Picking a Name for an Asian Baby

Asian Baby III

Many Asians, when having babies after coming to the United States, begin a search to find the right name for the baby. Some prospective parents choose to give the baby an Asian name.  For many, picking an Asian name is easier because the Asian parents are often familiar with appropriate names and the meaning of these names.  Others, however, search for an appropriate western name in English.  This can be much more difficult because the meaning and popularity of these names is less clear.  The popularity of names for babies in the Western world changes over time and a great name 50 years ago may no longer be popular.

There are some names like James and Emma that have been around for centuries and are still popular in the western world. According to a recent article in AARP’s Home & Family online magazine (http://tinyurl.com/leglz7u) however, there are many names for babies that are quickly dying out.  The following is a list of 36 names that, according to AARP, are in danger of becoming extinct:  Angela, Bertram, Beverly, Carol, Cecil, Clarence, Clive, Cyril, Debra, Diane, Donna, Dean, Doris, Dennis, Derek, Duncan, Elaine, Ernest, Geoffrey, Horace, Joanne, Leonard, Maureen, Malcolm, Nigel, Neville, Paula, Roy, Sally, Sandra, Sharon, Sheila, Tracey, Wendy, Yvonne, Wayne.

The AARP article reports that 50 years ago the most popular girls’ names were Lisa, Kimberly, Michelle, Mary and Susan, while the most popular boys’ names were Michael, David, James, John and Robert. Names that are now starting to rise in popularity, however, are quite different.  They include names such as Tahiti, Koa, Calista, Alizeh and Ines.  These new trends in western names make picking a name for the new bundle of joy particularly difficult for prospective Asian parents.

Photo by Sodanie Chea – http://tinyurl.com/kg4c3dr

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