Many people want unique names for their babies. They believe unique names will help their children stand out. And they’re right–unique names do indeed attract attention. But is it the kind of attention parents should want for their kids?
Let’s try an analogy. A unique name is a pair of red stilettos. A common name is a pair of brown loafers. The stilettos are conspicuous and memorable; the loafers are plain and forgettable.
The big drawback to red stilettos? (Besides knee pain, back pain, sprained ankles, hammer toes, corns and calluses?) They’re a distraction.
The big benefit to brown loafers? They aren’t distracting at all. They make it easy for the wearer attract attention to herself, which is the way things ought to be. A person shouldn’t have to compete with her name (or her shoes!) for attention.
People named Marijuana, Renesmee, Bandit and Zealand-New are forced to walk around in red stilettos their entire lives. People named Isabella, Olivia, Chloe and Sophie, on the other hand, get to wear comfy loafers.
(Holds true for boy names as well–I just thought it would be strange to throw a bunch of boy names into a post about red stilettos.)