Nicknames or No Nicknames: What’s Your Preference?


My father in law doesn't believe in nicknames. He named his second son David so people would call him David. That we all call him Dave is very disconcerting to @troypattee's dad. That Dave is such a Dave, doesn't really matter. It's the principle of the matter and at least in the mind of my father in law, nicknames are a no no!

Let's take it a step further.

You meet a person and immediately, he or she starts calling you by a nickname? Does that endear you to that person or are you immediately bugged?

My friend and team member BreAnne, for example, has called me JyllyBean since birth. Well, it feels like since birth. The fact that we've only known each other since May is a minor technicality. Some people would have been seriously put off by that, but  I love it! Why? Because from the first time we went to lunch, I felt super comfortable with her. She was so familiar and fun that I found myself feeling more myself around her than with people I had known forever. And what is better than feeling like you can be 100% your true self when you're around someone? So JyllyBean it is!

Now, I won't lie to you. If some dirty old dude or the equivalent of a used car salesman stereotype walks up to me and calls me sweetie, I may give him my best mean-girl look (and I've been told I have a seriously mean, mean-girl face, heaven help me!). But for the most part, I'm a nickname gal.

Apparently, I'm also an it's-OK-to-change-your-name gal too since I changed the spelling of my name at the ripe old age of 6. But changing your entire name... like from Jyl to Thumbelina... or something drastic like that? Hmmmmm! That, I'd need to think about.

What's your preference? Nicknames or no nicknames? And where do you stand on letting your kids change the spelling of or their names in general?

Photo courtesy of Flickr.

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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