More parents are giving babies gender-neutral names.
“This generation is truly interested in gender-neutral names,” BabyCenter.com’s global editor-in-chief Linda Murray said, according to The Associated Press.
Co-founder of the baby name site Nameberry.com, Pamela Redmond Satran, explained that many parents are giving their babies unisex names in order to embrace potential gender fluidity. “A lot of people choose unisex names because they think they’re cool or they’re meaningful,” Satran told AP.
“We chose a gender-neutral name, Riley, for my daughter,” Texas psychologist Lori Kinkler told AP about her toddler. “We knew her sex, but gender is fluid and yet to be determined.”
Gender-neutral names are still not as common or popular as traditional male and female names, but have been on the rise, especially among millennial parents. The Social Security Administration publishes a list of top names every year. “Noah” and “Emma” were the most popular boy and girl names in 2016, according to the most recent data.
San Fransisco area mother Kirsten Hammann knows “firsthand the hurdles women face across so many areas of life,” she told AP. “Whether we like it or not, names that skew a little masculine, or less feminine, are perceived as stronger, and I wanted that for my girls.” She named her daughters Teagan and Sigrid.
Some countries — like Portugal, Denmark and Iceland — outlaw unisex names.
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