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Friday, April 29, 2011

Baby Boy Weens

M. writes:
I am probably the most excited of your readers to be writing! You see, I have been reading your site for YEARS now... before I ever even considered I would be in this position!
This lil guy (a boy, due beginning of Aug) is a blessing but a little bit of a surprise:) I have been collecting names for years, and have a HUGE list... but no name seems to be fitting him! I like quite unique names, but not made up sounding (I have a common name and was always one of 3 or 4 in my class). The baby's dad and I are not together, but he is part of the naming process. I thought I found the perfect name, and he completely vetoed it (Huxley)! GAH!
As of right now, my list is something like this:

Huxley (number one, but dad hates it),






River (not sure about this one)

Kesler (except from friend/family polls they all assume I am
naming him after the hockey player!)

I LOVE the name Finlay nn Finn but it is just becoming far too popular and unisex (both situations I strongly wish to avoid)!!! Same goes for Sawyer, Everett

Dad has suggested: Jetson (reminds me of the show which I hate)

Ari (entourage... Ari Gold - no good)

For middle names, I was thinking of using a family name, Robert. I also considered using Crosby, a family name on the dad's side or Fyffe. Baby will have my last name (Weens) so trying to avoid names like Meyer, Oscar, Halo (haha if you add those with my last name you will see why!)

It appears that I like X, V, etc names (also Qs)...

I can't sleep because of this naming problem and would LOVE to have a few fantastic top choice names before delivery:)

Thanks for all of your help

Thanks again

Unlike many people who write saying they're looking for unique names, some of the names on your list may actually BE unique: they don't appear on the 2009 U.S. naming records at all. But if you are trying to avoid names that seem made-up, I would remove Axyn, Axtyn, Salix, Sylix, and Kaivor.

But---ARE you trying to avoid made-up names? It looks like that's what you LIKE. Just as I'd tell a parent who was trying to avoid Top Ten names even though her favorite names were Isabella, Olivia, and Chloe, I think you should go with what your tastes ARE, and not what you feel your tastes SHOULD BE. Though I'd caution that it's a good idea to keep in mind that we give names to someone else, and that the Someone Else is the one who has to live with the name, not us: just as you had a less than favorable experience with your parents' taste for a common name, your son might prefer to come back a little bit from the opposite end of the spectrum. Middle ground can be a pleasant place for finding names: maybe the occasional fluke of a repeat in a classroom, but not spending his whole life explaining his name, either.

I would also caution that it's common for parents considering a unisex name for a girl to further feminize the name by changing a vowel to a Y. So often is this done, names with multiple potential spellings where the Y spelling is chosen can look automatically feminine. If you choose Axtyn, for example, I suggest spelling it Axton. Not only does this reduce the made-up look, it masculinizes a name many people will be unfamiliar with.

Perhaps you should reconsider Finlay, if you love it and the only problem with it is that it's too popular. It wasn't even in the Top 1000 for boys in 2009 (source: Social Security Administration), and the spelling Finley is only #722. The two spellings combined would be about #657, which would be about .0177%, or 1 baby boy named Finlay/Finley per 5,650 baby boys. That's very, very uncommon. I wonder if it seems more common because of all the similar names: Finn alone, Finnegan, Griffin, Finian, Phineas, etc.? But I do think it's worth re-thinking it: IS it way too popular for you to use? If so, I'm not sure any of the names I suggest will be suitable. [Note: I wrote this paragraph while working with an earlier draft of the question, which didn't yet include the part about unisex being a problem. That additional problem with the name would normally cause me to delete the paragraph as no longer relevant, but...I did so much MATH! So I'm leaving it in because I think actual/perceived popularity is always an interesting topic, and also because I want to leave in the part about my own suggestions likely being too popular to use---but I'd no longer suggest M. reconsider it: it looks like it may very well go unisex.]

My first suggestion is Felix. It's not a bit made-up sounding, nor is it common. It has the X you're hoping for. I like it especially well with Robert: Felix Robert Weens.

If Everett is too common for you at #320, would you like Everest, which is not in the Top 1000?

Would you consider Crosby as a first name? It's not in the Top 1000, either.

A couple in our birthing class named their son Xzathian (ex-ZAYTH-ee-an). Xathian (which I'd think could be ex-ZAY-thee-an or ZAY-thee-an, as with Xavier) would work, too.

More possibilities:


Name update! M. writes:
Hello!!! Thank you all so very very much for your input and suggestions! I was SO excited and happy when I saw my post and loved all of the thought and advice. I just had the most amazing 9 hour labour that resulted in the (totally unbiased) most beautiful baby:) So so in love! I had him Aug 7th, 3 days before his due date (and he is my first!!!). Anyways! I had hummed and hawed over my list of names for so long... putting up polls on facebook, asking everyone and their dog about my names, and nothing seemed to fit. Then out of no where, about 2 weeks before I had him, I found the PERFECT name. It seemed to suit him and his little personality. I was afraid because some 'internet tabloids' labeled it as 2011 "hottest" baby boy name... and if you recall, i REALLY like unique names. I got past that though, since really, what does HOTTEST mean?! And I named him Asher August Weens. It is soft, yet boyish and proper at the same time. It means Happiness/Blessed in Hebrew and is just perfect:) Thank you all:D:D (all of my good pictures are on my phone, not my camera... but this shall suffice)


Abby@AppMtn said...

Congrats on your little boy!

I had two thoughts: first, have you considered Dax? It has some history, is very uncommon, and yet isn't completely unfamiliar. He'd fit right in with Jax and Max, but he'd still stand out.

Second, would Jett work? Again, there's some history. He's more common than Dax, but not so popular that it would be a repeat of your situation growing up.

Barb @ getupandplay said...

Another vote for Crosby as a first name! It's unique but not too unfamiliar. If you want to spice it up a little, you could spell it Crozby.

kanah said...

I agree with Swistle that a lot of the names on your list are made up. With that said, I definitely do love that you want a unique name. I secon Dax and Jett but also suggest: Sadler, Bauer, Ronan, Ladd, Fowler, Coulter, Joaquin, Morrow, Orison, Whitson, Knox, and Macon. Best of luck!

susan s said...

I would like to suggest Pfeiffer.

kimma said...

Some of the names on your list brought to mind rare, but not unheard of alternatives...

Atlin made me think of both Aslan and Atlas.

Salix - Saxon

Kaius - Cassius

A few of the names also reminded me of some novels I've read set in ancient Greece. Perhaps research some historical names from that era.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry I don't have any good suggestions for names, but I do think that Swistle's suggestions are good, especially spelling the name Axton instead of Axtyn.

I just wanted to point out that Salix is the name of a pharmaceutical company that manufactures medication for digestive diseases. I would avoid that one!

British American said...

I once met two brothers named Zephyr and Draven. Maybe those would be something that you'd like?

Meg said...

Straight away as soon as I read your post I thought
Purely because it means "alas a son" " see, a son" and variations of the same meaning, which i thought as perfectly fitting since you are finally getting along awaited baby (BIG CONGRATULATIONS) and he just happens to be a boy :)
sorry might not be much help!

Anonymous said...

I love all the suggestions by swistle. The more I think about it, the more I think the "made-up" names might not be the best choice.
My favs are Huxley, Everett, Ryker, Kelton, Xantian, Knox, Dax, Cato,
Do you like Roan? Sullivan?
I do love Felix, its adorable!
Good luck!!!!

Anonymous said...

i know an adorable little boy named dexen. i don't really have any other suggestions, but thoroughly enjoy reading the posts and comments. good luck! :)

StephLove said...

How about Xavier? It sounds like Kaivor, but is an established name and has an X to boot.

I also like Van or Quincy for you. And Felix was a great suggestion.

StephLove said...

Or how about Dexter?

Anonymous said...

100x what swistle says! The y spelling makes it sound feminine. I like Dax best of all the suggestions

Kas said...

I was going to suggest Xavier but alot of poeple already have! its a little differant not to common but still heard of!! its a great name!

I also came across the named Xander (pronunced Zander) which i love and havent heard of it before untill recently so im guessing its not common! I love the name Finley (nn finn) also love Flynn!

all the best x

Nokilissa said...

Completely agree with everything Swistle said. Careful on the extreme made-up nature of many of your names. Your future son will be forever correcting spelling and pronunciation and fielding odd looks. And also the suggestion you go with Jett. You could "honor" or include the the baby's father's input and opinion with a full name of Jetson, then call him Jett.

Chantelle said...

Love Felix Robert Weens!
Lennox Robert Weens is also a great contender. Both have your x and sound like very strong names, especially when paired with your last name.

Anonymous said...

I looked at the Social Security Administrations website and pulled the names that were ranked from 900-1000 in popularity. I then pulled out ones I thought you might like. I agree with Swistle that a Y makes a name look a bit feminine, but some of these names can easily be changed to include a Y if you consider it a must.

905 Casen
907 Brogan
908 Cortez
912 Kyson
917 Jarrett
926 Jayvion
928 Trystan (Ah, the love story with Isolde! It is definately masculine, but still has the Y.)
934 Westin
939 Landin (Perahps this name is too close to #36 Landon. I like it, though.)
949 Hayes (Distinctly masculine, even with a Y.)
951 Lennon (nn Lenny give you a Y.)
953 Garrison
968 Anton (Oh, Russian literature reference!)
973 Kalel
977 Blaise (I prefer #637 Blaine. You could change this to Blayne to get a Y.)
980 Denzel
981 Odin
982 Leonidas
986 Zavion
990 Zaid

Of these, my favorites are:

Trysten Robert Weens
Lennon Crosby Weens
Garrison Finlay Weens

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you'd like some Scandinavian names:




K said...

I know a baby named Caius. His parents named him after an early (Christian) church father. The name sounds very Latin/Roman and dignified to me. I actually like your spelling, Kaius, better. Kai is a great nickname.

My name tastes are different than yours, but I say embrace your preferences! It seems like you and baby's father have similar name tastes, even if you haven't come to agreement yet. What sounds like a "made-up" name to someone doesn't sound made up to the next person. From your list, I like Kaius and Axtyn (although I personally would spell it Axton for reasons Swistle mentioned). I like Atlin/Atlon, but I also think that could make a great future baby girl's name if spelled Atlyn. Atlas is a good alternative, as previously mentioned.

I also like Swistle's suggestion of Paxton (pax = peace)and a reader's suggestion of Saxon. Do you have German heritage? If so, Saxon could be a great choice!

I really hope you give us a name update when baby boy makes his appearance!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thank you Swistle SOOOO much for posting my story... and thank you all amazing readers:) your suggestions are welcome with open, trembling arms and have never said so many baby names outloud so many times!!! Keep them coming and thank you for the dedication and support! I know I seem picky or strange, but I can't help my taste in names :(

Megz said...

Baxter is a great suggestion, contains an X, is a legitimate surname and would make a good first name.

From your list I love Kaius the most.

A couple of other ideas (don't think they've been suggested already)


I wonder if Jaxson would be a good compromise since the dad likes Jetson and you like X's. May be a made up spelling but also becoming more common.

Anonymous said...

On this very historic day, oddly enough, I thought about your post. Would you consider the name


Think about that for a moment. For the last 100 years, this name has not been ranked in the top 1000. Yet, with the Abbott and Costello reference, it seems familiar. Given the recent operation in Abbottabad, it could be an interesting choice.

Good luck!

Rae said...

Familiar but not common suggestions...







Abbe said...

I know a little boy named Drextan although the name sounds like a cold medicine to me.

How about Haddix? I've only heard it as a surname, but I think it feels usable.

K said...

This is my favourite post and comments for quite some time. I am loving all of the unique, strong, masculine names!

Kimma had recommended Saxon before my first comment, and I seconded it. Not sure if Anonymous was questioning the German association or my endorsement of the name, but the Saxons were an old Germanic tribe (circa first millenium AD)originating in Germany and inhabiting other surrounding European countries. They also invaded England, resulting in the Anglo-Saxon people group, who gave us the English language.

Anonymous said...

K :
:) I do indeed have German heritage... in part at least :) I am glad you like my post... I am afraid people think I am trying too hard to be unique... but I truly, honestly, DO just like DIFFERENT names!


Patricia said...

Your little boy is indeed beautiful and has a fine name. Asher August -- love it! Congratulations!

Leslie said...

Aw, what a wonderful final name choice (Asher August)! Congratulations!!!

Tamara said...

oh, I love Asher August too. Great choice, congratulations!

I only first read you initial post earlier this week, and so I'm excited to see you've already updated.
I wanted to say (for future pregnancies) that I think Salix is lovely, and not at all made up as it is the botanical name for Willow and fits with Rosa and Viola and others i'm sure, someone suggested Euphorbia (another botanical name)to me when i was pregnant.