Tuesday, March 07, 2006

What's in a Name?

My son is a shameless flirt. Add that to his extreme cuteness, and we've got trouble on our hands. I think he could charm the socks off about anybody. We go shopping and people stop to talk to him, tell us how cute he is, and he gives this look. I call it his coy look. It's so flirty. He puts his head down slightly, looks up through his long eye lashes (lashes like that should be illegal on a boy!) and this little smile. It melts practically anybody. No matter where we go and no matter who we meet, Camden flirts, especially with the ladies.
I found myself pondering this yesterday - is Camden a natural charmer or is his name part of it? Let me explain.

When we found out I was pregnant with a boy, we had to decide on a name. We wrote a list of ten names we liked for boys, which we narrowed down to four and finally to two. But we were stuck on those two names for about a month. We liked both equally, even though they were different. One was Benjamin and the other, of course, was Camden. We polled our family. We polled our friends. I polled my students. And it was a pretty equal divide - half for Camden and half for Benjamin. But there was an interesting trend. Most of the girls preferred Camden and most of the boys preferred Benjamin. I remember polling my classes last year and in each on, all the girls voted for Camden and all the boys voted for Benjamin. We joked about it and the girls told me that the name Camden would make him popular with the ladies.

That's not why we chose to name him Camden. In the end, that was the name which just felt right for our little boy. And so Camden he is. But I wonder, is he just a natural flirt and charmer? Or does his name play a part of it? Does a name really help to make the man? The world may never know.

13 comments:

The Constant Gardener said...

That's an interesting thing to think about...I think names can definitely play a role. I mean, how popular is the kid named Hubert going to be? Will the girls like him no matter how cute he is? Or will he ever really be cute b/c his name held him back and kept him just a bit geeky? Fun to think about...

Maine Mom said...

Very Interesting! I love the name Camden and I've thought about naming our last boy (if we have a last boy) Camden...but now I'll have to rethink this...do I want my baby to be a ladies' magnet because he has an attractive name??? Maybe we should stick with the name Magnus. I wish I would have read this post before I had kids...then I could have given them all names that would not appeal to the opposite sex!

smartmama said...

i have to say i think camden is a perfect name-- and yes a charmer-- I am all about names though...

Diana - Teacher Mom said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Diana - Teacher Mom said...

Camden is a lovely name. As a teacher, I've come across several names but I've never came across a student by that name. Looks like he's going to be a very successful and charismatic leader:
http://www.mybirthcare.com/favorites/M/Scottish/meaning.asp?name=Camden

At A Hen's Pace said...

He REALLY is a cutie! I don't know if it's the name, tho...I know an adorable little toddler named Henry, and a handsome teenager named Harry!

Lisa M. said...

Henry is cropping back up on the list of favorites, I have noticed. Which seems so odd to me.

I know five C[K]amdens, two of which are girls.

It's a great name.

Though I have to say, I think it is other things that make the man.

For instance, in my High School there was a kid named Wally (on grade ahead of me) and he was teased and tortured for almost every little thing. Another kid named Wally who was a kid in the grade behind me, he was loved and adored by all.

Wally? Yipes.

Good Question though.

Mama D said...

I hear you. Since the day Audrey was born everyone has gone on and on, and on about how gorgeous she is. I agree but am biased and decide people are being polite. Until the day we are filling up at the gas station. She starts staring up at the 16 year old boy pumping gas and he is so enamoured with her he nearly overflows our tank, all smiles and waving at her. THAT was when I learned of her beguiling powers. I fear for puberty. If she has this affect on boys now, oh man, I don't even want to think about it.

Kristen said...

Hmmmm....good question. I think your cute little boy knows he's cute and takes full advantage of it! :-) Some kids just are natural, outgoing little socialites. He's a cutie!

MusicalMom said...

That's really interesting! I've heard that names help shape who people become, professionally. I wonder if there are any studies out there to prove it?

And fwiw, I prefer Camden to Benjamin. :)

Lei said...

Camden - definitely a good name for a charmer - but I bet it's just what his sweet little soul truly is, through and through!

Taffi said...

My best friend's little boy is Camden (he just turned 8). He's a nice enough kid, but no charmer. It's because he's your kid that he's so adorable! :-)

Anonymous said...

I remember reading a study once that suggested that names really influence a childs character. The researchers studied children with unusual or generally un-likeable names and found that they were less likely to be in the popular or well-liked groups.

By the way, I have a 20 month old named Camden. He's a doll with a great sense of humor. I thought the big blue eyes would do me in, but now I have the name too - doh!
melissa