10 Baby Names That Won't Make a Comeback

Baby wearing hat sitting outside
Cuiyan Liu/Stocksy United

There are some baby names that are cyclic. They are popular and then fall by the wayside, only to resurface a few generations later. I think of these as grandparent names. You know, names that our grandparents were named that lost favor for whatever reason. Then all of a sudden they are popular again, either because someone dusted off a family name or a new celebrity decided that they wanted to use the name for their baby.

Whatever the reason, the name surges in popularity again.

However, in addition to these names, there is another set of baby names. But these names were probably a mistake the first time around and won't be making a comeback for naming a baby anytime soon. There are a variety of reasons that these names aren't popular now, either because of some historical or popular wisdom about others with the name or simply because they don't sound pleasing. (Though some exceptions apply like Herbert VI.) Here are my predictions for additions to that list of no-no baby names:

Girls Names

  • Mildred
    When my husband and I read names from a baby name book, sometimes we don't read names we'd pick, but rather baby names that we would never pick. I said this one out loud which led to some word association. He summed it up in one word: "Mildew?"
  • Eula
    I remember reading a book where the character's mother-in-law was named Eula Lee. All I could think was that name really summed up the consummate bad mother-in-law image. I wasn't even sure it was a real name until I saw it listed in an obituary.
  • Deloris
    Despite the puns with this name from Jerry Seinfeld, I can't see this name ever making a comeback. Or maybe it's because of the rhymes with selections from the TV show. That said, I do know some people with this name who are lovely people and don't mind their name.
  • Gladys
    With this name you have to weigh the amazing singer with the neurotic neighbor from Bewitched... I'm with you on this one. I love the glad part, though.
  • Norma
    Blech. Just plain and boring, no real associations. Just blah. Try saying this out loud several times. You start to drone without even meaning to do so.

Boys Names

  • Herman
    Other than Herman Munster, I can't think of a positive role model for this name. And let's face it that Herman isn't a great monster to name a kid after.
  • Chester
    I can say this because my grandfather was Chester. When we went to name a baby in his memory we had a really hard time. Thankfully we just used the first initial and called it good.
  • Elbert
    This is a great name for an elf. Maybe a reindeer. Other than that, not for me thanks.
  • Norman
    Much like the female version, Norma, there isn't a lot here to work with. It could be thought to be associated with normal, but as the book says, "Why be normal?"
  • Ralph
    Why would you name a kid after a euphemism for a bodily function?

What's your take? Do you think these names are prime for a come back? Do you have a child or friend with one of these names? Perhaps one works as a middle name, hidden away?

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