How do you feel about people who name their children -- ALL their children -- after someone else? I have a cousin who has three kids and a fourth on the way. So far each of her kids has a name that already belongs to someone in the family: an aunt, a grandparent, or even one of the parents' names themselves (example: If the father were called "Paul," for instance, one of the girls' middle names might be "Paula").
I think it's lovely to name a baby after a relative, to honor that relative, to carry on a tradition, etc... but every child? I just don't know. I'm wondering what this mom is going to do when she "runs out" of family names -- and also, MEOW, why can't she think of anything original?
(I am rude. Forgive me. Perhaps you, yourself, have done this, and I don't mean to offend if you have.)
I had to give this some thought: I realized I don't actually know ANYONE who does all family names like that. I know a lot of people who do namesake names in the middle name position, which I think is charming.
And, after thinking it over, I think namesake names are charming in the first-name position, too. As with every "all the names the same" theme (such as starting with the same letter), the parents should think VERY CAREFULLY beforehand about whether they have enough naming material even if they end up having more children than they think they'll have. It's especially sensitive with family names, because if you use three family names and then you switch to non-family names, the remaining non-named-after family members may wonder what the heck is wrong with THEIR names.
Family names come with an automatic side of confusion, of course: if you name your son after your father, your mother is going to have to specify which John she's talking about every time she's chatting with her friends. This may be minor, depending on which family name you're using (your spouse's vs. your cousin's), but it's nice to have thought it out beforehand rather than being surprised by it.
An additional issue with family names is that most of the ones available to choose from will not be generationally timely. Parents are eager to use the names of the great-grandparents they've never even met, because that's where the Emmas and Violets and Maxes and Jacks are. The family members whose names have actual significance to the namer tend to have names like Ruth and Robert, Barbara and Jerry. (These things go in cycles, so all these baby Emmas and Jacks will be naming THEIR babies "after great-grandma Ruth.")
Something that doesn't bother me is the originality issue. Almost all names have been used and used and used, so that I think words like "original" or "unique" are useless in naming discussions. (People usually mean "unusual," anyway.) Naming the baby Madison is not more original than naming her after the namer's Aunt Joanne or after the baby's Aunt Kimberly.
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Like the idea of family names and did it or plan to do it: 60 votes, roughly 77%
Like the idea, but not for us: 8 votes, roughly 10%
Don't like the idea: 10 votes, roughly 13%]