What is Matt Lauer’s son’s name? Say again (update)

Matt Lauer and his wife, Annette Roque, picked a Dutch name for their son born yesterday, Tjis Thijs

Wouldn’t you assume that’s pronounced Tuh-Jiss? It’s said to be pronounced “tice,” similar to “lice.” Oh that kid is not going to be made fun of or anything:

So we rolled our eyes at “Apple” and raised our eyebrows at “Suri” and “Shiloh.” But now “Thijs”? That, folks, is the newest addition to the Matt Lauer – Annette Roque brood, according to People. The baby (a son) was born yesterday morning, and weighed 7 lbs., 4 oz., and parents and child are doing well. The name is pronounced “Tice” and is a common Dutch name (Roque is Dutch). The baby will join brother Jack and sister Romy in the household, though the child is surely already girding himself for a lifetime of frustrating and humiliating trips to the DMV and the dentist’s office.

Maybe he’ll be spared some humiliation with a nickname. It must have been the mother’s idea since she’s Dutch, and I’m sorry if I’m making fun of a name that’s super-common in the Netherlands. It does sound like a nice name, but every substitute teacher is going to be struggling with the pronunciation. It doesn’t seem suited to an American kid, but to each his own.

Lauer and his wife have two other children with rather common names in comparison: a son, Jack Matthew, 5, and a daughter, Romy, 3. Matt and Roque were separated last summer but have since reconciled.

All right you guys, I hear you. I left out the H by mistake, and you’re right that I have no knowledge of the Dutch alphabet. Best wishes to the Lauers and little Thijs and apologies to our Dutch readers and anyone else who was offended. It’s not as weird a name as Fifi Trixibelle or Apple, that’s true.

“John,” “JoAnna” “Sarah” and “Sirio” below all have the same IP and are all the same person.

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21 Responses to “What is Matt Lauer’s son’s name? Say again (update)”

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  1. dietrich says:

    I feel for the kid. Try growing up outside of Germany with the name Dietrich, or even worse … Dieter for short.

  2. clarimonde says:

    I suffer from a being an American saddled with a stupid German name nobody can pronounce as well. School was hell.

    Poor kid.

  3. millie says:

    They already have two kids with American names.. I don’t blame Annette for wanting to have a child with a Dutch name. My kids have American names (my husband is American) and I always get shit from my friends (and strangers) back home for that. Nobody would expect Americans living abroad to give their kids German or Swedish names and yet it’s always expected when the kid is born in the U.S. to foreign parents. Tijs is a regular name and it sounds fine to me-you can’t compare it to Apple or Pilot Inspector. I think Annette gave in to pressure with the first two kids but now she’s reclaiming her own heritage. I’d do exactly the same if I had another one.

  4. AC says:

    I like the name but … and i know this sucks but maybe they could have spelled it less traditionally to make it easier? I guess if I were dutch i wouldn’t want to change it… but still.

  5. Viv says:

    Hmm, I wonder if the kid has a normal middle name like Fred that he call fall back on? For my daughter, I gave her a Chinese name that sounds American for her middle name (May= beautiful) just to keep our heritage. Additionally, her intials spell AMY.

    What I don’t understand is why the little one gets a name like that and his siblings don’t?

  6. Sirio says:

    It’s Tijs not Tjis. Tjis would be pronounced Cheese. Get a clue.

  7. Sarah says:

    What exactly is the problem, the fact that he respects his wife’s heritage with a name that is perfectly normal and people will be perfectly able to pronounce (they don’t all spell or pronounce like you) or the fact that you think “American” (and what exactly would that be) names are the only ones cool enough in our multi-cultural country?
    Where are you from, the boondocks?

  8. Joanna says:

    Girlfriend’s a xenophobe. Need anyone to spell or pronounce that for you?

  9. John says:

    You really don’t have a clue do you? Ms Roque is Dutch, but the surname certainly isn’t.
    Is there anything in your ignorant post that’s possibly right?

  10. millie says:

    OK, here is the spelling according to People mag plus a short note about the birth:

    “Matt Lauer and wife Annette welcomed their third child, a son named Thijs, on Tuesday.

    “The baby was born this morning at 9:37 a.m. in New York City. He weighed 7 lbs., 4 oz.,” Today spokesperson Megan Kopf tells PEOPLE. “Mom, Dad and baby are all doing well.”

    The baby’s unusual name (pronounced “Tice”) is a common Dutch name. “Annette is Dutch and in following with her heritage, the baby was given a Dutch name,” says a source.

    This is the third child for the Today anchor, 48, and his wife, 41. Thijs joins brother Jack, 5, and sister Romy, 3″

  11. Keri says:

    Len —

    It’s not fair to be critical because an American doesn’t know the Dutch alphabet. Can you spell “Iraq” in Arabic? No? So should I consider you ignorant and uneducated?

    Anyway, most Americans will not be able to spell or pronounce Thijs properly, so he will have to deal with a lifetime of annoying questions and repeated spelling-outs.

    Kids can be very cruel to each other, and unusual names just makes this easier. The “American” name Jack, though, also lends itself to teasing: “Cracker Jack; Jack-in-the-Box; Where’s your bucket of water?” etc. Will Thijs necessarily have it any worse? It’s hard to avoid naming a kid something that other kids won’t easily twist into a taunt.

  12. Celebitchy says:

    Keri, that reminds me of that Saturday Night Live skit from about 10(?) years ago with the guest host twisting potential kids names into really far out taunts. I wanted to add that to the post, but I don’t know enough details to make it relevant.

  13. mysterious says:

    please people. I am dutch, and we dont run around making fun of North american first names…and yes celebitchy.. you can be a little ignorant and rude for a person who has married a foreigner. (and living in switzerland I might add). …. ignorance and intolerance is what started iraq/irak/العراق
    and other countries in the first place… can’t we all just get along????

  14. dietrich says:

    Take it from one who knows… American children aren’t as “enlightened” as all of you apparently are. This kid will be made fun of due to his name, period.

  15. alabamapink says:

    I named my child something slightly out of the ordinary for this country: Alastair. For some bizarre reason no one (even family) seems to be able to pronounce it correctly. We get either “AH-La-Stair” or “A-La-STAIR”. I guess that’s why we gave him two middle names to go by if he gets sick of the butchering of his name.

    Celebrity kids will never have a “normal” childhood like the rest of us. I am guessing it is for that reason that the famous choose to bestow such unusual monikers on their offspring. Remember Grace Slick named her daugher “god” (and then later changed the name to something slightly more conventional)?

    For all we know the newest Lauer will attend a posh private school where his parents will pay dearly to ensure his name is never mispronounced. OR he’ll just attend a boarding school in Europe where everyone is multilingual and enlighted as to the correct way to pronounce names in all languages.

    I went to elementary school with a Siani and a Nashua. Sub teachers always butchered their names.

  16. mysterious says:

    Dietrich…you’ll get over it… and…they have therapy for people with menial issues like yourself.
    and … 411… i grew up in north america with dutch names and still managed to survive.

  17. dietrich says:

    Oh, I survived. The point here is that the kid will be made fun of. I don’t go around whining about my name, but it is kind of related to this post. Get off your high horse and save your sarcastic BS for somebody else. Just where in North America did you grow up ? Canada ? By the way … 411… people don’t say 411 anymore. Do you use LOL too ? Thanks for the useless advice.

  18. Terri says:

    Whoa…I feel like I stumbled upon a fight between second graders:

    “You’re stupid!”

    “No, you’re stupid!”

    “Well, you’re stupider!”

    Geez… 😉

  19. chic mommy says:

    I actually wish my parents had named me something easy to pronounce. Having a foreign sounding name while growing up in Smalltown, U.S.A. wasn’t easy. Everytime some substitute teacher came in and took attendance, she would pause for a moment before she butchered my name. After a while I would just beat her to the punch and say, “I’m here.”

  20. Kristen says:

    I find the name is growing on me. The spelling is impossible for English-speakers, it’s true, but the pronunciation is pleasing. I think if they had spelled it Tyce, no one would have blinked. The negative reactions are mostly because we who live in the United States know that there is no chance of anyone ever knowing how to pronounce it, and that’s a little tough on the kid–though certainly not something that will ruin his life.

    My surname is Dutch, with a ‘y’ in it that used to be an ‘ij’–some ancestor changed it after coming to the U.S., because the ‘ij’ pronounced as ‘y’ doesn’t make sense here. I think it’s reasonable to make either decision: either to decide to take on the hassle of having to explain your name every single time, or to decide to modify the spelling to suit the local alphabet. I think of it more as “translating” the name, rather than changing it.

  21. aimee says:

    okay i think almost everyone on this page is in someway wrong i believe that if a person wants to name there child something from a different culture they should be able to no one should have to be patranized or objectified in anyway, and i also believe that someone from a different culture may get made fun of or questioned alot but its no big deal i have a very french name with many different middle names but i actually didnt get questioned alot, i believe that with such an easy name like thijs that he will have no problems.!

    okay and, Len you saying all of the things you did made you sound more ‘un educated’, then everyone on this page by saying that, just because someone can’t pronounce something Dutch does not make them un educated it makes them normal, because the truth is most people can only speak 1-3 languages and it usually isn’t dutch because that is not a language that is used alot, so i would appreciarted it you went and got educated on the fact that everyone is different and all speak different languages.