If you’ve read the about section on my blog you are aware that I am a bit sensitive to the fact that I share my first name with a billion other women (possibly a few men too, you never know). Just the other day someone mentioned to me how many Jennifers they know. Yeah, popular name, especially in the 1970s and 1980s–I get it.
I just didn’t realize how popular until I looked at this list from the Social Security Administration (not sure why they are spending time on stuff like this, but here goes):
Popular names for births in 1910-2009
Rank Name Number
1 Mary 3,716,510
2 Patricia 1,566,458
3 Jennifer 1,452,299
4 Elizabeth 1,450,852
5 Linda 1,445,876
When selecting monikers for our kids, my husband and I kept this potential problem in mind. We went out of our way to pick names, while not as unique as say, Apple, not as common as Jennifer. That’s what we thought at the time anyway. Five years after the birth of our daughter, her name caught fire. Racing up the most popular list, to the number two spot–for three consecutive years. Needless to say, my little progeny did not like this. In the fifth grade, she dropped the last letter of her name in an effort to make it a bit more distinctive.
Son has faired a bit better. His name, while wildly popular in Scotland, has not taken off in the U.S. And believe it or not, he takes pride in this fact. He has said that he loves his name and is glad that only a handful of boys from his school, where the age range is 2-18, share it with him.
Having written all of this, and meant it, I have to add that I feel like a Jennifer. Whatever that means. I like my name. And, if given the choice, I wouldn’t change it.
How about you? Do you like your first name? How did you, or will you, select names for your kids?
The same person who mentioned knowing a bunch of Jennifers told me about this song. There are many tunes that contain the name Jennifer, but this one in particular sums up my experience perfectly. Enjoy!