No middle name shame

Middle Name Pride Day (MNPD) was created by name-enthusiast Jerry Hill as a special time to celebrate middle names in response to the way some people respond with shame and embarrassment to, or even concealment of, their middle names, according to

Hill is so enthusiastic about helping people to share their names, that he’s managed to get MNPD listed on the official annual calendar of events, encouraging people to participate in this way: “Today’s name celebration requires honesty and boldness. Tell three people who don’t already know it what your middle name is (even if it’s Egbert). Annually, the Friday of Celebrate Your Name Week”.

Why the shame?

It’s amazing how many adults are shy about sharing their middle names. Some omit their middle names off documents or simply reduce the name to an initial. It could be that your middle name is an out-of-fashion family name, or that it clashes with your surname. It could be that you remember your parents using it only when they were extremely angry- "Franklin Delano Roosevelt, you will tidy your room!"

Middle names often have a story behind them. Parents may want to remember a lost loved one or some other happy occasion. Perhaps they couldn’t decide between two names and went with both. Here’s what some of our Facebook friends responded when asked about middle names:

'I named him Oranges...'

  • “My first sons 2nd name is Benjamin. Its my late dad and my father in law's 2nd 2nd sons 2nd name is James...after the book of James in the Bible and our daughters 2nd name is Grace, for God has been so gracious to us and it compliments her first name beautifully, Mikayla-Grace” Mercia
  • “My son, Liam, was named after my maternal grandfather William and his second and third names are "John McGregor" which have been the family names for generations. Besides, if I had to go through school with four names, then so must Liam. My daughter is called "Emily Jane" after Emily Bronte and Jane Austen (my wife is an English literature teacher).” Michael
  • “My ex-husband picked my eldest son's middle name - Peter - after Peter Green from Fleetwood Mac (my maiden name was green. He is named in remembrance my late grandmother - Duncan.” Lucienne
  • “My son’s middle name is my father in laws name. He struggled with cancer and is a survivor, so it was to 'honour' him. Plus, he’s genuinely a pretty amazing guy!” Debbie
  • “I gave my daughter my second name Leigh as I got my BF at the time to fill out my ID Forms while I stood in line and he left out my second name but I’m glad my daughter has it now.” Cherilyn
  • " I named him oranges bcoz i used to love oranges" Nelvia
You can picture your own parents, chatting excitedly about their baby-to-be; one of the most fun experiences of becoming a parent is getting to choose a name. Sometimes it’s an intense negotiation, sometimes it’s just difficult to settle on the right one, even after baby is born, but no matter what the story is which helped to name you, it’s worth celebrating your middle name and its origins.

What's your story?

Mine is ‘Gibson’. It was my mother’s maiden name, and, since she and her sisters all changed names when they married, I’m the only one left who has it in their name. I’m proud of that. Also, it’s the same name as an awesome guitar.

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Do you have a middle name with a story? What about your children?

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