Thursday, March 8, 2012

Reader Question: Amy vs Caitlin

I loved your blog! I'm still torn, I love the name Amy (a girl I adored in kindy), but we have chosen Caitlin, surname [sounds like furry], her middle name will be Claire or Grace. I'm just not settled with this choice yet. What to do? I feel like it's such a responsibility to name her correctly. I'm also worried about her needing to spell her name out. I do want a name that has a easy nickname and sounds good for a professional woman.

Would love to hear your thoughts!



Hi there!
First of all, it truly is a responsibility to bestow a name upon a child. It should be meaningful to you in some way, even if you just think it sounds pretty, and parents need to remember that this is a name their child will most likely carry for life.
My first concern is always popularity. I like to take into consideration the current popularity as well as past popularity. While both Amy and Caitlin rank outside the top 100, they have long been popular names. Caitlin currently stands at #340, and there are other variations in the top 100 and 1000 as well, such as Caitlyn, Kaitlin and Kaitlyn, all said the same but with different spellings, which is one of your concerns. I doubt anyone would initially spell Caitlin with a K, although that version ranks at #90, but those who are unfamiliar with Caitlin would probably assume it has the -lyn ending, and Caitlyn currently ranks at #300. Unfortunately, -lyn endings have become commonplace. Amy, on the other hand, ranks at #135, but would also make a cute nickname for a longer name such as Amarantha, Amethyst, Ambrosia, Amara, Amaryllis, Ambra, Ambretta or Amity. Amy alone does not have an easy nickname, although Caitlin can be shortened to Cait. An alternate suggestion for a name that sounds like Caitlin but is less popular would be Catalina. Caitlin is one of those Irish names that has become so mainstream that most hardly remember its Irish roots and begin to think of it as simply American, which is not necessarily a bad thing, as some Irish names will have a much harder time achieving this. I'm not sure if you want to honor a certain heritage, but Caia (kaya) and Caoimhe (keeva) come to mind if Caitlin is too popular for you.

As it is, Amy Grace sounds better than Caitlin Claire (a tongue-twister) or Caitlin Grace, and I think it also goes better with your surname. I think you should also take a few things into consideration before choosing for sure. Do you have any family members you want to honor? Do you know the meaning of each name and like that meaning? Get advice from a large group of people, like online message boards. Consider how well the name goes with your surname. Practice saying the full name out loud.

Good luck!

Does anyone have anything to add?

No comments:

Post a Comment