Choosing an original baby name has become a priority for many, but one writer is urging parents to think very carefully before choosing a “unique” name.
Writing an article for POPSUGAR, Alessia Santoro says she can count on two hands the number of times someone has pronounced her name right - first go.
“Whenever someone does get it right, my jaw drops, because these moments are few and very far between — I often consider hugging the person for making me feel so normal. But the other 99 percent of the time, people get my name wrong,” Alessia writes.
Why you should avoid a unique baby name
While it may not seem like a big deal, Alessia explains that her name and her identity go “hand in hand.”
“I know what you're thinking . . . what's the big deal, right? The big deal is that your name goes hand in hand with your identity, and when it is consistently messed up, it makes you feel less and less validated as a person.”
Growing up, Alessia said she developed social anxiety about her moniker. From the first day of school, when she had to correct her teacher in front of the whole class, to putting up with being called “Alicia” by her soccer coach because she gave up correcting him.
"All of these incidents gave me social anxiety, made me feel like my feelings didn't matter, and put dampers on some of the most important moments of my life,” said Alessia.
After all, why is it so difficult to call someone by their real name?
"Being called by your actual name is the smallest courtesy that a person shouldn't have to ask for," she added.
What to consider when choosing a unique baby name
That said, Alessia thinks it’s a better idea to reconsider the unique name altogether.
"When you're considering a unique name for your baby, think ahead. Is the name spelt phonetically and easy to read? Can people understand it after hearing you say it once? If you speak it out loud, would most people know how to write it out without asking you how?
“But you've been warned.
“Signed, Alessia (which, for the love of god, is pronounced uh-LESS-ee-uh)”
This article first published on Practical Parenting.