Babies: 9 - 12 Months

Boys' names that go to the girls' side

I really like the name Ariel, which is a traditional Hebrew boys' name (e.g. Ariel Sharon or the character from The Tempest).  I like that it's Hebrew, since I am Jewish, albeit very secular, and it also fits our important criteria of being easily pronounced in both English and Spanish.  He could go by Ari for short.

But has it gone too far over to the girls' side?  Did the Little Mermaid kill it forever?  Could it still be seen as a unisex name?

On a feminist level, it annoys me that it's fine and even trendy for girls to have unisex or masculine names, but a boy cannot have a name that may be construed as too feminine.  I feel like that sends the subtle message that girls are still worth less than boys.  But on a practical level, I don't want to give a child a name that could get him teased forever.  Cultural values matter.

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Re: Boys' names that go to the girls' side

  • I think Ariel sounds pretty girly now, but Ari is still masculine. I would use the name if I liked it :)
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  • Little Mermaid killed it for boys... I see a purple shell top and long red hair whenever I hear the name.
  • For most people I am sure the little mermaid pulls it to the girls side. If I heard that a boy had that name I wouldn't think it was weird. But since that movie came out a LONG time ago, most kids today may not even know about the little mermaid who are his age.

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  • I think Ariel is probably more girly, but Ari is definitely not. ?I knew a few Aris growing up. ?

    Any others that you're considering??

  • My male cousin's name is Ariel, and he's never had problems being teased that it's too feminine.  Of course, we are Hispanic and it's a name that is always used for boys in our country.
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  • image megs042107:

    I think Ariel is probably more girly, but Ari is definitely not.  I knew a few Aris growing up.  

    Any others that you're considering? 

    We have a few other names we are thinking of, but it's hard to meet the English/Spanish criteria, especially for boys.  Nothing that I love so far.  I'm not pg but I have this gut feeling our next will be a boy! LOL

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  • In Spanish Ariel is strictly a boy's name.  However, I think the American population sees is a girl name any boy named Ariel would seriously get teased.
  • i know several male ariels...and they are all traditional/orthodox jews, so it's not unusual for me.
  • image RaphSandra2005:
    My male cousin's name is Ariel, and he's never had problems being teased that it's too feminine.  Of course, we are Hispanic and it's a name that is always used for boys in our country.
    Yeah my H is Hispanic and it's my understanding that it's more acceptable as a boys' name in Latin communities.
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  • Am I the only one who thinks it was probably Footloose that started to ruin this name for boys?  Although the Little Mermaid definitely was the final nail in the coffin so to speak.

    It also bugs me a lot that boys' names get turned into girls'.  We named DS a name that's used a lot for girls but IMO it's very masculine.  But I still get people who ask, "boy Cameron or girl Cameron?" on the phone.

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  • I say if you like it use it.  My son's name is unisex and rarely (once or twice tops) has he been called a "she"  I figure on the off chance he is teased about it it will add character
  • I know a lot of Jewish guys with this name, so it's not weird for me to hear it as a guy's name. ?I think the boy version is pronounced more like "Ahhh-riel" where the girl version is more "Air-riel" if that makes sense.

    I like the name a lot. ?What about Avi for a boy? ?I like that name too!?

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