A reader who is interested in passing her name on to her daughter recently sent me an e-mail. Here’s part of it:
Most of the time people name one of their boys after the father, but I have never heard of the daughter’s first named being the same as the mothers. Have you ever heard of anyone doing that?
Yes–I know several women who were named after their mothers, in fact.
Passing a name down from mother-to-daughter may not be as common as passing a name from father-to-son, but it definitely happens. It’s even traditional in some cultures. (One of the branches of my family tree includes a long string of women named Catherine, for instance.)
When I originally responded to this question (via e-mail), the only advice I offered was to think of a nickname for either mother or daughter, to keep things straight on a day-to-day basis.
I recently thought of another suggestion, though. Two people who share the same first name, last name and home address should probably have distinct middle names (and middle initials) to help prevent mix-ups when it comes to credit cards, bank accounts, and related things.
Would you suggest anything else?