August 28, 2017

Naming Conundrum

As much as I had my heart set on having a third girl, there is one aspect I’ve been struggling with – coming up with a name.

We knew what Nicole’s name was going to be before we even started trying for a baby. ‘Nicole’ was both of our favorite girls’ names. We briefly considered the name ‘Natalie’, but preferred the nickname ‘Nicki’ to ‘Nattie.’ We reasoned we’d probably use the nickname more often than the actual name and settled on Nicole.

Domingo and I took longer to decide Alexis’ name. I love the nick name ‘Alex’, but ‘Alexander’ was our top boy choice. There was some thought we might end up with three kids, and neither of us liked the idea of two ‘Alex’s so we would be forced to come up with a new potential boys name. We debated between naming Ziggy Alexis or Allison until well in the third trimester. The deciding factor again came down to likely nicknames.

Here we are again, trying to decide on a name for our third and I’m drawing a complete blank.

As a math geek and data miner, breaking patterns can be almost painful for me. I like order.

I like that both Nicole and Alexis have gender neutral nicknames. I’d like to think that as a society we’d move past gender bias by the time the girls’ are starting their careers, but I have to be realistic. Research shows a resume with a male’s name gets a stronger look than one with a female’s name. By using a gender neutral nickname they could have a better chance of being called back for an interview.

What names have a gender neutral nick name? Samantha? Not my style. Danielle? Closer, but still a pass. I like Christina, but it doesn’t go with our last name.

Less importantly, both Alexis and Nicole have six characters in their names. (I know the number of characters is a ridiculous criteria when it comes to naming a child, but if you’re not allowed to be a little ridiculous went pregnant, when are you?) They’re also fairly common names – top 182 for Nicole, 144 for Alexis in their respective years. Both are common enough the girls’ won’t have to worry about any of the pitfalls for rare names such as others constantly misspelling their names, while still being the only child with that the name in each of their classes.

All I need to find is a six character semi-popular name with a gender neutral nick name that I like. And it can’t start with an ‘N’ or an ‘A.’ Those letters are already taken.

Shouldn’t be too hard, right?

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