This is backed up by a new study in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, which analyzed 358 million baby names in the US Social Security Administration database.
“The tendency to want your kids to stand out is even more pronounced now than it was 10 years ago,” psychology professor Jean Twenge tells TIME. She credits millennial parents shying away from the typical to the fact they were raised in an individualistic culture that focuses on the self and is not as concerned with social rules as generations that came before.
“They were raised with phrases like, 'You shouldn’t care what anyone else thinks of you,' 'You can be anything you want to be,' 'It’s good to be different,' 'You have to love yourself first before you love anyone else,'” she says.
Between 2004 and 2006, 66 percent of boys and 76 percent of girls had names not on the list of the 50 most common at the time. Between 2011 and 2015, those numbers went up to 72 percent for boys and 79 percent for girls.
In their search for the unique, millennials are turning to pop culture for baby-name inspiration. “People are interested in fame and celebrity and these types of values instead of, for example, getting involved in the community,” Twenge explains.
“Boys are still more likely to get a common name than girls,” she says. “But parents are now more willing to give boys unique names as well.” This explains the little boy named Kale I met when I was at the park with my best friend and her son.
Basically, if I were born today, it's very unlikely I would be named Sara. It's much more probable I'd be called Furiosa Nachlis, Kardashian Nachlis, or Harambe Nachlis. Which, now that I think about it, would be pretty cool. Do you, millennials.