Today we bring you a guest post.  An ENORMOUS thank you to Tyson for writing about her experiences with her name:

Oh where to begin??

I don’t recall much about my name as a younger child. My first major negative association with my name was when I moved schools in the 8th grade… 1st class… gym. I go in sit down and wait… it’s a BOYS gym class. The teacher made a big deal out of it, then I had to go to the office for them to redo my schedule. By lunch I was “the new girl that tired to get into the boys gym class”. Mortified doesn’t really begin to describe it, especially for the rather shy person that I was.

Also remember around that time that a friend of mine’s mom claimed she was just going to call me Marie since Tyson wasn’t a pretty name. I liked it, thought it was pretty, so didn’t mind or think otherwise about it. Looking back I realize how ironic (and rude) that was… my friend’s name was Chris and her mom’s name was Marty! People would ask if I was related to Mike Tyson or if my parents were fans, and it never really bothered me too much to just say “nope”! Tyson’s Chicken was far more agitating. My Grandma still cuts out the Tyson’s Chicken label every now and then and puts it in my scrapbook… never thought a little red oval could be so annoying.

College was the first time I really started to experience that problems that go along with having a boys name. I wish people wouldn’t fool themselves, it’s not unisex, it’s a boys name through and through. It means “son of David”… interestingly enough my mom heard that name as a preteen and always said she was going to name her first child Tyson whether it was a boy or girl. Then add in my middle name of Lane, and there was nothing left to tell my gender on paper!

I started getting letters from the government warning me that it’s a federal offensive to not enlist in the selective service, ie the draft. I threw away each letter because, well, I’m not a male so it didn’t apply to me. Towards the end of the school year I get a notice that a warrant for my arrest was being issued! Eek! After many many looooong phone calls later, I was “cleared”…. I was fearing I was going to have to go get a physical or something! Come to find out the University so politely “corrected” my paperwork for me and switched me to a male… which then the government has access too and had an 18 yr old male in college that had not enlisted. Just wonderful.

There were so many times during the huge lecture type classes that when going to retrieve my exam results I’d be asked to show proof of identification when not one other single person did. Not sure what they thought I was going to do with someone else’s results… but it was annoying. Once again, in front of a crowd of people staring at me, my name would be an issue. I’m not a center of attention, look-at-me type person… that’s when I first started really cursing my name.

However, on the other hand college was about the only time I truly liked my name every once in a blue moon. People thought it was “cool” or “neat” and they easily remembered it. There were times when I’d inwardly feel embarassed when a guy I was dating would hesitate to say my name to others or when on the phone with his parents he’d be sure that yes HER name is Tyson. There was also a guy named Tyson and we sort of ran in the same circles (our best friends dated each other). Then when all of our related friends were talking it’d be “Girl Tyson” and “Guy Tyson”… it really didn’t bother me that much at the time, but it really did him I think. It was just awkward.

The minute Mike Tyson bit off Holyfield’s ear, my eyes couldn’t roll any further into the back of my head… I knew I was in for it. I was kinda able to use it as an ice breaker or something to laugh at. “Watch out, I could bite your ear off!”. Or Tyson’s Chicken would run a big sale and all I’d hear for weeks would be “Tyson’s split chicken breast, buy one get one free”….niiiiice!

It wasn’t until I graduated and headed out into the real world that my name became officially annoying and negative for me. It took me a long time to even get called in for interviews. Finally after obtaining some interviews, people would actually admit that they almost didn’t call me because they thought I was a gay man (I was floored they’d actually tell me that!). I had a bachelors in Interior & Architectural Design with my name, I can see how they’d make that connection. I moved from the midwest to a big city in the south… unfortunately most companies were looking for pretty girls to put forth. I’ve never had to deal with discrimination, and just experiencing it in that small amount was pretty disgusting. Finally, I got a job (and yes it was with a place that did think I was a man and they totally weren’t planning on calling me at all) and from then on spent the majority of my time always having to repeat my name a dozen times, hear the Mike Tyson/Tyson’s Chicken remarks, then the questions on why I was named that. I yearned to just be able to say “Hi, I’m Rachel” and have that be it and get on with my job of designing their home!

In planning to get married, vendors thought we were two men trying to get hitched, the reverand thought he was going to have legal issues!. Got all them “straightened” out and I do have to say our wedding announcements of Tyson Lane getting married to Gregory did kind of look funny. Thought once I was married it would help to have the Mrs. Tyson…. but no, people then thought Tyson was my husband and I was very old fashioned. I couldn’t win. I was debating actually putting my picture on my resume, as tacky as that would of been!

Once I was pregnant, until the nurses got to know me I always had to deal with the utter look of confusion when the nurses would call me back and the entire waiting room staring at me. Since then I’ve joined moms groups, only to have the organizer want to meet me somewhere public first for fear that I was some man trying to get info on a bunch of women and their children. Everyone always apologizes, and I don’t hold it against them, it just gets old.

Most recently, I filled my birth control prescription only to have it not ready for me when I got there. They just cancelled it because it didn’t make sense that a man was getting birth control. Again, apologies, but time wasted on my part. I also had billing issues with my children’s doctors office. When I tried to call to show them their error (the bill was paid asap) I couldn’t because the office “corrected” the paperwork. They took the only females name on the paperwork, my mother in law as emergency contact, made her the mother and myself the grandfather. Lovely. I am curious what goes through peoples head that’s an awfully HUGE leap to make in “correcting” stuff. Again, apologies, but time wasted. Even when we had our patio expanded the owner of the business shows up asked if my husband was Greg or Tyson and then asked who I was. It’s so tempting to want to reply “The person that wants the construction done and writes the checks, so you better watch it!”… but I know it’s not his fault. Of course, more apologies!

I filled out our zoo membership while standing right there in front of the person who even had my drivers license. Then we receive our cards… Mr. Tyson! It’s gotten past the point of even being funny anymore, it’s just gotten so incredibly old. People I meet in person also continue to rename me…like correcting me like I’ve said my name wrong or something… Tatum, Taylor, Tybee, Tycie, Tylee, etc…

I always try to make a point to explain to people that while they might think a boys name on a girl is cute or is going to make her strong or stand out… that’s it’s how they’re raised, the experiences they have and their personality that does that. Not their name. While I was always a shy person, I was still very hard headed and independent. The only my name ever did for me was make me stand out in the wrong way or a way I wasn’t comfortable with. Now in my 30′s I find myself still having to explain that YES I am a female.

As far as naming my own children, so far no girls, just my boys Jake & Evan. I wouldn’t say my style would be super frilly, but still obiviously feminine like Leah, Lauren, Jena and Jocelyn. I do have a baby name book that I got as a teenager (you know when you and your friends would obsess about your future kids names) and I found that for girls I did have some boys names marked, eeek! But now, I’d definitely not go that route.

People have asked me why I haven’t changed my name. Honestly, as much as a loathe my name and always try to help steer others from the “boy name on girls” thing… it’s me, it’s my name. I really can’t change at this point! That doesn’t mean I still don’t cringe when having to say my name or scream out in my head when I get mistaken for a male or get ribbed about Mike Tyson.

49 Responses to “Why Boys' Names on Girls Are Not Always a Great Idea”

  1. K Says:

    Wow…this really has me reconsidering one my favorite names for a girl: Hudson. I first heard it when I nannied for a little girl with the name and I’ve loved it ever since.

  2. Blair Says:

    While my first name, Blair, can be used interchangeably, most people with the name are men. I too had to argue with the government with enlistment, frequently heard “send him in” when my name was called, and endured years of people calling me Brooke, in attempt to reconcile a girl with my name.

    Tyson is a “boy” name with many more possible associations so I guess the author had to go through much more heartache than I, but I was always proud to have a different name. And, truth to be told, I too have a boys name on my list if I have a girl…hopefully it will be less traumatic for her!

  3. photoquilty Says:

    You have validated every point I’ve ever tried to make with my girlfriends who were looking at some clearly masculine names for their kids! I’m Danielle, but go by Dani, and even that got me some odd looks in college. Fortunately, it’s just a nickname for me.

  4. Stefanie Says:

    While I appreciate that Tyson has had several problems with her name, this post smacks of privilege and “first world problems” to me. If you had that much trouble when you were younger, and hated your name that much, then perhaps you should have changed it when you turned 18; it wouldn’t have been “too late” then and even if you wanted to keep it for sentimental/ familial reasons you could have made it your middle name and taken on a similar, more feminine name that made you feel better. Instead, Tyson seems to have “suffered through” her name in order to be a martyr about it. I don’t have patience for this kind of essay, especially when it promotes subtle forms of homophobia, racism, and sexism. Everybody has issues when they’re growing up – and having the primary one be your name – means you’re probably one of the lucky ones.

  5. The Foxymoron Says:

    That is really interesting. Thank you for sharing with us Tyson!

  6. The Foxymoron Says:

    Wow Stefanie! This isn’t a “What’s your worst problem” wblog, it’s a baby name blog, so Tyson was telling us about her experience of having a particular name. Telling us that it was annoying and frustrating at times, doesn’t mean that she thinks it is some terrible problem that ranks up there with poverty and war! And telling us about others homophobic, racist or sexist behaviour doesn’t promote it!!
    You must really struggle with the whole concept of this blog – people interested in something as trivial as baby names! If it’s not your thing, you don’t have to be here, belittling others who find it conversation-worthy.

  7. Patricia Says:

    I follow — and sometimes participate in — a baby name blog where parents — usually moms — whose baby is due very soon ask for help choosing name. It’s not unusual for a couple to be wanting a boys name for a daughter. I always wonder how their daughter will like having a name perceived as male. I think Tyson’s — and Blair’s — experiences with having a name that almost always indicates a male should be taken into consideration by parents who are contemplating giving their daughter a name that others will perceive as belonging to a boy. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Elizabeth Says:

    I understand your point- though I don’t agree with it- but I’m curious to know what in the text ‘promotes subtle forms of homophobia, racism, and sexism’?

  9. Tyson Says:

    Actually I didn’t “suffer” when younger… I came to hate it more as an adult.

    I never said it was a given way to feel… it was just my feelings on it.


    That type of response is exactly why I was sort of afraid to say anything.

    Thanks for posting Elisabeth! It was fun to do! I’ve been sick all day and just now got to check it out!

  10. LP Says:

    Very interesting post! As someone who primarily goes by their first and middle initial, I get weird gender-confused comments all the time, though legally I am a Lisa, so I don’t have it nearly as bad. Though, I have to say, I think girls with masculine names born today will have it easier than Tyson did. I’m assuming she was born in the late 70s (since the Mike Tyson incident was in 1997 and she mentions being in college around that time…), but I’ve met so many young girls with masculine surnamey first names (the obvious Addison/Madison, in addition to Taylor, Peyton, Hayden, Kennedy, Regan, Emerson not to mention the more obscure- Carson, Paxton, Grayson). So I’d be interested to hear this type of story ten/fifteen years from now, from the point of view of a female Carson born in the 2000s living in a world more aware of “unisex” naming trends.

  11. M Says:

    Thank you for writing this! I think responses like Stefanie’s are few and far between. And as you can see, most of us are on your side.

  12. Christina Fonseca Says:

    Loved reading your post. I’ll be saving this in my Favorites; hopefully it will give parents food for thought. There’s more to naming a baby than finding something “cute” without thinking about others’ perceptions and possible consequences.

  13. Christina Fonseca Says:

    Just wanted to compliment you on once again choosing a great visual to tie in to the post!

    Whether it’s a watercolor, something famous, or a photograph, I admire your talent.

  14. D.Beth Says:

    I know how you feel–to an extent. My given name is Dani–just Dani, not Danielle, not Danica, Dani. Growing up I got a lot of “Did your parents want a boy?” and even had teachers who downright refused to call me Dani, even though it’s my name. It doesn’t help matters that my father’s name is Dan. Whenever I call in take-out orders, I use either my middle name (which is girly, thankfully) or Danielle, just to avoid confusion. Even though the spelling (should) point out to people that I’m a female, the first day of classes, or whenever there was a substitute, was always a pain for me, since I too am very shy and disliked the attention!
    Thank you Tyson for sharing your story with us!!

  15. Meredith Says:

    I love this post! I’m so obsessed with name blogs but rarely do I find something that is worthy enough to share with my husband, who is truly uninterested. He laughed along with me–not to laugh at your troubles, but I had never heard of anyone with quite as many struggles for having a masculine name.

  16. vomiting Says:

    Names are not trivial.

    I, too, felt that elements of the essay had homophobic undertones. Like how ‘funny’ it looked to have Tyson and Gregory on a wedding announcement, and that a man entering the world of Interior Design must be gay [author even states that she can see how employers would assume that].

    I’d assume Tyson was male upon reading the name, but I wouldn’t assume he was gay based on his occupation and the fact that this is passed off as an understandable assumption is kind of depressing. There are homosexual readers of this blog who are discriminated against often.

    But gosh, I’m really not about to get into a heated discussion about discrimination and societal attitudes.

    Thank you Tyson for sharing your experiences as a woman with a male name. I have to ask, did your Mother have any other children? What were their names?

  17. vomiting Says:

    I also want to state having re-read the essay that the writer of the essay come across as homophobic. She just raises issues that are upsetting to some.

  18. youcantcallitit Says:

    All those art classes finally paying off! ;-)

  19. youcantcallitit Says:

    This whole blog “smacks of first world problems.”

    I asked Tyson to share her experiences with her name, and am so grateful that she did get so specific. She did so not to “be a martyr”, but at my behest. The undertones of sexism and homophobia are not on the part of the author, and racism? I don’t see it.

  20. Sebastiane Says:

    I concur. I am just not seeing how this promotes any of the above.

  21. Sebastiane Says:

    I enjoyed your essay. People are always going to get offended over the littlest things and I would not let that stop you from writing about your experiences.

  22. Lindsey Says:

    Oh, thank you, Tyson. I’m saving this for next time I hear someone say how cute it is to put a boys’ name on a girl… or worse, call it “unisex”, just because it’s a name being used for a girl. Well-written and I feel for you- my own name is fairly unisex (well, in today’s society, it’s usually female, though male in origin) and I STILL get annoyed by people thinking I’m a guy, which STILL happens.

    I have three daughters. They all have names that have loooooong histories of exclusively female usage.

    (Also, this was neither sexist nor homophobic. I didn’t get the impression you were annoyed at people thinking you were a gay male, I got the impression you were annoyed at people thinking you were a male. I don’t blame you one bit. As to what other people’s judgments were as to whether that made you gay or if that was funny or stereotypes or whatever… well, that wasn’t the topic of this post. It would have been a pretty odd tangent.)

  23. Casey Says:

    Thank you for your post! As someone with a name that is considered “unisex,” I still often deal with mail addressed to Mr. and the occasional confused look when I meet someone in person, although nowhere near your experience!

    The other side of this is that once a male name begins to be associated with girls, it’s harder to give it to a boy (e.g. Avery), in my opinion (which I personally found boy names so much harder than girls when naming my son!)

  24. LittleQueen Says:

    I think LP makes a great point…we shouldn’t assume that a girl given a male name today will face the same challenges as a woman given a male name 30 years ago.

    My daughter’s playmates are Teagan (female), Ryan (female), Rylan (male), Jamie (male), Bobbi (female), etc. With so many androgynous names, I can only assume society will adjust to this trend, as little girls with masculine names are becoming more common.

    I think names like Peyton, Kennedy, etc. are not ‘masculine’ when given to a little girl, but interesting and beautiful.

  25. youcantcallitit Says:

    It is a very good point, and I’m betting that this would take on a completely different tone if written 25 years from now.

  26. Lisa Says:

    I’m having a baby girl in January and her name is traditionally a boys name. I didn’t pick it to be “cute”, in fact quite the opposite. I wanted something non-cute. Strong and original, but not weird. This name fulfills all of that for us. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and if someone thinks it’s “cute or unisex” and that’s what they want, so what?

  27. Kelly Says:

    Also, with the rise in these names being used for both genders I think the issues that people claim that boys with unisex names will suffer from will not be as much of a problem as well. I support those who want to use originally masculine names that have been usurped by the girls on boys again (sorry Casey who replied earlier), such as my own (Kelly, a proud male bearer of the name albeit with some confusion but not to the same extent that Tyson described).

  28. Kelly Says:

    I meant to add to my comment: The reason I encourage those who like a “unisex” name for a boy to use it and not turn away from it is that’s what causes so many of these names to “go girl”; if parents would keep using them for boys they’d stay at least somewhat masculine.

  29. Toni Says:

    THANK YOU for writing this. Yes, I’m shouting :) My given name is Toni and I have had just about every single one of these problems. From my new boyfriend at the time (now husband) being embarrassed to tell his parents that “HER name is Toni,” to job interviewers and then work clients being flabbergasted when I walk in instead of the “Tony” they were expecting. I was always girl-Toni and there’s always been guy-Tony around. Now my sister is married to a Tony and it gets even more confusing.

    Giving a girl a male name isn’t cute, it is a hassle for her for the rest of her life! Yeah, I could have changed my name when I got married, but it would have offended my mother who knows my opinion of my name and still stands by it. I would rather deal with correcting people’s “corrections” than deal with breaking my mother’s heart.

  30. Mary Says:

    I think you’re very brave, Tyson, to even broach this subject in today’s world.

    Every expectant parent has the right to name their child what they want. Absolutely. I don’t dispute that at all. But, everyone else in the world is entitled to their opinion about the name chosen. I just hope they keep that opinion to themselves once the baby is actually born and named.

    To speak about the trouble one has had with her name is a difficult topic, not the least of which because there’s no guarantee that one person’s experience will in any way mirror another’s. What you have done, Tyson, is simply explain what *could* be for the parents who are thinking of names.

    It’s the responsibility of expectant parents to seriously consider the implications of the names they are choosing. For instance, my last name begins with an S, so I will never name my son Andrew Stephen, even if it’s my favorite name: his initials would be ASS. I will not set my son up for jokes his whole life. Just something to consider.

    I’ve always just thought…what’s wrong with girl names for a girl? There are literally hundreds of thousands – even millions. Not ONE of them was good enough?

  31. Catherine Says:

    I know this is late enough that probably no one will see it, but what the heck…

    I had trouble with the gov’t bugging me to register for the draft, and received several letters addressed to “Mr. Catherine …” I repeatedly sent in the documentation to establish that my gender meant I didn’t have to register for the draft, but what finally worked was my father calling them up. So, FYI, having a name that is clearly traditionally a girl’s name is no defense against that sort of thing.

    What has always bugged me is that I always introduce myself as “Catherine” — I have NEVER been a “Cathy” — and almost every time, people will turn around and call me Cathy. (I just want to yell, “I JUST SAID my name not 5 seconds ago; do you have the memory of a gnat?!”) I will also spell my name, and then watch people write down “K-a-…”

    And, believe it or not, people will mispronounce my name; I’ve heard quite a bit of “Cath-uh-REEN,” and my sister-in-law Theresa frequently meets people who pronounce her name “Thuh-RESS-uh” (with the “th” pronounced like the last two letters in “booth”).

    With very few exceptions, everyone will have to deal with name confusion and/or name annoyances. (“Sam” probably won’t be misspelled — but if it’s short for “Samantha,” confusion will occasionally ensue.) Such is life. Idiots are out there in force.

  32. Deedee Says:

    Way late as well but also wanted to chime in on “unusual” names where people have no clue whether you are a male or a female due to your name. I was blessed (or cursed, rather) with a very unusual name and whenever someone asks my name there has to be a five minute discussion about it (“wow, that’s different”, “I’ve never heard that name before” “where did your parents get that name?”) and of course I have to spell it every single time for every single person. And nobody can figure out how to pronounce it so that’s always fun too. I always longed for a nice easy common name. My mother was so proud of giving me a “strong and unusual” name. So that I would stand out from the crowd and be unique. All it did was make me wish I was like everybody else.

  33. Alexandra Says:

    I am so thankful for my name. It is beautiful and strong, and if I want to be more masculine sometimes, I can go by Alex. Plus, ‘helper/defender of mankind’. LOVE. ;)

  34. Alexandra Says:

    As a follow up: I’m not the author of the blog I’m about to link [another Alex, but this person goes primarily as Alex], but I saw this & it reminded me of this discussion. Very sad:

  35. Seriously!? Says:

    That sucks for you, but really, had it really bugged you THAT much you should have changed your name as soon as you turned 18. Sounds like you’re just writing out a sob story so people will pity you because you’ve had SUCH a harsh life because of your name. Seriously?! There’s teens that get teased because of how they look and they’ve gotten plastic surgery. So a simple name change should have been cake walk for you. So either change it and put an end to it or keep it and shut up.

    Other than that, ya, I agree with you, people shouldn’t give girls boys names and vice versa.

  36. Seriously!? Says:

    Another thing,

    You yourself said that the experiences a person has and their personality determines who they are and their character. So by your logic and if you change your name, you will still be the same person you are, just with a different name.

    So, seriously, quit the sob stories and decide what you’re going to go with.

  37. You Can't Call It "It"! Says:

    To Seriously!?,

    Why the vehement negativity? I suspect there’s more to the story here. Tyson’s story is a cautionary tale of what kind of confusion can arise from gender bending names. I invited her to come here and tell her story, and don’t understand why you feel the need to attack her?

  38. Another Tyson Says:

    I just found this article today. I’m a girl and my name is Tyson. There are downsides to having a boy name, but I think the Tyson in the article is taking it a little too far. I went through all the same things that “Tyson1″ did. I was called names in grade school. Got teased about biting people’s ears off and then teased every time the cafeteria had chicken. In elementary I was crushed when every kid had a pencil or ruler with their name on it. Nothing was sold with the name Tyson on it, unless I wanted to carry a bag of frozen chicken around. On the first day of second grade I was given a blue name tag when all the other girls got pink. My college tried to put me in a guy dorm and when I got that straightened out my roommate assumed I would be a black girl. I constantly have my ID checked. Picking up medication is almost impossible. I’ve walked into interviews where they tell me they are looking for a guy and then turn me away. In my job I communicate with people around the world, who all think I’m a guy. Meeting business contacts for the first time is always surprising….for them. But you know what, I wouldn’t trade my name for anything. You know why? Because it’s the name my parents gave me. My mom loves my name and I would never hurt her by changing it. And my name has made me who I am today. I got really good at brushing off the jokes and making up jokes of my own. In high school I ran for student government using the Tyson Foods Logo. I have numerous pictures of me at Tyson Foods factories. When I go to trade shows I return with pens, paper, and stress balls from Tyson Foods. When they see my name tag they always shove goodies in my face to take home. And the number one reason why I wouldn’t change my name: People remember me. If my name was Rachel or Jill it would be easier….and no one would remember me. But when I walk into an interview or meeting and surprise people, they are always going to remember my name and face as the girl who they thought was a boy. Being remembered is great! I went to a huge university, but all my professors knew my name. My boss’ boss’ boss remembers me even though he’s only met me twice. My name is part of who I am. It comes with certain challenges, and some days I can get annoyed when I just want to grab my medication and leave without providing three forms of ID. But for the most part I feel my name has made me a stronger person. It’s forced me to not be shy, to speak up and correct people who address me as Mr. Plus I love making my profile picture me standing in the frozen food section. I guess I see the humor in my name in a positive way, rather than a negative way, like “Tyson1″ does. My name makes me unique and memorable. I love it!

  39. Tyson.C Says:

    My name is Tyson and I’m also female. I love my name I admit that I manage to shock people in many way ways. But for me my name is not the only reason people are taken back by me. For one I have two different colored eyes from the result of a car accident when I was 18 months old, one hazel one blue very long story behind that, I’m tall 5″9, very light skinned African American women with naturally blonde hair. So I have always had people either shocked by my name or my appearance. But all these things has made me see past a name or what someone looks like. I have had my share of stares and whispers growing up but that molded me into the strong willed wife and mother I am today. To each there own, but what drives me crazy the most is how you pernouce it. Not Tyron, Tysen, Tycie, I own my name and I love it. I’m happy to also know now that I’m not the only women named Tyson because in the 35 years of my life I have never known and other one myself but when you ask my mom where she got the name from she would tell you it was from a woman she befriended when my dad was in the Army stationed Kansas at the time. The women was a model and also had a husband or boyfriend in the army at the time. My mother stated to me that she feel in love with that name because of how beautiful that lady was and decided that she would name me that no matter if I was a boy or girl. I have learned to be light hearted about it all, like negitve comments or reactions of my name I laugh it off. I enjoyed reading about the other woman named Tyson on this post thanks for sharing.

  40. Tyson.C Says:

    Sorry for the typos my phone corrects me all the time : )

  41. waltzingmorethanmatilda Says:

    It entertained me that Tyson didn’t want to give her daughters boy names, so she’s considering Lauren or Jocelyn – both used to be male names.

    Who knows, maybe one day Tyson will be as accepted on a girl as Darcy, or Sasha, or Charlie are today?

    Somebody has to be pioneer with new name trends (or we’d all still be called Ugg or something), and obviously it can be quite a pain sometimes.

  42. drewame14 Says:

    my mother named my two sisters and I with boy/girl names, but coupled with very feminine middle names, Morgan Catherine, Drew Amelia, and Kamryn Joelle. My name, Drew, is by far the most masculine and when introducing myself to new people I often include, “And no it’s not short for anything.”
    I’ve had substitutes in high school think I’m playing a joke on them when taking role, jumping to the conclusion that I would be a boy, and it will take the whole class backing me up to get them to believe me.
    So far I’m very proud of my name; I always get a few laughs when people ask where my parents got the name (most of them expecting Drew Barrymore to be the inspiration) and I tell them Drew Bledsoe. I feel my name fits my personality, it being a strong, independent name, it’s masculinity making it tough and myself being a tough girl it fits.

  43. Wesley Clock Says:

    I have a boys name (wesley andrews) and have experienced ALL of the things you mention above. However I love my name and feel it is very unique. Every girl in my family has a boys name so maybe I didn’t perceive it as you did because I had plenty of company. I have a son, but had he been a girl I was totally going to name her wesley! I’ve always enjoyed not being a caitlyn, ashley or melissa.

  44. Boy2GirlMom Says:

    My issue is a little different. I looked at this website, not because I have a baby on the way, but I was wondering about whether or not there were girls out there named Wesley. When I saw the last post, I was encouraged that indeed there were. My baby was born many years ago and I named him Wesley. However, he does not identify as a boy and wishes to live as a girl. When he said he planned to change his name, I suggested he think about continuing to go by Wesley because it could be one of those unisex names. His name is a family name (both last and first) and I love it, but not as much as I love my child. Whatever he chooses, I will support him. Btw, for those wondering, he is just now an adult, so can legally choose for himself and I am not yet calling him “her” because he’s not yet living as a female. Besides, in all honesty, it’s going to take time for me to get used to the change. I raised a boy and wasn’t expecting anything different. That’s another relevant observation, try as you might to pick the right name for your child, there’s no crystal ball to tell you how things are going to turn out.

  45. Tysen Says:

    Far late on the post but being that I am also a female Tysen (albeit with an E), I have to post. What I find hilarious is that I found this post researching a baby name for a daughter and one of the name’s I considered was Evan for a girl (which the original poster had for her son’s name). I came to that name out of my own experience: I have always (except for a brief wanting to be andrea around age 8) loved my name and cannot imagine giving my daughter anything but an unusual name that gives her the same experience as I have had. Everybody remembers my name, everybody knows me and I get to surprise people every time I show up. It is far more fun than frustrating. Like the original poster I work in design and people always expect a guy; quite frankly it makes my job easier when you have everyone’s attention by doing nothing other than having a name and what you do to hold it from there is up to you. Yes Tyson Chicken and ear biting jokes get old, but when we were named no one could have seen that coming so whatever, many names will have that issue. I notice the poster and one of the other posters allude to being from/living in the South and I wonder if that made for more issues? I am from the intermountain west and we don’t have Tyson chicken factories and are a little more live and let live about things in general.

    Honestly I have almost a hard time believing that it was so hard for Tyson because other than some chicken, ear biting, mispronunciation and always getting Tyler, Taylor etc the benefits have far exceeded the annoyances and I am not sure that many other names get the same. I happen to not ever be able to keep Mike, Mark and Matt straight since they are all to similar sounding to me. I have to believe that this issue depends on the personality of the named: I own it and love and am reading this with my female friend Lane who is similarly bemused. There are two other Tyson’s on here saying it ain’t so bad. I really don’t care that my mail is all messed up. I have never ever been sent to male gym class or not gotten a prescription, seriously that sounds like bs or you need to move someplace with a wee bit of diversity and that would go away.

    For all the baby girl namers reading I say go for it and just raise independent and free spirited girls who aren’t afraid to make jokes about chicken fingers or boxers, at least no one asks which Madison or Kelly they are referring to. That would make the job interview issue even more difficult no?

  46. susan Says:

    I’m with your mom, I love the name Toni. I don’t assume Toni/Tony is boy or girl. Not that I don’t believe you about the mix-ups you’ve had, but I’m surprised that it has given you that much grief that you would rather have had a different name.
    I’ve only known two Toni’s; one was a very pretty, popular girl in school and one was a very nice co-worker. They are part of the reason I love the name. Interestingly enough, I don’t remember any Tony boys in my life. There must have been several, but maybe I don’t remember because Tony for a boy is unremarkable.
    Also, the mojo for Tony and Toni is different. Tony for a boy just makes me think Italian-Anthony. Toni for a girl seems modern, whimsical, sunny and cute.

  47. jayden amaya Says:

    Wow. I’m super late commenting on this, but I’m going to comment anyway. My name is Jayden Amaya. I was born a little while after Jaden Smith. My mom knowingly gave me a boys name. In fact her shortlist consisted of Jayden, Austyn, and Evan. My dad hates unisex names, and I don’t think he realized that he let my mom give me a boys name until after I was born. I have a younger sister named Camille. It’s super annoying when people ask my parents about their son and daughter. I don’t think my name has been as much of an issue for me as Tyson’s name was for her though. I grew up in a mostly Hispanic, Vietnamese, and African-American community. Because of all the different ethnicities people are pretty used to different names. Plus I know many girls named Tyler, Ryan, Evan, and Carson. My main issue with my name is how trendy it is. Every year there’s at least one other Jayden/Jaiden/Jaden/Jadon/Jaidyn in my grade(along with the many Jaylas, Jadas, Jaylens, Kadens etc.). Surprisingly most Jaydens I’ve met who are my age have been girls. Most girls spell it Jaiden though. People always try to spell my name like that once they find out I’m a girl, which is crazy because Jayden is the most common spelling. I plan on going by Amaya or Maya once I get to college. My mom says that my name will probably help me in the work force because people won’t know that I’m a girl. I also have an extremely uncommon Arabic surname(grandparents changed it after they converted to Islam), so people might assume that I’m a middle eastern man. I don’t think that’s a good thing, especially after 9/11. I wouldn’t reccomend giving your daughter a boys name, but in the 21st century it’s not going to be a traumatic experience.

  48. Tai Says:

    Came across this article looking up name information for babies. My name is Tai Marie and I feel like I could have written this myself! :)

  49. Ronnie Says:

    My name is Ronnie I am a Mother to Spencer a girl, while she has the trials and tribulations as Tyson she loves her name and wouldn’t have it any other way.

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