Choosing Names for Twins and Multiples

Playing the Name Game

High angle view of two babies laying on blanket
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What's in a name? It identifies a person for life. It conjures up an image of a personality type. We rely on our "good name" and try to avoid being given a "bad name."

All parents strive to select the perfect name for their offspring, but parents of twins or multiples may find themselves particularly challenged to make the right choice for two, three or more children. In addition to deciding on the right individual name, they have to consider how the names work together as a set.

Should the names rhyme? Share the same initial? Compliment or contrast each other? Be individualistic or unique? These are just some of the strategies that parents employ for evaluating name combinations.

Important Things to Consider

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you're mulling over this decision:

  • How do I decide which baby gets which name? Does the first-born twin get the first choice name?
  • What if I name one baby after a family member, and the family shows a preference for that baby?
  • How will these name sound when I call my children to dinner or when they are announced at their high school graduation?
  • What are the potential nicknames for these choices?
  •  Do the names remind me of other people-- either in a good way or a bad way?
  • What are the potential misspellings and alternate spellings for these names?
  • Will we be able to find personalized items with these names on them? What if one is commonly available and the other isn't?

    Advice From Other Parents of Multiples

    Like many issues in raising multiples, opinions are divided on this subject. Some people advocate forsaking "twinny" names in favor of individuality. Others seek out complimentary names or combinations that begin with the same initial.

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