about fourteen, is named Mary. In the same vein, my daughter's name is Moira, which is a version of Mary.

Alleah Marie Poirier

i take exception to that whole "tradition isn't important anymore" thing.  My daughter's middle name is Marilyn (a derivation of Mary), and she's named after my mother who passed 7 years ago.  My mother in turn shared her middle name (Irene)with her grandmother, and great grandmother, and she passed the name (and the heirloom dishes that go with it) to my sister.  After my sister passes, my neice inherits the name and the dishes.  So, don't go dissing tradition just yet, yo!

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