The Name Experiment -- Are Moms With Same-Name Kids Alike? Part 1

Cynthia Dermody

moms with same-name kids

Cafe Cynthia's Carolyn

I'm conducting an experiment among moms who picked the same names for their kids. We obviously think alike in some respect. Maybe we are alike in other ways as well.

This time, I'm one of the lab rats. With help from the CafeMom Baby Name Finder, I found tinymomma, another mom with a young daughter named Carolyn -- a very unpopular name. (Tomorrow I'll chat with other moms who also have sons named Aidan, one of the trendiest boy names going!

According to the Baby Name Finder, the name "Carolyn" peaked in popularity in the 1940s, and has been on a steady decline ever since. In fact, in 2007 it was ranked 616 on the list of girl names.

Here's my interview with tinymomma and myself ...

Why did you pick the name Carolyn?

Cafe Cynthia: I loved the name when it was attached to Carolyn Bessette Kennedy -- remember her, the wife of John Jr. -- who both died in a plane crash? I thought she was beautiful and stylish and that name soon came to embody all those qualities. I love that it's old-fashioned AND sophisticated. And after naming my son, I wanted a VERY unpopular name.

tinymomma: Carolyn is the name of one of my husband's favorite cruise liners. The history of the ship and look of it were strong and graceful. Cool, huh?

Did your daughter's heritage affect the choice of name?

Cafe Cynthia: My daughter is mostly Irish, with a little German and Swedish. We actually never researched the history of the name -- we picked it for the sound and flavor.

tinymomma: I'm German-Irish and my husband is Hungarian-German-Irish, but we  both have Native American and a few other random things. Carolyn is a German name and we both love it!

What were your runner up names?

Cafe Cynthia: Gillian, Niambh, Katherine. Her middle name is "Jean," after my mother.

tinymomma: Caitlyn (ended up being her twin sister's name), Millie, Theresa Rose (after me), Rochelle (now her middle name).

Do you like that Carolyn is a very unpopular name?

Cafe Cynthia: I'm THRILLED that it's not a trendy name and that she's the only one in her preschool or at birthday parties. We often have to correct people who mispronounce her name Caroline -- my daughter is very sensitive to this distinction and speaks right up!

tinymomma: I love that it's unpopular. I grew up with a few friends with the name, but it's not too common anymore.

I wonder if you and I have anything in common because we picked the same name for our child?

Cafe Cynthia: I like gardening, Irish dance, hiking, biking, chick lit, blue ticking stripes, cleaning my house, chocolate, back massages, boots, traditional, linen pants, The Office (BBC), pizza, ice hockey, rocky beaches, baking desserts, seafood, hydrangea bushes.

I don't like horror movies, anchovies, running, crowds, chicken wings, being late, gold, lots of makeup, loud music, bubble baths, tight jeans, red peppers, an unmade bed, sand in my shoes, musicals, red pens, shag carpets, plastic grocery bags.

tinymomma: I like the Army (my life revolves around my family and my job!), writing, gaming, music, doing PR for my best friend's band, anything Irish and German, dark chocolate, cooking, working out at the gym, pink -- the color and the Victoria Secret collection, theater, football, baseball, and college basketball.

I don't like stupid people, most horror films, anchovies, funerals, people making fun of me because I'm short, okra, and I'm superstitious, so all that stuff!

++You be the judge -- do we have anything in common besides our taste in names? Did you pick an unpopular name for your child? Check back tomorrow as the Name Experiment continues ...

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