I have loved your name articles from day one, for both the hilarious redirections and sweet encouragements. But it was solely for entertainment purposes. Except now I'm surprise pregnant (Hi! was on the pill!) and my husband and I are grappling with names for our little one. Since fate toyed with us a bit, we've decided to leave the sex unknown and choose two names for boy/girl and name the kid accordingly once we meet them. On trend, we chose our boy options with ease and can't agree on anything for the girl. I have favorites (dual or multi-syllabic and kinda sweet): Willa (Cather is undoubtedly one of my favorite authors of all time), Matilda, Golda, Hazel and Ruby. The husband needs some encouragement that these names won't lead to playground harassment due to old fashionedness. But maybe I'm off base? Nameberry and Babywizard have sadly, not helped my choices or encouraged him to offer up any suggestions. Can you help us along?



Hi, K! You gotten over that surprise factor yet? Written a strongly-worded letter to the makers of said pill? Heh. It’s gonna be lots of fun and you’re on deck with your girls’ names and what I have to say might surprise you.

The names are lovely – Hazel always makes me especially happy – but they’re not unusual for babies today. In fact, most have been used for girls a little older than yours. The Matildas and Rubies are about six or eight now, while there are a whole bunch of Willas about to turn 1 year. 

So, don’t worry, husband! I love how often it bears repeating – especially to dudes who don’t have kids – that the playground structure has changed. First of all, it’s populated with Williams and Sebastians and Henrys and Alices, and second, nobody makes fun of each other’s name anymore. Having an unusual name is not something to be scorned. I …guess…if you showed up with a little four year old Jennifer, they could all be like “ewwww, that’s a MOM NAME” but I’m not trying it. If you do, let me know.

So if for whatever reason he talks you out of your names and you need a fresh batch (and I haven’t heard Golda ever, outside of Fiddler On The Roof, so I hope you win) how about Sylvia? Adeline? Mirabel? Anastasia, even? Oooh, or Althea? Or my continued love affair with Greta?

You’re right and he’s wrong, but there’s a whole world of names out there if you want to go even more towards names that haven’t seen the playground in a long, long time.

Let me know!