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Two Middle Names... what is up with that?

Forum: Baby Names


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May 10th, 2012, 08:40 AM
BeamerMarie- Due Jan 2012
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Texas!
Posts: 416
I'm noticing a lot of people picking two middle names. I think it's really cute and it is a neat idea, but don't you worry it will cause problems on forms and other such things in the future?

I'm a hiring manager for a US Government agency and we have a series of tests that have be taken and the applicant needs and ID and Social Security card to apply. I'm forever having to have people get IDs and SSN Cards changed, and sometimes they have a major hard time. This is most common for people with four names. The SSN Card might say first middle-middle last, and the ID says first middle last, and something else, like college transcripts, says first middle middle-last. That person has to fight with agencies until items are reissued making each name EXACTLY the same. A lot of Driver Licensees will not list all four names, and that creates a mismatch with other identification. Agencies add hyphens and they might not be consistent. Many government forms don't even allow two middle names to be listed, causing one to be left off, or two to be written as one.

I'm not sure if people realize all of these snafus. And yes, they really do cause problems. At least once a month I have to send someone with their birth certificate to argue with the SSN Office, try to get a college to redo transcripts or a high school to redo diplomas (And they don't want to do it!!), or to stand in line at the DMV for corrections, ect.

Just food for thought.
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May 10th, 2012, 10:57 AM
Aillidh's Avatar Nár lagaí Dia do lámh!
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Somewhere in NY
Posts: 8,491
I like the idea of two middle names but I wouldn't use it myself. It's confusing and too long for me, personally.

I almost had 2 middle names when I was confirmed. My given middle name was Rose and I chose Mary as my confirmation name but we changed it to Rosemary. Now my middle name is my maiden name so all of that doesn't even matter.
Finnegan [11.29.15] & Sullivan [08.03.17]
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May 10th, 2012, 12:09 PM
KirstyB's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Crawley, England
Posts: 1,174
I know many people with 2 middle names and none have had problems.

My children have two middle names.
My son Owen has Benjamin and Dominic as his middle names becase my fiance was a triplet but Benjamin and Dominic died at 5 days old. We wanted to honour both of them.
My daughter has two middles names just to match.
Stepson: Oliver - 27/09/09
Son: Owen - 15/08/10
Daughter: Maria - 05/11/11
Baby #4: Due 16/09/14

Last edited by KirstyB; May 10th, 2012 at 02:49 PM.
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May 10th, 2012, 02:30 PM
somo_chickenlady's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Bradleyville, MO
Posts: 3,276
My husband has two middle names, one of which was his original biological last name before he was adopted, so it sounds like he has two last names but doesn't. He has never had any of those problems. *shrug*

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May 10th, 2012, 04:39 PM
Memi's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 5,513
Since I love baby names and have so many I'd like to use I really liked the idea of using two middle names. I ultimately decided against it for a lot of the reasons you mentioned. I didn't want a name I loved or that had importance to never be used if it was one of the two middle names, and I wasn't sure how people with two middle name fill out forms and such.

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May 11th, 2012, 08:13 AM
mrsjl's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Posts: 4,917
we didn't give our kids two middle names because our last name is hyphenated and it is confusing as it is. our last name sucks
mom to
Rebecca (11/22/07) Nathan (7/31/10) & Thomas (5/3/13)
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May 11th, 2012, 08:41 AM
bostoncreampie's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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our kids have my maiden name as a second middle name although we never use it and havent had any issues with not using it yet.
mama to 5 yr old DS1 , 3 year old DS2 , and nursling DD .
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May 11th, 2012, 11:43 AM
GiaTortilla's Avatar FTM to a princess
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,574
Lol I wasn't going to use to two middles names at first until my boyfriend really wanted to because it's like a tradition in our family and the first middle name was to honor his little sister. I have to admit it grew on me though, it has more of a special meaning to it.
CrunchyChristian likes this.

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May 13th, 2012, 12:14 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,142
I kept my maiden name as a second middle name when I took my husband's last name. It has caused some confusion with paperwork but it's not a big deal. If there isn't space for my full name then I don't include the second middle which is my maiden. I would still give a child two middle names. My husband isn't on board with two middles though.
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May 21st, 2012, 09:43 PM
*~ Joni ~*'s Avatar Jordana Jacoby & Jamason
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: PA and AZ
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Our boys have two middles. No problems so far. It's written on their socials with all four names, no hyphens, just like I intended. When forms ask for a middle initial, I just use the initial of the first middle name. No issues yet!
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May 22nd, 2012, 03:48 PM
Gaby&Emmy'sMama's Avatar aka NZ-Emma
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Christchurch, NZ
Posts: 56,618
My daughters both have two middle names and I don't see it creating any confusion.. but I live in NZ and all our government stuff is a lot different - most forms I'veh ad to fill in have 'middle name(s)' written, rather than just 'middle name'

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May 22nd, 2012, 10:23 PM
Mrs.Julie's Avatar Mommy to 3 Princesses
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,256
My daughter has no such problems thus far AND my husband has 2 middle names and 2 last names (as is common in the country he is from) he has no issues. Some things cant list them all but it had never required any of the nonsense some people have to deal with you have mentioned, thankfully.
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May 22nd, 2012, 10:33 PM
Niamh ૐ's Avatar Green Mama Goddess
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Both my kids have two middle names each (and so will this baby and any future kids or ours). We've never had issues with it. I love that they have two middle names.
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May 23rd, 2012, 12:40 AM
Quantum_Leap's Avatar frequent flier
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Seattle area, Washington
Posts: 9,756
I agree with you. We would never consider using two middle names, for a lot of different reasons, but one of them is definitely the forms. It's especially a problem for us, because we travel a lot internationally, have lived in three countries, my son has a Kuwaiti birth certificate, etc. It's hard enough to get visas and whatnot sorted out as it IS, so we don't want to add any further complications.

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May 26th, 2012, 05:43 PM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Nashville Tn
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Each one of my kids have 2 middle names. Never a problem here.

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May 28th, 2012, 07:25 AM
Calendula's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,600
All of my brothers, my father and most the older men in my family, several of my nephews and nieces, some of my sisters, my husband and my daughter all have four names.

I have yet to see any DMV try to refuse to put their full, legal name in their drivers' licenses. My family has worked for government agencies, been in the military, gone to college, no crazy issues have come up. My daughters entire name is on her social security card, and we didn't have to fight for it at all. We filled out the hospital form and then it came with the right, full name on it.

If some agency or interviewer asks about a discrepancy you say "that system wouldn't accept more than three names" and that solves the problem.

Maybe it comes from living in a state with a high concentration of South American immigrants, with the standard practice of using two given names, possibly a religious third middle name, and the surnames of both parents regardless of their marital status.

At worst, the variations will show up as aliases or AKAs. My husband has a AKA from one job that misspelled his middle name by one letter. It didn't cause him any grief having a listed 'alias' when he's gone through nursing or postal service security clearance checks for his work.

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May 31st, 2012, 08:39 PM
RoseRed92's Avatar Veteran
Join Date: May 2012
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 140
I'm giving my son two middle names, and I've heard from people that have done the same that on driver's licenses and things you can abbreviate.

For instance, my son's name will be Raziel Jeremiah Curtis Matelski. It would be abbreviated as Raziel J. C. Matelski.

Would that be in any way confusing on forms and things?

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June 2nd, 2012, 11:29 AM
*CrabLegs*'s Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: NY
Posts: 1,407
I have 2 middle names becuase my dad insisted on one name and my mom demanded that I also needed a saint's name. On all documents I just use the first name or initial of the first name. I decided a long time ago that it wasn't worth trying to fit both on forms so now I just leave the second off everything. I rarely say my full name unless I'm specifically telling someone my middle name or commenting on how I have two of them.

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June 3rd, 2012, 09:01 PM
irishblessing's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 15,605
DH has two middle names and it hasn't been an issue. I gave our son two middle names as well.

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June 4th, 2012, 08:35 AM
BeamerMarie- Due Jan 2012
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Texas!
Posts: 416
Originally Posted by RoseRed92 View Post
I'm giving my son two middle names, and I've heard from people that have done the same that on driver's licenses and things you can abbreviate.

For instance, my son's name will be Raziel Jeremiah Curtis Matelski. It would be abbreviated as Raziel J. C. Matelski.

Would that be in any way confusing on forms and things?

That is exactly what causes issues in my sector. I do hire for government positions, so I guess we are extra strict (I hires even need federal security clearances). If he came with his ID and SSN not exactly the same to the letter, he would have to go get a new ID before we could start working with him. Since his SSN and Birth Certificate will have full spellings, he would have no valid picture ID in our eyes. But I guess we are the exception, seems many people don't ever run into this issue. The problem does get worse though, if his high school diploma doesn't fully spell both names, or his college transcripts- we would require them reissued since diplomas and transcripts do not have full SSNs on them.
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