how do you choose a name?(87 Posts)
where do you start?? i can't think of any name i want.. tell me how you chose your names, maybe i'll get inspired.. thanks
We considered meanings first, and then did some research into the names associated with them until we found ones we liked the sound of.
Others go for popularity (or lack thereof) and others again look for something that sounds nice (irrespective of meaning/popularity).
As soon as you mention you a pregnant everyone seems to have an opinion on their favourite name. Pick a few names from the top 100 names, are their any that you like?
Think of the sound of the name or if you have relatives with good names and if you could imagine calling a child that name forever!
I like short strong names for boys
But longer frillier names for girls
Any of these grab you?
DS - just a name that we both liked , incidentally that was my grandmothers brothers name , I never knew him .
My married name is my Grandmas maiden name , so DS has the same Christian name , and surname !
DD , has my Mums name , I had 2 nephews with my Dads name as a middle name , so we wanted Mums name in there somewhere , if we had a girl .
We did ! and we liked the name .
Mum was Jennifer , always known as Jenny ,
DD is Jennifer Grace , after Mum and Grandma , always known as Jen
Is there anyone among your family or close friends you would like to honour by naming your child after them? Usually a middle name. Can be a very meaningful thing to do. My grandaughter is named for me (her MN), and I really did feel honoured when I was told, it was a lovely thing to do
Or anything other special and important thing you want to commemorate...places, events etc?
Think how many syllables might sound nice with your surname. Any initials you want to avoid because it spells out something rude?
Any theme you want a name to have? Some people want their children to have biblical names, or 'nature' names or old fashioned names etc
Get a long list of names, a baby name book, read this forum and just look for names you really like the sound of for your baby
We did this:
I went through a baby name book from A-Z to select names I liked. That resulted in about 30 girls names and fewer boys names. I then gave the list to DH who highlighted the ones of those he liked enough to be a first name and in a different colour the ones that he liked enough to be a middle name. He only liked 3 boys' names and two of those were related names so we really had the boy's name sorted. We then lived with the list of girls names for a while until one became a clear favourite and we had two to choose from for the middle name. When DD arrived I just looked at DH and said the full name I wanted and he had no desire to argue with me having seen me give birth.
All of the above are great suggestions - we're currently going through it in preparation for DC 2 and I'm grateful for the suggestions.
As a slightly tongue in cheek suggestion just mention you're expecting and everyone and his dog will weigh in with name suggestions, which will give you some additional ideas
I thought about characters in books and films who I admired. I also had a notebook that I'd been writing names I liked in whenever I came across them since about the age of 15, so I dug that out and had a read of it. And I had the obligatory flick through a baby names book. In the end DS was named after a character in one of my favourite books that represents hope (I also like how the name sounds).
We are still deciding... But we looked at family names and both wrote down any names we liked with the reasons. Then we knocked off any we both really disliked - as long as we had a good reason. Added names we liked generally and why. We left it, came back to it, continued to add and ditch. When we had a manageable number (6 girls, 4 boys) we checked out popularity and ditched any in the top 30. That gave us 4 girls, 3 boys. Finally, I checked if there were any 'horrid' characters I knew of for the ones hubby had chosen (mine were mostly from novels with one exception - family name). Now we've a shortlist and we will see when the baby arrives.
For us, the hardest thing was the surname!
We both have olde English surnames, so we decided to pick a classic English name to go with them. We didn't want anything too popular, so we looked at the baby names list for England & Wales the year before and made a shortlist of names outside the top 50.
look here for the lists
After discounting any that sounded weird with our surnames or gave unfortunate initial combinations, we said them out loud again and again, imagined shouting them in Sainsburys and were left with two boys and two girls names. We also looked up the meanings of them and eventually settled on the names we've chosen.
I had lots of lists
Whilst drugged out of my head in the recovery suite after giving birth, DH convinced me to allow him to give DS the name of his beloved and deceased family dog
We then compounded things by giving him the middle name 'Boris' which had been the nickname for the bump during my pregnancy
I have a savings account for the therpay
not commonly used, but pronouncable, spellable and commonly known. no close friends using it; or relatives it was likely to cause policitical issues with. husband's nationality. we both liked it (this was the hardest)
For DS, DP came up with a list, comprising off the wall names from films & books he likes, the manager of his football team and some Scottish names (he's Scottish). He left it to me to work out which was which though!
I meant to come up with my own list, but I read and rejected all the names in 8 baby names books. On reflection I decided I liked one of them, which I'd picked out (but then rejected for a silly reason in retrospect!) which was also on DP's list. I love the name now and couldn't imagine DS being anything else.
Now DD is due in 3 days (eek!). DP has come up with a (silly) made up name he likes and lots of tbh sensible suggestions. None are "the one" for me though. DS's name is Celtic so I'd like DD to have a Celtic name too ideally. Have read and rejected names in only 4 baby names books so far though so maybe there's hope yet! ...
In answer to your OP, I'd say you should:
- think about whether you're happy with a popular or more unusual names (or you may not mind either way!)
- consider whether you want to honour any family members, either with first or middle names and also look up derivatives of their names
- consider whether you want to reflect any particular heritage - yours or DP's - in the names
- perhaps have a go at starting at the meanings of names. When's your baby due? I had a think about Spring names for a while. (e.g. Persephone, Olwen, Freya, Maia, Pascale) Also as it's been snowing here recently I had a think about snow names (e.g. Eira is a Welsh name meaning snow).
- who are your favourite authors / musicians? I've considered Etta as I think it'a lovely name, but also would be great to play DD Etta Fitzgerald's music.
- start a mumsnet thread, which you have
What kinds of names do you / don't you like? Perhaps we can help by coming up with some suggestions? I find it much easier to suggest names for other people's babies than my own
i have a Max,a George,a Tabitha and an Ivor.
i like Posie or Matilda for a girl,not sure abut boys,i like Sebastian.
trawling through baby name blogs
i particularly liked this one
lists of names are categorised to easily find ones that may match your requirements.
for instance i was after something old fashioned but mildly quirky and wasn't concerned with meanings so i loved the 'funky clunky' list
I was looking for family names so looked to grandparents and great grandparents for inspiration. However, when DD was born, the name we chose was of a singer that DH saw on telly when I was pregnant. It's quite an unusual name but very traditional. I wasn't keen at first but DH was really taken with it and it grew on me When she was born, she was in NICU for 24 hours so the meaning ended up being quite apt as it means battle and she battled her way into the world.
nurses were responsible for our first two!
For DD1 we could not agree - I liked frilly names & he liked staid sensible 1960s sort of names
I was having ante-natal tests done at 41 weeks & the nurse suggested Jessica; when it was decided the same day to do a CS that's what she got.
For DD2 we had sort-of decided on Frances for a girl & Samuel for a boy. It ended up being another CS, but under GA, & when I was being wheeled down the paed nurse asked what we'd decided on because she didn't like putting "Baby Surname" on the wrist band, so I told her.
DH saw DD2 before I woke up, & there was the name on the wristband, so he went off & rang everybody thinking I'd taken an executive decision She likes it & it suits her so that's ok.
I wanted unusual so nothing top 20
I wanted short sharp strong names for boys
I wanted names that sounded good together
I didn't care if the name was 'dead common' (popular) acc to my sis. I wanted something that, if shortened, wasn't offensive to me. Also had no undiesirable connections to next door's dog or the nitty kid at school. I prefer old timeless names. It was only once we had registered the boys I found out one of their names means twin and the other he who laughs.
OOOOOO We had soooo many names for girls for both our children, boys however where somewhat or a danger zone. Hubby had names picked out like Mercutio and Sergio!! (big nope) ... my mother finally picked our daughters name, Madelyn lily (after her deceased mother and my grandma) - though spelt differently. My sons was picked because my hubby was in iraq at the time i found out the sex. He was made up to be having a boy and said he had discussed with the lads a strong boys name. They picked Lucas ... and I loved it There are just too many beautiful names about xx
im in exactly the same pickle, took two weeks after 'baby surname' was born for us to decide on a name for her. So im starting early this time 32 weeks early. For us, we have to consider our families accent- some really beautiful dainty names can sound very dull and clanky with the wrong accent.
Try nameberry.com- beware! its vast...
"I've considered Etta as I think it'a lovely name, but also would be great to play DD Etta Fitzgerald's music"
It's Ella Fitgerald.
Did you mean Etta James?
Fitzgerald. (didn't hit the z hard enough)
We choose DDs name by first establishing any 'rules' like themes, family traditions, etc. and discovered DP wanted names that can be shortened, I wanted traditional names. From there we just thought about any traiditonal names with shortenings. got a list of 5 then picked what suited her best when she leapt out my fanny.
Wanted something different but not 'trying too hard'... A well known name but not one commonly used, but still pretty. i like the sound of 'A' names. Also names that end in 'a'. I saw the names of dutch princesses Alexia, Amalia & Ariane. When i told DH he said he liked them all but Amalia was too similar to Amelie (Dd of close friends) Alexia would be called Lexie which he didn't like and he loved Ariane but would prefer it with an 'a' (Ariana) so that was her name
Went with heart... And named dd after a vehicle
It is a nice traditional name but the inspiration was a train
Ha ha KittenOfDoom, yes I mean Etta James.
We had the usual
arguments discussions about names for our twins, and a piece of advice I received (after they'd arrived & we'd chosen) was to put "Sir/Lord/Lady" in front of the name.
I'm happy that our children can join the peerage without embarrassment!
I have an unusual name, so particularly wanted to use a long established traditional names which transcend the centuries. Like William, for example. I then dug back the family tree for a few generations and picked from there - noble relatives as opposed to my rather more promiscuous ones!
I am very pleased with our choices and I think my children are too.
I would say the following:
Pick a name that sounds fine with your surname;
Pick a name which either can't be shortened or, if it can, that you like the short version;
Pick something that sounds ok at 5mths, 15years or 50 years;
Most importantly, remember your child will have to get through to adulthood with this name - there are enough reasons why children get bullied - you don't want your selfishness in choosing some wacky/awful name to be one of them - I think this is particularly true of boys names.
-It has to pass the "beach test"....can I shout it across a beach in my accent without feeling like a fool, or without half the children on the beach turning round. (I love the name Genevieve, but it just doesn't work with a broad Yorkshire accent.)
-I wanted there to be a good chance they'd be the only one in the class, preferably school, but not too off the wall.
-It has to be a real name, not made up.
-For me boys have to have good, solid names, but girls can be more unusual.
DD's name came about after I was googling a place we love and I realised it was used as a name in Cornwall, there were 4 girls with her name in the year she was born, so I'm pretty certain there won't be another in her school. Especially as we aren't in Cornwall.
It could be argued that DD's name fails the 2nd and 3rd reasons above, as it's very unusual and not in any baby name books, but we know it's a real name and it means a lot to us.
DS's name is more common and more traditional, a good solid name but still outside the top 100 boys names in the year he was born.
My daughter has a very unusal name and people are always a bit when they hear she's named after an ancient weapon. My husband loves history and this general in particular which is why we went for her name. We've given her a normal middle name which was named after my husband's... best friend we'll call her. In case she hates her first name and wants something a bit more normal.
I just started making a list of stuff I liked. DH made a spreadsheet. We combined & narrowed from there.
A tip: consider what the initials will be. Our surname initials are FC, so we couldn't go for any names starting with K as then the poor child's initials would be KFC.
With dd1 it was easy. OH had a girls name he had always liked and I had a boys name I had always liked. We both liked each others choices and when dd1 was born luckily she suited her name.
With dd2 it was so hard. The only name we kind of liked didn't suit her, so she was nameless for 2 days. Then I found a name in a book, said it and it really suited her. Phew!! I like the classic names, nothing too .
The only advice I can give is don't panic if the baby arrives and doesn't have a name. Just keep reading name books and there will be one which is just right.
aufaniae - i cant believe your daughter is due in 3 days. I remember you getting your BFP. (I was winkle2 on the conception boards).
You need a name which goes well with your surname, so have a look at name lists and say them out loud, have a couple to go for and then wait until you see your baby - a name with suit them once you see them! Good luck!
hiya twinklestar <waves>
You've got a good memory! And yes it's gone amazingly quickly. How's things?
there's lots of samuels in my family so if I'd had a boy, I'd be expected to call it Samuel.
There are lots of James and Margarets in my family tree as well.
I quite like 'Fergus' which was my gran-in-law's maiden name apparently, but DH and MIL hate it. Not having another kid anyway, so it doesn't matter
Auf - no joy as yet
Good luck with the birth, let us know how it goes.
I wanted a nature name. DH wanted a name he and his family could pronounce (they're German). Which overruled my other wish of wanting a Welsh name!
We then thought a bird would be nice, as it would commemorate the place where we were married and her first home. Wren threw up pronunciation issues so we had Robin and Raven. We picked Robin.
Bugger outside the top 20, I went looking for names outside the top 1500
I wanted uncommon but not unusual, so I went through the Office of National Statistics lists and only looked at names outside of the top 1,500 that I had already heard of. You'd be surprised what names are outside the top 1000.
Got a list of 5 that I liked and ran them by DH in all combinations till we settled on it.
As someone who was given an Irish name that no one outside of Ireland can pronounce (I get very tired of correcting people, spelling it -which doesn't help as its Gaelic and now I stick to Mrs Surname for ease!!) We went with a classic boys name for our ds. We did find it really hard to agree on more than one boys name but had a few girls names. We loved old names like Thea and Cassie or Anna for a girl. One of my friends sat with her husband and each of them wrote down their top 5 names any that made both lists went on a final short list. It is hard though good luck!! ;-)
My DH and I can't even agree how we came up with DS1's name! He says it was his idea but I think my colleague suggested it originally.
But basically we found out the sex, which cut down the arguments a lot! Then we both separately thought about names (looked on threads, name books, Office for National Statistics spreadsheets etc) and threw them at each other until one stuck.
We changed our minds about our original choice at about 6 months, when I found i kept meeting people who'd just called their DS that name, and thought it was becoming too popular for us to use.
We really only had one name (plus one back-up) we could agree on, so that was that. DS2 on his way and so far we're planning on using the "back-up" name we had for DS1 as we've not found any other names we can agree on. No middle names, thankfully, or we'd be spending the entire pregnancy arguing about names!
Both agree it has to be a name that works for an adult man as well as a child, unusual but not too weird, and able to be shouted across a playground without embarrassment.
We decided to reflect my ancestory in the DCs names.
On a more general theme I didn't want names people would shorten, and we also googled potential first name last names to check there was no dodgy history and also made sure the initials didn't have any bad meanings. We also rejected names that were currently very popular and that couldn't be said in an English accent (we're Scottish living in England).
As far as middle names go all the DC have two middle names, one from my family and one from DH's.
People seem very organized about names!making lists and ticking boxes,i just chose mine cus i liked them,didnt matter whether they were popular or not,dh didt get much of a say,wouldnt of chosen one he hated but he wasnt massively keen o any of them but loves them now.
We thought of a few we liked then looked up their meanings. The meanings really helped us to make our final choices.
When we found out we were having a boy we went at 1st with Harvey due to his last name Khetani but we changed our mind and my sister in fact came up with his name my partner said no then but when he went on a baby name search on google came up with his name Kai Nayan Khetani (the same name my sister had said) the middle name is because it is my partners 1st name and his deceased dads too his family actually wanted us to have kumar as all the boys had that as a middle name but imagine having a quarter Indian child with the initials K.K.K not exactly appropriate is it? Hahaha
Don't worry; it'll come to you. And don't pay too much heed to the stats. According to them, we saddled DD with the most popular girl's name of 2011 (she was born in January so we had no way of predicting). I have yet to meet another girl locally with the same name who'll be in her school year. Good luck!
I first saw DS's name on mumsnet, and it remained high on the potential list (it has a similar "feel" to a more common and potentially faddy name that I loved but was worried about it quickly being very dated).
For DC1, there was a tv character from my childhood whose name I loved. It is generally assumed to be an abbreviation, but is a name in its own right and has strong links with our family heritage. For DC2, another name I had seen many years ago, when a very well known ( at the time) 'celebrity' used it for his son. It also has strong connections to our family heritage. DH loved both names. For middle names, DC1 has a family name from DG side, DC2 has my family name.
For girls, we deliberately set out to find names we liked that were associated with family heritage, though choice of middle name was another film/book character's name that we both loved. Never needed the girl's name.
Like resipca we picked out a name for DC#1 which was the most popular in her year - I have yet to know of another child her age or younger with it! And she goes to a nursery of 130+ children so its not as if we don't hear loads of names.
We picked the name for DC#1 as it was a character from a book which ultimately led me down the career path I follow today - DC#2 is due in 8/9 weeks time and although we have an idea for a boys name (family names combined, first name from my side, middle name from DH's family) we are having real problems deciding on a girls name.
So we've decided we will wait until we meet s/he and decide then, I've some ideas (mostly from books) but I think I need to meet baby before I saddle them with a name for life. DC#1's name is perfect (for her) and suits her 100%.
Both times the process went like this:
I suggested loads of names
DH suggested one name
I made more lists of names
DH suggested a name I had previously offered
We both liked it
DH convinced forevermore it was his idea
We really struggled to find a lot of names that we agreed on, that worked with my surname/our accent etc. With DS we had a shortlist of about 8, but realistically only ever one contender (which he is now called). Middle name is after my brother who died a few years ago. With DD, we literally had one first name and one middle name and that was it. Lucky they both suited her!
My top tip: when opening negotiations, don't lead off with your absolute favourite. It will get shot down in flames instantly and never make it back into contention.
<still bitter about Elsa>
I gave DH the top 100 boys names list for 2011 and told him to write down anything he liked or anything else that came to mind. I knew he couldn't cope with more than that and I had already done the same, and my favourites were all in the top 100. He came back with 3. 2 of them were out due to sounding silly with surname and an awkward family association on my side. Luckily #3 was on both our lists, so that was that. Middle names are from family, one each side. Although actually our boy middle names can be found on both sides, nice and easy! For DD he came out with a name after the 20 week scan and we both loved it. I wasn't worried about popularity, just needed to love the name. The right name just seems right!
We looked through the Bible, argued, changed the subject, reassessed, argued, shouted, cried
well, I did, asked for opinions on MN, decided against all the names, checked the Bible again, (repeat x100)... Demanded MN choose a name for us, couldn't reach a consensus so I refused to get out of the bath until DH came up with a solution! He decided we'd try out a few names for a couple of days each. DH v quickly got used to calling him Asher. I had my first worry-free night for weeks!
I wanted something Welsh, but usable and easy to spell/pronounce, because both of us have Welsh family, plus we both have hard to pronounce names and know how hard it can be to live with a difficult name!
We had a boy's name picked out very early on (Dylan - which was handy because we both love Bob Dylan and Dylan Thomas too!). It also means 'son of the sea/waves', which I really love as I'm from the coast.
Girls names - we never decided on one. I drew up a list, OH didn't like any of them. To be honest, I knew we were having a boy from the word go, so I didn't see the point of picking a girl's name!!
We printed off lists of the top 500 girls' and boys' names from our respective countries and went through them individually, then chose from the resulting lists we had of names we both liked.
if i was ever to have children it would be
I hated having to compromise with DH! Everything I suggested he poo pooed, and everything he suggested was horrible . We chose family names for middle names and our second one was named after a trip to the cemetry for inspiration
There was so little we agree on it wasn't an isssue. We had both agreed on Hugo and the midwife when "ugh - he's not a Hugo" so I was lucky I got my first choice and DH's 2nd. For dd it was easier we had sort of agreed on a short list of three with one as a front runner - my grandad phoned and asked if this baby had a name and I said yes she does xxxxx, just like grandma was. Job done. Grandad cried. And dd is the spitting image of the grandma I adored and often have a happy tear when I look at the same adorable blue eyed face and tiny feet and dainty features. (She's nearly 15 btw and still a size 4 - grannie never got beyond 3).
DP has cornish roots, we both really like Wales, and the west of Scotland, Ireland, Brittany so it seemed reasonable to buy a Celtic book. I also bought lots of other books. By the time we went into hospital we had a shortlist of 100 or so with one firm favourite (Naomi). During labour the initial midwife's surname reminded me of a name I quite liked, but wasn't in any of my books.
Day 3 we sat down and narrowed down the shortlist to 4 plus the new name. Put list up over mirror. Day 4 (top tip: do not let the in-laws spend the day with you on day 4) the in-laws took all our time (we took down the list; didn't want their input!). Night 4 above-mentioned midwife was crucial in getting breastfeeding working after lots of angst and dry nappies. Day 5 I just knew, DP came in to hosp, he'd got a favourite too. Luckily we'd both decided we wanted the new name. We were talking the other day how it has been such a good decision. We can't imagine her as a Lucy, Naomi, Joni or Amelie.
So - we ended up with a name that despite being Welsh wasn't in my Celtic name book! And we like that we sort of named her after the midwife.
I would have liked to do something family, but didn't actually like any of the names I knew! In theory I would also have liked to do something with an awesome meaning - mine has a great meaning - but it wasn't to be, and it's not even a shadow of regret in reality, because the name is just so right.
The Bible and historical figures. Kings, queens etc. If you have any familial ties to a particular part of the world that's a useful start, as Downy says.
I never considered popularity really. I went for names that sounded OK with the surname and didn't give stupid initials.
We both agreed that pissing about with the spelling was not on. DH vetoed anything that sounded too wanky and rah. We ended up with solid, classical names.
wrote every name down we liked for months and then about 7 or 8 months pregnant we both marked each others lists and highlighted ones we liked. They sort of lived with the ones with liked, trying the names out on our baby. When he was 6 weeks it was quite clear what suited.
I named my daughter Nevè. I had it picked from about 6 months pregnant. I just thought it was short & classy. It most certainly suits her. I love the name Ruby for a girl too.
That was meant to be Neve
I've had lists of names I liked in teh back of my diary for years. When it came to naming DD I sat down with my husband and showed him the list and he crossed out the ones he really didn't like and left the ones he did. I then went through a few websites and added a few more. We got it down to a shortlist and then did the same for middle names.
Don't be rushed - we took over a week after she was born before we decided as we wanted to be sure we liked the name. Trust us in the end to find a name that is really popular right now (even though it had been on my list for years), but we did go with a different spelling - Emelia - so that it could be shortened to Emmy. Of course she will spend her life correcting people when they spell it wrong, as we're already doing for her.
We also considered the initials to make sure they didn't spell out anything offensive. We did hear horror stories from several people (nurses and the registrar) about names they had encountered - Twin boys named Benson and Hedges, Jenny Taylor (say it quickly).
I personally absolutely love having a name which it is rare to find someone else with. Mine is something anyone can immediately pronounce and it isn't at all out there.
We drew up shortlists of just anything we liked, forgetting popularity or anything else, and then narrowed them down gradually thinking about our criteria. We found we naturally didn't like super popular names or 'out there' names and managed to get the balance with all our DC.
Also thought about our surname, wanted a different start letter and something which went well.
Used middle names for names we liked but decided they were too popular/out there/hard to say or spell.
Oh yes, middle names we also used family members names as it was a tradition in both our families.
I picked DDs name out of a book I loved as a child. In the year she was born, only 13 babies were given her name. So for the next baby Im.considering only looking at names given to 13 babies each year.
Just don't name it after the place where you conceived them i.e. Paris, Brooklyn, etc.
Imagine yourself shouting their names in the supermarket like someone said
Naming DS1 was easy for me, as I was a teenage single mum when I had him, so had no-one else to negotiate with (as his father has never been in the picture). I had said from the first day, a boy would be named Jack after my grandfather, and that is what I named him. (Jack was also my other grandfather's middle name, so it actually managed to honour them both).
When pregnant with DS2, I found it difficult to adjust to having to negotiate with another person over the name, but thankfully DH and I are on the same page when it comes to names.
Anyway, what we did for DS2 is we each made a list of 40 names we liked (20 for each gender), and any duplicates were automatically moved to the 'consideration list'. If my memory serves me right, I think we both liked the same seven boy's names and six girl's names.
With the remaining names, we each had ten vetoes (five for each gender), so with no arguments we automatically struck ten names of the other's lists.
Then we discussed the remaining names, until we could reach agreement on what names to move over to the 'consideration list', given that we only wanted ten names per gender on the list. We got there eventually!
After that, we individually ranked both lists, and we had both placed Alexander as our top boy's name and thus that was the boy's name we chose and what DS2 ended up being named!
We kept the lists for next time, and both of us had listed Sarah as our top girl's name, and we both still loved when we had our third child (DD), so she was named Sarah. No debate needed there.
I'm now pregnant with our fourth (and last) child, who appears to be female in flavour (!), and we're really struggling with a girl's name this time. We both like the same names, but none of them feel right at the moment, and we might just wait until she arrives and see what she suits. If I'm honest, part of me is hoping the sonographer was wrong and that bump is a boy, as we're sorted for a boy (Samuel - the name both of us had ranked second on the list we made for DD2 almost seven years ago).
DH bought me a baby names dictionary, I looked online as well at the meaning of names, thought about family names and what might be meaningful to us, came up with a shortlist of first and middle names. I also thought about people who had those names already and whether it was a positive association. But DH would not discuss until after DDs were born each time, after they were born he picked the names from my short list!
Oh yes, DD1 was born in the Rose Tyler era of Doctor Who. Now, I'm not a massive DW fan though we do watch it but I just thought the name Rose was very nice so it became her middle name. But about 5 million other girls born in the mid noughties also have that middle name- little did I know it would become the Louise of the 2000s.
We have criteria that a name needs to fit:
- it needs to be Jewish/Hebrew (we are, we're not weirdos)
- it needs to work in French and English
- we both have to like it
We have literally spent months going "what about David?" "how does it sound in French?" "no, I don't like that" "but I do. Oh wait, there was that douchey guy I worked with once. David is out"
and so on and so on.
We have a list now of 3 girls and 5 boys names which have gone through this exhaustive process and been approved. Problem is, we can't remember what they are anymore.
Oooh, we have a lot of requirements for names to pass!
requirements for boys names (most of these from DH):
Does it sound like he could be leading out the England Rugby team?
Does it sound like you'd trust him to fix the breaks on your car?
If you were on trial for a murder you didn't commit, unable to afford to hire your own barraster, and heard the name of the one that had been appointed to represent you, would you think "will be home in time for tea" or "it's going to be at least a decade before I sleep in my own bed?"
Remember as much as this will be your little baby, one day some woman will breathlessly say this name in a moment of passion (DH added this one in as well - he argued well that half the names I liked would be passion killers and that I was scuppering my chances of being a grandmother one day)
Does it sound like the CFO of a FTSE 100 company?
Does it sound like the name of a woman in her 30s (not just a cute toddler)?
For both - have you thought about all possible nicknames from it and are you happy with the shortenings? Are there any obvious bullying opportunities with a name? (particularly in combination with your surname) Does it (along with your surname) sound stupid in any particular accents? For middle names, when they are stood at the front of church on their wedding day and say "I [first name, middle name, surname] do take...." will several of their friends who've never known their middle name snigger?
for all names - have you picked a spelling of the name that will force them to spend a lifetime either on the phone to call centres saying "no, without an I, and it's a K not a C. Yes I know it's not the normal spelling" (or similar) or saying "no, I didn't get that e-mail, can I just check the spelling of the address you've sent it too?" (I have an unusual spelling of a common name. Drives me insane)
And, every couple of months I will find some kind of, er, creative name that DH rejects outright because he has no imagination. For e.g., Abisheva (turns out it's a Kazakh surname, but SERMANTICS) for a girl, which would kind of be in Hebrew something like "father's seven" and dH was just all "no, it's too weird, the kid will be teased" about it. Likewise Batsheva. He has no imagination sometimes.
I know a few people who had chosen their perfect name and then when baby arrived, took one look at baby and chose another name as they felt that the original choice didn't suit the child! In all cases, they were right, the 'impulse choice' name does suit the personality of the child much better than the planned one and is very 'them'. So my advice would be to be prepared to change if it seems appropriate.
I looked at the credits on tv shows and films, and wrote down those that I liked. I kept a list on my phone and added everything to it I liked, DH did the same, and we matched & whittled down
Went through loads of family names, trawled through a baby name book and just whittled it down.
We actually started discussing baby names within weeks of starting our relationship, which was 12 years before our first baby came along. <blush>
We each made a list of 10 boys' names and 10 girls' names. Then we swapped and crossed off the names we hated and agreed that I would choose first name for a boy and dh would choose mn. If it was a girl it would be the other way round. Eventually we had one of each and were happy with the names chosen.
I'm afraid our process was more about what we didn't want and seeing what was left:
No initial that was already in the immediate family or a surname. So not the same initial as my name, dp's name, or either surname. I had the same initial as my grandfather who lived with us when I was a teenager and post was often addressed to t defrance (no mr/miss) so he often opened my post.
No name that was already in use by our generation of the family or friends - brothers, sisters, bils, sils, cousins.
Pronouncable by foreign friends / family (French in my case)
For girls - no girls version of boys names (eg Louisa) or anything too flowery. Actually any girls name ending in a. Our girls list was pretty short!
Something long that could be shortened if wished. DS1 now goes by 2 different shortenings neither of which occured to us when choosing the name and does not like to be called by the long version, but at least has the option when he grows up if need be.
Only one spelling - so Isabel/Isabelle/Isobel and Catherine/Katherine/Kathryn were rejected
Not in the top 50 - managed this with DS1, DS2 is in the 40s somewhere I think. My name is pretty unique in this country and I like that. But agree with pp's saying boys names need to be more traditional.
No negative associations, eg I liked Michael but DP knew someone at work who he didn't like. I imagine this is very difficult for teachers.
I think that was it!! In the end DS1's name was a character in a film I saw when pregnant. DS2's had been on the shortlist for DS1 and we hadn't had any better ideas (or none we could agree on!)
Wow tourdefrance, would love to know what names you ended up with!
Our final shortlist was 3 of each, not 10 that other people have mentioned.
Well I don't want to out myself with the final choices, but for girls we had Miriam, Jennifer and can't remember the 3rd. For boys our 'leftover' names were Philip and Paul.
We asked everyonr to donate two names which we added to our long list. There were some duplications but a decent selection of names. Once dd was born we tried ouy the names with our chosen middle names & surname. we discarded the ones that didnt go & were left with 5 names which we voted on. It was a choice between Eva & our dds eventual name. Eva was rejected because it had been used by my cousin.
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