The Queerty Gay Baby Naming Guide

Last week’s Advocate interview with actor Chris Evans talking about how his mother “was praying for [he and his gay also-hot/ also-actor brother, Scott] to be gay” reminded us of all the parents out there that would not just be happy to have a gay child, but actively want to have an adorable homo tyke of their own. One straight friend in high school would foist his mother on your editor again and again because his love of the ladies was such a crushing disappointment to her and I could you know, talk to her about musical theater.

Let’s face facts here: Gay babies are in. Everyone wants one, unless you’re a crazy-evil Southern Baptist who thinks depriving your kid of rainbow-colored crayons will keep them straight. Gay kids are just like regular children, except they like to do things like go to classical music concerts and watch Auntie Mame (both versions!) on the sofa all afternoon. And who wouldn’t want an honest-to-goodness baby dyke to fix up your Rav 4?

Coercing your child’s sexuality to fit your own personal preference is pretty creepy, we admit, but giving your child a name that says “pizazz” and “style” is a gift no matter what his or her sexuality winds up being. Want a gay baby? Start with the name.

For Boys:

Basically, the gayest name of all time, so your child (and everyone you know) will know right away your personal preference. That said, as stereotypical as the name might be, it has a great pedigree: Just think of the Bruce’s Springteen, Willis and Wayne. The name hasn’t been popular since the 50s, making it perfect for the Mommy looking to inject some Mad Men panache to their pride and joy.

A really trendy name right now (it’s was the 66th most popular name in 2007), Julian conjures up images of Roman glory, conquest and wrestling. The fact that the name’s held by civil rights leader Julian Bond and Beatles spawn Julian Lennon gives it a classy counterculture patina.

Now, we realize Joshua’s a pretty mainstream name as such things go. It’s the 4th most popular name in the country, but the key factor here is that we’re not joshing around. Joshua is a gay name only when enjoyed in all its polysyllabic glory and like Michael, Matthew and Christopher—it can swing whatever way its bearer wants it to go. If by some chance your child fails to show a predilection for Fassbinder films, he can always safely truncate his name for maximum heteronormativity.

Say “Elliot” aloud and try to make it sound anything other than sing-song. Come on, we dare you. See? Doesn’t work. Add to that the fact that it’s the name of a boy who loves aliens, an imaginary dragon and a sad and tragic singer-songwriter and you can be pretty sure that a tyke named Elliot will grow up a starry-eyed dreamer.

Confession: I’ve wanted to have kid named Caleb ever since I was 14 and had a crush on a camp counselor with the name. Unfortunately, Caleb means “dog” in Hebrew, and what with our well-established obsession with all things puppy, it seems like a pretty sure bet that if your editor names his child “Caleb” he will be paying for therapy for years. But it’s a great name! The 33rd most popular right now. Young gay boys will totally crush on your boy if you name him Caleb. I promise.

For Girls:

Derived from Welsh origins, Enid means “soul” or “life” and is coming back in vogue after a century-long exile. There’s something about the name which screams square cut horn-rimmed glass glasses and Seattle.

If you have a boy and a girl and live in Palm Springs, it would be a crime not to name one child Sandra and the other Bruce (see above). Take your mid-century modern obsession to it logical conclusion– and to the Dinah Shore Classic. You’ll be an instant hit. You’ll also be paying homage to Sandra Bernhard. Just don’t be surprised when your child starts swearing at you about what a bitch Madonna is.

Another great name with a queer pedigree, the name has been shared by an early screen idol and the author of The Children’s Hour, one of the first mainstream plays to address lesbianism openly. While the name will never be as popular as it was during the Victorian age when it was the 16th most popular name in the U.S., it’s had a revival in popularity in recent years.

It might just be the “qu” in the name, but Quinn seems like a fun queer name for a kid. It means “counsel” in Gaellic and, thankfully, Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman has been off the air long enough that none of the kids on the playground will make fun of her.

We actually think “Ellen” may be the gay equivalent of “A Boy Named Sue.” Should you name your daughter after daytime’s dancing lesbian, you can be pretty sure she’ll wind up sleeping with every guy she can get her overcompensating hands on. Of course, the fact you dressed her in vests and tennis shoes her whole childhood probably didn’t help, either.

What would you name your gay baby? And what names scream “queen” to you?