Monday, September 12, 2016

Change of heart over a name

A friend of mine is going to give birth to a boy in just a few weeks, and she has no idea what she would like to name her baby.

"Do you have a short list of names that you like?" I asked her.

"Sort of," she said. "I'm kind of hoping to get some inspiration when I see him."

Although my husband and I had our son's name picked out before we went in for the first sonogram, I can understand the pressure: Picking out a name for your child is hard. There are so many questions: What if other people have trouble pronouncing it? Or spelling it? Or what if you accidentally pick a name that is suddenly wildly popular and your child ends up in a class with three other children with the same name?

But all of the trepidation around baby naming is good practice for parenting in general: You go with your gut, and you sometimes still get things wrong.

How wrong? Well, it turns out that one-fifth of UK parents regret the name they chose for their child. The good news is that there is a way to fix that. I am often reminded of my classmate in eighth grade who asked his parents if he could change his name for his birthday (and was granted his wish). Or of all those classmates who I realized went by their middle names when their full names were announced at graduation.

People's preferences change. The important part about baby naming is still the same: Go with your gut.

If you could have changed your name when you were younger, what would you have changed it to? Tell me in the comments.

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