What’s in a name? Well, if you’re looking at the meanings of men’s and women’s names you will find very different things. Themes of strength and dominance related characteristics are prevalent in men’s names meanings. In contrast, women’s names meanings lean toward flowers, physical beauty, positive emotions, and submissive characteristics.
Gopi - Gopi is an extraverted Indian woman. She moved to the US as a child with her parents, her English is perfect and accented. Gopi is in an arranged marriage; she and her husband get along but they are not in love. Gopi lives with her husband’s family and they have one child, a boy. Gopi has a sunny personality and positive outlook on life, she works part time in office administration, and has a degree in business and is passionate about marketing. She does not love her home life, but has her own interests. She appreciates that she can get out frequently, because there are so many family members at home to take care of things and watch her son.
The name Gopi means devoted cow herder of Krishna, aka besotted milkmaid - there were so many times while breastfeeding that I felt that phrase could have described me. I loved the symbolism of this name and thought it would fit in “The Private Life of an American Mom” and for Gopi, who only has position in her family related to her husband and son.
Maria - Maria is the youngest woman in the group. She has three children, two girls and a boy, and is pregnant with her fourth. Her family is conservative Catholic and they do not support birth control. Secretly, she made plans with her doctor to have a C-section for this birth and have her tubes tied. Maria loves her husband and her children; she enjoys being a Mom, but feels trapped. She is aware that she did not have the opportunities available to most of the other women in the group. She takes what many will view as extreme measures to find relief.
The name Maria is prevalent in Western culture and history. It is the most common female name in all Spanish speaking countries. Maria is a Latin form of Mary and means “bitter” or “wished for child.” Mary was the virgin Mother of Christ in the Catholic and Christian religions. Maria is rich in history and the name is found across many cultures.