Baby name dilemma: Naming a baby when the last name is a word

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock 

Those who have parts of speech for surnames - words that are nouns, adjectives, verbs and the like - live in a very special baby name universe. There are literally hundreds of names they really shouldn't use.

The shared pain reverberated around a Reddit thread recently, where people with last names such as Love, Walker, and Snow commiserated with each other about their limited baby name choices.

Reddit member u/whimsicalley started the thread titled, 'Anyone have a last name that is also an English word, and have trouble coming up with names?' then confessed that even with the last name Snow, they were inexplicably "drawn to first names that are also words in English." Names like Lily, Laurel, and Rowan.

"Although I like these first names on their own, two words that mean something weirds me out. My favourite boy name is "Jack" which worries me for my nonexistent child's future with "Jack Frost/Jack Snow/Jon Snow" comparisons! Does anyone else have this problem? Or any suggestions for names based on this?"

It's a fair point and others were keen to weigh in with their own baby name tales of woe.

"Yes! Almost all nature names are eliminated for us after I married my husband with a colour last name. It's very frustrating because I have dreamed of a daughter named Luna or Lily since I was a young girl," said one commenter.

Another agreed that colour names are a pain.

"My partner's last name is a colour, which combined with some first names turns the whole name into an adjective. Think: Lily White, Amber Brown."

And imagine the pain of eliminating all nature names from your girl list. Horrific.


"My husbands last name is such that I have had to eliminate all floral and nature names from my repertoire (think Rose Garden). It bums me out."

Also, "Our last name is Cannon and I've always loved the name Iris but doesn't Iris Cannon sound vaguely like something they'd use during Lasik surgery?"

Someone with the last name of Walker has been through this exact dilemma.

"I'm in a bit of a similar predicament. My SO's surname is Walker, and when we have kids, they'll be taking his surname. I also really like some word names too. But Violet Walker sounds like someone who walks violently. Daisy Walker sounds like someone walking daisies. Sky Walker is out because of Star Wars (and my SO is a big Star Wars fan... but I have to put my foot down). Chase Walker sounds like a contradiction."

All that said, it might just be a case of desiring a name that much more, simply because they can't have it.

There are lots of names that would go with Snow - Jacob, Oliver, Henry, Olivia, Charlotte and Hannah are all popular names in keeping with the original poster's style and the last name.