Monday, April 5, 2010
What's in a name?
I have to own up - my name isn't really Beverley. Well, it was once - for the first week or so of my life. However, according to my mother, her doctor didn't like the name. So what does a first time mum do when the doctor doesn't like the name she has chosen for her precious child? She changes it of course! I won't give my real name because what I write about is real. Although I'm sure I won't be writing anything embarrassing, my daughters think I'm weird enough for writing a blog - let alone in my real name!
This gives me cause to think about how readers think of me. Would your perception of me change because of my name? What if my name was Christine (it isn't), or Bridget or Jane (not those either)? What causes us to name our children the way we do? And how does our name shape who we are? Does it shape who we are? What do you think? I'd be interested in your comments.
My late husband was adamant that none of our children should have a vowel as their middle initial - he was sure that they would be mercilessly teased if their initials spelled out a word! My parents obviously didn't worry about it when they first named me - but their subsequent naming of me and my siblings shows that they took it into account - not necessarily deliberately.
I see family names as so important. I wonder why so many females of my era (born in the 50s) were so eager to rid ourselves of the name given to us by our parents. Now my married daughter has a dilemma (not as I see it) - she desperately wants to keep her father's name, but she also wants to take on her husband's name. He is not fussed either way. I've advised her (and I've been so good with advice over the years ...) to keep both - her name for anything official and his name for social occasions. So far that has been the outcome. I have no sons, and I would really like my daughters to carry on their father's name. Too bad about mine!!!!