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‘I have never met anyone called Fiadh in Australia’

Fiadh Molloy’s name may cause her problems in Australia, but she loves it because it connects her to Ireland

Over the last few years, it has been interesting for me that the name Fiadh has become so popular in Ireland. (In March, a Central Statistics Office report listed Fiadh as the most popular name in Irish for girls born in 2023).

I am a 12-year-old Fiadh, who has lived my whole life in Australia. I live in a small town on the south coast of New South Wales and I have just started high school.

It is good to see more people being called Fiadh because, one day, there will be more people called Fiadh in Australia. There will also be more things, such as key chains and brushes with the name Fiadh on it. Growing up in Australia, I could never get things with my name on it.

I have never met anyone with my first name in Australia, it’s very rare here. I do meet Fiadhs, though, when I travel to Ireland.


My parents are from Dublin. Both moved to Australia in 2004 after backpacking around the world. Apart from mum, dad and my brother and sister, all my family – grandparents and cousins – are in Ireland.

All I know is I was called Fiadh after a weaver from Dingle in Co Kerry. My aunt liked her name, and my parents liked it when they heard it from her. So, in 2011, when I was born in Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney, they called me Fiadh.

This has made my life challenging from the beginning. My parents tell me from the day I was born that they constantly had to explain the name to Australians. They were very confused about the “dh”. In year two of primary school, I even wanted to change my name and pay the money of $180 (€110) to change it to “Fia”. This was because my name in school was “I need a little help here”, “fee-ad” or “f-i-a-d-h” (spelt out).

Sometimes, it was even skipped during the roll.

My friends became used to the fact that every time we had a substitute teacher, they would need to correct the pronunciation of my name.

There was a teacher in kindergarten who researched my name before class and was able to pronounce it, making me feel happy. My nippers cap [used in water activities] has “Fia” on it, so people can call me by my name without a struggle.

Despite all this, I love my name, because it is unique where I live and connects me to Ireland.

  • Fiadh Molloy’s mother, Sinéad, is from Stillorgan and father, Luke, is from Clontarf in Dublin. They live in Thirroul, a small, coastal town south of Sydney in New South Wales, Australia.
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