It's a little striking just how gendered names in the English language are, with most names meant for only boys or girls. However, it seems that gender neutral baby names are getting more popular here in the U.S. in spite of that fact. Why is it happening? Well, we don't totally know — but BabyCenter, which was the first to notice this trend, theorizes that it's happening because young people today are less hung up on gender binaries than previous generations. I don't know about, but I think that's actually pretty cool.
“As usual, baby names are reflecting a larger cultural shift,” BabyCenter’s Global Editor in Chief Linda Murray explained on their website. “Millennials are an open-minded and accepting group, and they don’t want their children to feel pressured to conform to stereotypes that might be restrictive. Just as companies have started making more neutral kids’ clothes, and taking ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ labels off toys, an increasing number of parents are choosing unisex names.”
All of which are awesome. Our society has a tendency to be very rigid about gender, treating it as an absolute binary made of two and only two impermeable boxes with sacred, unbreakable rules. The fact that most names are gender specific only reinforces this mentality. And although gender neutral names aren't going to bring down the gender binary and force people to recognize gender as a spectrum all on their own, it's still better than the alternative.
So if you are expecting a bundle of joy, here are a few ideas for gender neutral names work for boys, girls, and any gender in between, and that might be fun to add to your list.
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