Names to Avoid Giving Your Child

Updated on December 30, 2017

Many articles and books provide plenty of good names to give your precious honey-bun-in-the-stove, but very few seem to touch on which are good names to avoid, aside from those with the obvious "duh" factor like Elberta, Henrietta, Fanny, Clarence, and Eugene.

Not that it's all relative to a degree. Take it from someone who took it upon herself to name her little boy Panther and has received feedback anywhere from "Tight name," to "Poor kid," and, my personal favorite, "In my generation, back in the sixties, this was completely normal." (?)

So what is considered someone's paradise might be another's tragedy, etc., and so forth, blahblahblooey..but face it, there are some names that most parents in their right minds would never give their children. As we already know, being a kid these days is already difficult enough without carrying the lifelong burden of an undesirable handle, one that some statistics indicate may determine how long your child may live, how often or how much he or she will live up to said name, will be remembered by it, will succeed in life because of it, and so on...remember that boy you grew up with whose parents for some reason gave him a name like Vivian or Meredith or Beverly Leigh? You could swear you never saw him without a black eye, right? Point taken?

No? (Groan). Okay, be that way. So, let's give the flip side of torturing our little Pooh Bears on the way a fair chance.

After my having listened to the old school hit A Boy Named Sue by Johnny Cash, (see video of Johnny performing live below), I've decided to keep an open mind. The point of this lively, light-hearted tune from what I understood of it is that some parents think that in deliberately giving their kids horrible names, they are ultimately doing them a favor. This is why I urge those who have been branded with embarrassing names to listen to this song's lyrics for much needed encouragement.

On the other hand, if you want your new jewel to grow up with the same grit as Mr. Cash's hero, and, possibly, even to adore you all the more, (or to eventually cream you as well, take your pick), the following names are highly recommended. (As a side note, my apologies to those who actually like the following suggestions from my personal list of no-no's, or actually have them as their own given names, as no offense is intended):

Girl Names to Avoid

Agnes

Alfreda

Aphrodite

Apple

Bernice

Bertha

Bindy

Blanche

Bronwyn

Brunhilda

Charlene

Chastity

Clara

Clementine

Coraline

Dolores

Dora

Dorcas

Doris

Dot

Edith

Eleanor

Elphine

Ethel

Eugenia

Eulilia

Eve

Farita

Fatima

Fern

Fifi

Florence

Frances

Francesca

Freda

Free (excuse the connotations, but please, pretty please, don't give your princess this name, it will scar her permanently)

Gertrude

Gladys

Glenda

Gretel

Griselda

Godiva

Gwendolyn

Helga

Hera

Hermoine

Hilegarde

Hilda

Hilga

Horatia

Hortencia

Hortense

Imogene

Iphigenia

Irma

Jacima

Jacquelyn

Jadwiga

Jemima

Joanna

Joanne

Juniper

Keiko

Khaleesi

Lucretia

Lulu

Magali

Magdalene

Margot

Marla

Mathilda

Maude

Maureen

Mildred

Mimi

Minerva

Miranda

Nichelle

Nora

Norma

Olga

Olivia

Opal

Ophelia

Pamela

Pearl

Peaches

Penelope

Persephone

Petunia

Phoebe

Piper

Poppy

Primrose

Prudence

Pumpkin

Queenie

Ramona

Rowena

Samantha

Saskia

Shanaynay

Shermadine (yes, I really did know someone with this name)

Susussido

Tallulah

Temperance

Tinsley

Topanga

Theodora

Tressie

Trillian

Trudy

Umbrielle

Valerie

Velma

Veronica

Virginia

Wanda

Winifred

Whilma

Zelda

Boy Names to Avoid

Abner

Adam

Albert

Alvin

Archie

Archibald

Arnie

Arnold

August

Avarice

Avery

Barney

Basil

Beauford

Benjamin

Bernie

Bert

Boris

Carl

Carlton

Casey

Cecil

Charlton

Chester

Chonsey

Clancey

Clarence

Clark

Clayburn

Clifford

Colin

Corbin

Cornelius

Craig

Dalton

Delbert

Dennis

Dewberry

Dewey

Dexter

Dingleberry

Doug

Douglas

Duncan

Dwayne

Dwight

Earl

Edgar

Elbert

Elliot

Ellis

Elmer

Emmett

Ernie

Ernest

Faunterloy

Felix

Ferdinand

Francis

Franklin

Gavin

George

Gerald

Gibb

Gideon

Gordon

Gregward

Harold

Heath

Henry

Herbert

Herman

Hermes

Homer

Huey

Humphrey

Irwin

Isaiah

Jared

Jeremiah

Jerome

Jody

Jules

Julian

Julius

Kristoff

Lawrence

Leslie

Lester

Liam

Louis

Lucas

Marlin

Marshall

Maurice

Maxwell

Martin

Marvin

Melton

Melvin

Mervyn

Milo

Milton

Mitchell

Morris

Mortimer

Myron

Napoleon

Neil

Nicholas

Nigel

Nolan

Norbert

Norman

Oliver

Ollie

Orson

Orville

Oscar

Oswald

Peter

Pee-Wee

Phinneas

Poindexter

Prescott

Preston

Quentin

Quigley

Quincy

Ralph

Rodney

Roger

Rory

Rosen

Rupert

Schulyer

Sheldon

Sherman

Sherwin

Simon

Stuart

Thaddeus

Theodore

Theron

Tobias

Toby

Ulric

Uriah

Vernon

Waddell

Waldo

Wendell

Wilbert

Wilbur

Wilfred

Winslow

Winston

Xavier

Having sufficiently depressed you, I'd highly recommend Cool Names For Babies by Pamela Redmond Satran and Linda Rosenkrantz, (listed below), for much needed relief, a fantastic read that has become my baby-naming Bible. Hope I saved at least a few lives out there, congrats on your new addition, and happy naming.


Cool Names for Babies
Cool Names for Babies

My all-time go-to for the world's most memorable and amazing baby names.

 

Comments

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    • profile image

      Star 

      8 days ago

      But flora is a beautiful name

    • profile image

      Father of child 

      6 months ago

      The mother of my child refuses to name it

      Please help

    • profile image

      Free (not really) 

      11 months ago

      I'm pretty sure this girls name is free

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