Lunchtime Poll: What’s In a Name?

I think most people spent at least part of their childhood wishing they could change something about themselves. My best friend and I had opposite hair types (mine: corkscrew curls, hers: pin straight) and always wished we could switch.

But a common phenomenon seems to be that almost everyone spent some time thinking about having a different name. So, what was your dream name when you were younger? Mine was Amber. I’m not sure why, but I went through a phase where I wrote “Amber” on everything. I grew out of the phase, of course, but have kept a fondness for the name that I once wished was mine.

Anyone else?

18 thoughts on “Lunchtime Poll: What’s In a Name?”

  1. When I was little I hated my first name, which is ‘Nicolette’. I thought it sounded too weird and different. My middle name is ‘Shannon’ and I went through a phase where I tried to get people to call me that but it never caught on.My family calls me ‘Nikki’ and my close friends call me ‘Nic’ so I wear many hats, name wise.

    Also people meeting me for the first time tend to call me ‘Nicole’ which induces a rage that I cannot describe. It’s not that I hate the name ‘Nicole’ but it’s not my name. It took me many years to get used to my name and actually like it, so get it right!

     

  2. Ha. I never wanted a different name until I started my current job. There are so many of us working the night shift. It’s insane. A lot of coworkers have taken up calling me by my last name instead…or by my friend’s name since we always get confused for each other.  :)

  3. Every self-insert character in every short story I wrote in middle school was named Margaret (usually Maggie) or Margo.

    My own first name is incredibly, incredibly common, and I hated being one of a half dozen all the time. There are so many different nicknames you can give to a Margaret instead of just tacking her last initial onto the end.

  4. I never really liked my name, but didn’t like any other name enough that I wanted to change. I still think my name is boring, pretty common when I was born and then had a resurgence a few years ago. It feels plain and unexciting. But when everyone else was going through the name wishing phase, I never came across a name I liked more.

  5. I’ve always loved my full name. It’s very pretty and has a nice alliteration that just rolls off the tongue when projected through the neighborhood. On the other hand, I hate when people try to shorten my first name. It becomes a brutish manly name, and I hate it, which is silly because my family calls me by a guy’s name as a familial nickname, and I love it.  /shrugs

  6. I wasn’t a big fan of my name, it’s rather ancient, simple bordering on dull and fairly common. I would have liked something a bit more special. In hindsight though, the majority of popular girl names in my generation seem badly dated now, while mine remains as moderately popular as it’s always been, so at least people aren’t able to pin me to a distinct age group based on it.

  7. My ‘old’ name was really long and the sort of thing that Queens of England have. When I was 5-6, I met a Famous Movie Star (who was married to a local-ish politician) with the same first name and some reporters interviewed us as a cutesy sort of public interest story. She typically went by a short version of our name, so they asked if I ever went by that variation as well. ‘Of course not!’ I declared (or similar). It sounded a bit too… reptilian, and way too easy to see what direction the name-teasing would head.

    Around that time, I did want a slightly more… androgynous name. I liked Robin a lot. A couple of years later, after tiring of my name, I did shorten it (had to switch up a letter) and have used the short version ever since. I’ve had  a couple of nicknames too; mostly Raven throughout high school and college, and then a Czech word that essentially is a type of crow that means ‘small bird.’

     

  8. I am absolutely in love with my first name which is Caitlin but I hate my middle name. It’s too “boyish” and way too french compared to my first name. I always wanted to change it,partly because I don’t think it fist me and mostly because it was given to me in rememberance of my grandpa. I never understood why my mother chose to name me after a man!

  9. I have a weird-ass name – which I now love, but disliked as a child because I thought it sounded too ‘grown-up’ and there isn’t any good way to diminutise it without it hurting my ears. So I once tried to tell someone my name was “Lynn” but that lasted all of about half an hour before I realised I’m a bad liar. Then I just waited to grow into my name;)

  10. I never wanted a different name, but I went through a phase where I wanted a fancier spelling. My name is “Caitlin” and for a year or so in high school I wished it had been spelled “Katelyn” because I thought that was prettier. Then I learned to embrace my more traditional spelling and now I love it.

  11. Where did you think my screen name came from?

    I really liked my middle name, except I wanted something “fancy” so  Nicole became Nicolette. Then that devolved into Nico, which now my sister and even my little niece call me by sometimes. So my dream name became my nickname. :)

    When I was little, though, I thought it all was quite confusing and thought that your mother’s maiden name should be in there next to your middle name? IDK, plus Mora sounds cooler to me than Logsdon. Though now I use my mom’s remarried name as part of my name (Breakstone). I guess I kind of feel like part of your name, at least, should highlight what has made you you.

    ETA: Also, I have some cool auditory->tactile + Kinetic synesthesia, so I always felt like Savannah tasted too warm, round, smooth, and full for me. Like a humid day. I’m okay with it now I think- I’ve tempered it a bit- but I still get unsettled by the sensation of my name sometimes.

  12. I remember friends going through this, but it wasn’t something I went through. I’ve always been rather fond of my name. I do recall that names beginning with “H” were popular, in terms of what people would want to change their names to.

Leave a Reply