Baby name needed: Boy name for Catherine & Luke’s brother

A reader named Rebecca has two children named Catherine (Cate) and Luke. Both of their names are family names. She says:

We are due with our third, a boy in November and I just can’t think of anything I like that doesn’t sound out of place with those two names.

She’d appreciate some name suggestions, and she’d also like some “recommendations on how to connect with a name.”

I thought that second request was really interesting. It seems to me that most parents who don’t like a name right away usually just need some time to adjust. But there isn’t a lot of time in this case, so here are two tricks that might work:

  • Use the name as if it’s already his name (in your head, so as not to confuse others). For instance, whenever you use the word “baby” in conversation, mentally replay the statement and replace “baby” with the name. See if you can force a perspective shift this way.
  • Look for meaningful associations. Sift through your personal history–favorite friends, teachers, neighbors, authors, artists, public figures–and keep and eye out for the name you’re considering. A positive personal association might help you see the name in a new light.

I can’t wait to see what others ideas people come up with.

Now for the suggestions. Rebecca mentioned that the names Graham, Douglas and William have been disqualified for various reasons, so those three are out. Catherine and Luke are classics, so that’s what I stuck with for the most part:

Adam
Adrian
Anthony
Benjamin
Calvin
Charles
Craig
David
Duncan
Finn
Gabriel
Grant
Gregory
Jeffrey
Joseph
Jude
Kenneth
Mark
Matthew
Nicholas
Noah
Patrick
Paul
Peter
Philip
Richard
Sebastian
Seth
Steven
Theodore
Thomas
Timothy
Vincent

I almost included Nathan, but Nate rhymes with Cate. That won’t work. We want a name, not a nursery rhyme. :)

Which of the above names do you like best for the brother of Cate and Luke? What other boy names would you suggest to Rebecca?

11 thoughts on “Baby name needed: Boy name for Catherine & Luke’s brother

  1. In terms of how to connect … listening to your loved ones use the name can help. We were (okay, I was) waffling on my 2nd’s name for a few days after she was born. My husband loved the one we went with and it put a little gleam in his eye and the way my 2-yo said it was just so adorable that I was persuaded.

  2. Okay, names I like best from your list:

    Adam
    Benjamin
    Nicholas
    Joseph
    Patrick
    Philip
    Thomas

    For this baby boy, I’d stay away from Matthew, Mark, or John (too Biblical with Luke), and since I like each kid to get their own initial, I’d steer clear of C or L names in general. Since Catherine goes by Cate, and Luke is one syllable, I actually prefer the sound of a two (or three) syllable name to go with them. So, my additional suggestions:

    Evan
    Edward
    Simon
    James
    Robert

    About falling in love with a name, I always like writing it out – first name, first and middle, first middle and last, first and last, etc. Write it a lot, write it with the other kids’ names, write it with your name. Doing that seems to help the name feel like it belongs in your family, I think.

  3. I second Kristin’s recommendation of Simon.

    Since Nancy almost suggested Nathan, perhaps Nathaniel? Then his nickname could be Nathan, and not Nate. But, of course, it’s your peers who pick your nickname, and he could always pick up Nate later on…

    Geoffrey. Jonathan. And, from Nancy’s list, I like Vincent!

  4. I really like the suggestions of Nicholas, Benjamin, Simon, Stephen, Adam, Phillip, Edward, and Geoffrey. I also like Samuel, Henry, Zachary, and David as classic but not plain or too popular.

  5. Well I’m a Catherine and I have 3 brothers

    Jamie David
    Samuel Mark
    Christopher John

    I like Christopher but maybe spelt Kristopher to give them their own initals. I also like Samuel and Vincent.

  6. I’m reading this 5 years later and curious what name Rebecca chose for the baby.
    My newest niece is named Catherine (no Luke in the family though) and one brother’s name is Elijah. That’s a nice way to have a Biblical name but not one of the 4 gospels (if that bugs you, personally, I think it would be awesome to be Matthew with a brother Luke).
    I also don’t see a big deal with rhyming nicknames. Rhyming given names ‘can’ be a downer, but not always. Cate and Nate would be fine to me.

  7. @Dellitt – I wish I could tell you. (This is the main reason I don’t do posts like these anymore, actually — too many people just never bothered to come back and tell us what name they chose.)

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