Baby Names and Pakistani Culture
Baby Names and Pakistani Culture
Grandparents and Baby Names
In Pakistani culture, naming a baby is considered the right of the grandparents, particularly if the baby is the first child in the family. Parents cannot name their own baby because the grandparents’ wish carries more weight than theirs. Sometimes grandparents give the baby a name that they thought of decades before the baby’s birth. For example, a relative of mine gave her son a name that was thought of almost 30 years ago by her mother. This was a name her mother had wanted to give to her own son, but when she got three daughters, she thought instead that she would give the name to her grandson.
The grandparents’ wish is always supreme. My cousin told me another funny baby-naming incident. She had her first baby and wanted to name him ‘Usman’. This name was not approved by her in-laws, who had already decided to name their grandson ‘Waqar’. When my cousin objected, saying that the name seemed to be a bit old-fashioned, her mother-in-law snubbed her, saying, ‘Waqar kabi purana nahi hota‘.
The Role of Peers in Naming a Baby
In Pakistani culture, giving birth to a baby boy is more desirable than giving birth to a baby girl, which can affect the name-giving process. Parents and grandparents go to the shrines of holy people, praying that they would be blessed with a baby boy and vowing to give him a certain name if they should have a son.
Sometimes, these so-called peers also suggest queer names, which are then a source of embarrassment for the poor boys throughout their lives.
Funny and Embarrassing Names
It has been a trend in Pakistan to name a baby without taking into account its effects on a child’s later life. For example, one girl was named ‘Allah Muaffi’ because she was the 5th daughter, and her parents had wanted a son instead of another daughter. Sometimes parents are so obsessed about having a baby boy that they give a boy’s name to their girl—‘Nadeem’ or ‘Saleem’, for example. Other babies are named ‘Shahzada’ or ‘Shahzadi’, and they are always made fun of due to their names.
Funny Names Around the World
This trend doesn’t just happen in Pakistan, but around the world. A few days ago, a news story about a strange baby name got international attention. A French couple named their baby ‘Nutella’—after a breakfast spread—and the court ordered the parents to change the name because it may ‘lead to mockery and unpleasant remarks’. And in New Zealand, there are some names that have been banned by law, as they may negatively affect the kids’ future. Unfortunately, we cannot expect any such laws in Pakistan, nor will the courts interfere in such ‘tiny’ matters(sourece: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-30993608).
Baby Names Inspired by Digest Stories and TV Dramas
It is common in Pakistan for people to be inspired by the names of characters in digest stories and TV dramas. Some years back, for example, ‘Salaar’ was the hero in a digest story. After that many people named their sons ‘Salaar’. ‘Zaroon’ was the name of a hero in a TV drama, and many young kids have been named ‘Zaroon’. Baby girls’ names, such as ‘Nartashia’, ‘Myra’, ‘Diya’, and ‘Wafa’, are also inspired by digest stories and TV dramas. Pakistani people are also very familiar with ‘Hooram Sultan’, as she was the heroine of a Turkish drama that was dubbed in Urdu and telecast in Pakistan. As a result, many girls have been named ‘Hooram’.
Baby Names Inspired by Historical and Famous Personalities
It is a custom to name babies after famous figures in history or famous living legends. We come across many people named ‘Imran Khan’ in daily life and even in the media. Legendary player-turned-politician, Imran Khan, inspired this name. Along the same lines, many kids have the nickname ‘Tipu’. However, people would never name their baby after a politician no matter how famous he/she is, as politicians in Pakistan are not liked at all.http://www.pakparenting.com/baby-names-and-pakistani-culture/http://www.pakparenting.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/baby_name-1.jpghttp://www.pakparenting.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/baby_name-1-150x150.jpgBabiesThe Name Gamebaby,baby names,pakistani babies,Pakistani parentsBaby Names and Pakistani Culture Grandparents and Baby Names In Pakistani culture, naming a baby is considered the right of the grandparents, particularly if the baby is the first child in the family. Parents cannot name their own baby because the grandparents' wish carries more weight than theirs. Sometimes grandparents give...Pak Parenting Teamkhadija Imtinanadmin@pakparenting.comAdministratorPak Parenting