Naming a child after his father - When is he a junior?

So, you are thinking of naming your baby after his dad and you’re wondering if your little boy would be considered a junior?  Technically, if you want your baby to be a junior, you would need to use the dad’s first, middle and last name.  Using a different middle or last name, would no longer be considered a junior.  Some parents still call their child a junior even if his name doesn’t meet these requirements, but a son is not generally considered junior unless he is using the dad’s full name.

Traditionally all the men in the family need to be alive in order to be considered a Sr., Jr., III, etc.  For example, if a grandfather, dad and son were alive and all shared the exact same name the grandfather would be Sr.  The dad would be Jr.  And, the son would be the III.  If grandfather dies, the dad would become Sr. and the son would become Jr.

If you would like to use dad’s name but would prefer that he not be called a Jr. or III you can use the dad’s name with a different middle name.  Keep in mind that while people generally follow the traditional rules when it comes to junior and senior, etiquette and trends on baby names may change.  Your parents, grandparents, and friends might not see your baby as a junior if he doesn’t fit the traditional guidelines for being a junior, but that doesn’t mean you can’t call him whatever you’d like.  But yes, if you go with a different middle or last name, technically when grandma tells you that he is not a junior, according to tradition she is correct.

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