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How do you compromise on baby names?

(139 Posts)
BraveLilBear Tue 09-Jul-13 13:25:37

Hello - I'm looking for some un-hormonally fuelled perspective please!

We're still undecided on my/our first child's name (DP has 11yo son already), and at 38 weeks plus twinges, time is running out. My DP has set his heart on a particular name for a boy. It's old English and means 'intelligent', but is more commonly known as a surname, or a place name in the USA and in the north of England.

It doesn't feel right to me at all, and given that DP is also refusing to let baby have my surname as an additional middle name (tho has conceded to let it have one of my family first names as a middle name), it just doesn't feel right to me at all - I imagined going to the doctors and having my child's name called and it would feel like it wasn't my child.

The name is ok, but I think it sounds a bit daft and is too 'big' a name to hang on a newborn who has to get through primary and secondary school intact. If it wanted to be a lawyer, journalist, doctor etc it would sound great, but I worry it'll have a negative experience in childhood that would stop it wanting to achieve IYSWIM.

Thing is, DP is exceptionally stubborn and is also very selfish. I can't use the name here because he'll be able to ID me.

Every alternative I suggest, he hates, or at least says he does.

It's getting to the point now that I'm dreading my child being a boy - because I don't want the fight that will be inevitable.

I absolutely love the name we have in mind for a girl - now he's saying he'll only 'let me' name her that if I agree to the boy's name he likes.


CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 09-Jul-13 13:29:41

Sorry, can't help you. I told everyone what DS's name was - his Dad included - and that was the end of the conversation.

tigerellatomato Tue 09-Jul-13 13:35:07

This is ridiculous. You can't give your child a name one of your hates. This is for life - s/he isn't a puppy! You asked how you compromise - you choose a name BOTH of you like. I do know someone who announced the name of her son, then changed his name within the week as she just couldn't get used to it - and this was a name she liked. I suppose what I'm saying is that if you really hate this name, you probably will never like it, so act now and act decisively.

Boosterseat Tue 09-Jul-13 13:40:21

I was going to say can you compromise as a middle name but as you described him as stubborn and selfish hmm

Tell him you hate the name, and it’s not going to happen.

"let you" fuck that - who the hell does he think he is?

Sorry he sounds like a cock and that you have bigger issues than the name here

Agree with Cognito - I carried him for 9 months and had a hell of a job getting him into the world, there is no one on earth that could have forced me to pick a name i didn’t want.

In fact, i would be inclined to pick something he hated just to really piss him off but then again I have been described as confrontational once or twice.

Congratulations on the pregnancy .

youaintallthat Tue 09-Jul-13 13:43:49

Sorry but I'd tell him you choose a name you equally like or you'll pick one it and register ds yourself. If my hubby had tried to bully me into giving our dc a name he knew I hated of have told him where to go.
As it happens we couldn't decide on a name we both liked for ages months on end then sh suggested one I'd have never thought of and I instantly loved it.
My ds also had my maiden name as middle. This is both your baby why does you dp get to dictate everything?

With the help of google, I think I've worked out what name you mean ... and I agree with you - I would hate my child to be called it. Personally, given that he is your 'DP' not your 'DH' I would inform him that the baby will have YOUR surname not his (even if you don't mind him/her having DP's surname) as it will form a basis for meaningful negotiation, i.e. you are prepared to compromise on the surname if he is prepared to compromise on the first name.

He sounds like a controlling arse tbh

themaltesecat Tue 09-Jul-13 13:45:44

Mothers definitely have naming rights.

Tell the prick to wind his neck in. Note, even if the sneaky bastard did go and register his awful name while you were laid up in hospital, you have up to a year to change it to something else.

What's the name? Ethelred?

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Tue 09-Jul-13 13:47:28

Umm he sounds domineering OP. Has he laid down the law about other things?

themaltesecat Tue 09-Jul-13 13:47:35

EachandEvery is right. The presumption is that the baby will carry your surname if you are unmarried. That would be my starting point in "negotiations." I don't negotiate with twats, though.

WhiteBirdBlueSky Tue 09-Jul-13 13:48:42

I think you've got bigger problems than the naming.

Oh bloody hell! I've found it by googling too. No way!

I agree with all the other posters. Tell him that the baby will be taking your surname - and then actually do it. Do you want the baby to have a different name to you?

SJisontheway Tue 09-Jul-13 14:07:14

Put your foot down. Tell him you will not under any circumstances be giving the baby a name you hate. Start again. Draw up a list each and see if there is a name you can both agree on. He does sound like an arse.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 14:15:08

OP, he sounds really horrible.

You are the baby's mother and you are not married to the baby's father, so actually he has no right to choose the surname never mind the first name.

Does he have grandiose leanings otherwise?

Is he a bully?

Is he the love of your life?

MysteriousHamster Tue 09-Jul-13 14:17:20

Why does he get to be in charge of whose surnames go to the baby and in what position etc? You're not married and he's not trying to compromise at all.

You find a name you both like or tell him the baby will have your surname. Otherwise, if you never get married, you will never have the same name as your child.

My not-quite-sisterin-law gave my niece my brother's surname so they'd all have the same name one day - after getting married. Six years later, they're together, but still not married and about to have another child, which also won't get her name.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 14:18:21

Can someone please PM me the name?

Once the name as well goes on the birth certificate, that detail cannot be changed.

You describe your man as both stubborn and selfish; I daresay he is the same in all the other areas of your relationship as well. The name he is suggesting is downright cruel actually to inflict on a child in any case; your man is a bully exerting power and control here.

I did wonder why on earth are you together at all?. This is the undermining thought I had when reading your post, the name he wants is just the tip of a bloody big iceberg.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 14:19:03

OP, just out of interest, is he reluctant to get married?

MarianneBrandon Tue 09-Jul-13 14:23:05

I have also looked on Google and I think the name would be okay for an adult but would be a big name for a baby and an embarrassment for a child in school.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 14:26:27

No. Just no.

Thinking about it, I agree with Baroness that the baby should have your surname full stop. If he argues that that's pointless because you will be getting married at some indeterminate point in the future, tell him that at that point the child's surname can easily be changed by deed poll.

I definitely wouldn't do it now though.

Is it just the name he's being an arse about, or is it a general thing?

Mixxy Tue 09-Jul-13 14:27:31

Father sounds like an arse. Not married? Call the baby whatever you like and give him your surname too.

If you want to comprimise tell him: your last name, my choice first name and middle name.

DontmindifIdo Tue 09-Jul-13 14:31:03

As you say DP not DH, have you pointed out that as an unmarried mother, only you get to register the baby so it's your choice that matters and you wo'nt be naming the DC that name so he's going to have to discuss other options with you. (perhaps give him a list of names you like and tell him he can pick from that)

But then, he sounds like a right wanker, is he like this with other stuff?

MysteriousHamster Tue 09-Jul-13 14:31:23

That little baby is not going to look like that name when he's born (if he's a he) - just found it.

How is the relationship generally, OP?

TurnipCake Tue 09-Jul-13 14:34:43

Your partner doesn't sound very nice, OP. Come hell or high water I certainly wouldn't be giving the baby his surname.

Mixxy Tue 09-Jul-13 14:37:53

Just googled the name. When I was in school we had a class pet, a bearded dragon, of the same name.

Put your foot down and we'll all pray for a girl.

BerkshireMum Tue 09-Jul-13 14:40:47

You can only compromise if you both want to!

As you're not married you register the birth and he is only named if he goes with you. I like the idea of the "compromise" being his surname, your choice of first names.

Seriously though, this wasn't really a message about compromising on names - took me and DH 8 & 3/4 months to do that - it's about control. If it is as bad as it sounds with the words you've used then think hard - if you don't make a stand now it won't get better!

In the end, my MiL suggested a name that we both thought the other had vetoed. Result!

TalkativeJim Tue 09-Jul-13 14:41:28

Forget about the first name: my advice would be to give this baby your surname. I've seen countless posts by mothers who regret getting bullied into giving their babies the surname of controlling, nasty little pricks who (surprise, surprise) they then separated from.

As you're not married, he can't 'let' you do anything, thank God. In fact, he can't even go ON the birth certificate without your say-so and can't register the birth-you have to, he can't do it without you.

So when you say 'let' , you mean he will get his way by bullying, because legally, YOU are the one who gets to decide.

You have bigger problems than the name, as everyone else has indicated. Why is he not with the mother of his other child? Are they amicable?

Think ahead. And remember, if you give the baby your surname now, it can always be changed: to his, IF you marry, or to any new name you and your baby's siblings might have in the future. Give it his, and it's out of your power, no matter whether you stay with him or not.

He sounds a nasty piece of work.

The very fact that you've posted this in 'relationships' rather than something like 'baby names' suggests that there are issues ... care to elaborate Bear?

I have sympathy ... it's hard to be strong when you're so late in your pregnancy - but you must be. Don't let him bully you - I know you don't want to post the name on here, but throw the name amongst family and friends - maybe their general incredulity at his pompousness and pretentiousness will shame him into conceding.

CissyMeldrum Tue 09-Jul-13 14:44:01

No no no , you can't inflict that name upon a baby, there is no way you can shorten it to a cute nickname either, as someone said before you have probably got bigger problems than the name tbh.
You are not married so can name the baby whatever you like . Good luck.

TeamEdward Tue 09-Jul-13 14:46:03

How do you compromise on naming a baby?

DH: I like the name X
Me: Push 9lb of screaming, wriggling small person out of your hoohah and you get to name it X.

margaritadrakeina Tue 09-Jul-13 14:49:44

No, don't give the baby a name you hate. I have just realised DC2 doesn't answer to her given name on the rare occasions when I use it. She only answers to a nickname. I regret not having resisted, but like yours my DH said he hated every name I suggested and just repeated one of two names back at me. One I detested even more and DC2's name.

EagleRay Tue 09-Jul-13 14:56:39

Totally agree teamedward

DD has a pretty unusual name, which was my first choice. Vetoed by DP but he caved in on the deadline date for registering after failing to come up with any alternatives and agreed eventually that I should have the final say as I had the stitches. She's got his surname as mine is rubbish but it was a good negotiation tool

BraveLilBear Tue 09-Jul-13 15:06:39

I'm impressed by some of the googling going on here! Thanks for all your thoughts.

I honestly don't have an issue with his surname - my surname is ubiquitous, his is much less usual, and whatever happens, he'll always be the father. I would, though, like my name recognised in the middle, if only to swerve practical issues such as customs etc prior to us getting married.

He blocked this because he thinks 'it'll end up being double-barrelled'. There are issues at play here - his son was double-barrelled, but used his surname. After they split up, his son's mother changed his name to hers only meaning the son now shares a name with no-one (mum married someone else and they have other kids together).

We have plans to marry in a few years but opted for kids first because of money - and the fact we're in our 30s so didn't know how long it would take to get this far. Having said that, he won't propose yet because he 'doesn't like long engagements'.

Other than this, we work well together - we have fun together and (when I'm not pregnant) enjoy getting out and doing active stuff together. He's a good father and I love him a lot - but he is controlling... he'll frequently quiz me about who I've commented on on Facebook and then get mad at me for not remembering (we're talking public messages, usually as in-depth as congratulations or a shared opinion).

I know this is a significant problem, and there are other problems too - but a relationship only needs to be 51% good to make it worthwhile, and it's easily that.

My issue is with the naming issue is that I have no bargaining chips here - he simply won't negotiate for fear of being manipulated. Ironic, huh.

A relationship only needs to be 51% to make it worthwhile? That's one of the saddest things I've read on here. He sounds like a complete arse to me and I don't know why you would want to stay with a complete arse?

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 15:13:07

You are not married.
You can go and register the child without him and give it any name you want.
He can't register it without you.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 15:14:50

Me naming DS:

I want Dxxxxx.

He proposes Y, Z, W - I say no to all.

DS is called Dxxxxx.

BraveLilBear Tue 09-Jul-13 15:26:07

Lweji I thought you both had to be there if you're not married, either way. Didn't know I could go alone.

Re the 51% thing - no relationship can be perfect, but if the good stuff outweighs the bad stuff then it's worth sticking with. We're at better than that (most of the time) so my attitude is to stick with it. Now I'm carrying our child, a much longed-for child by both of us, my own stubbornness has kicked into gear.

I've had to do a lot of defending of him since we got together - he can be antisocial ie doesn't like meeting people he doesn't know/like inc my family - and will be actively rude on occasions eg kept checking his phone during an antenatal class. I defended him because I know he's a better person than he comes across. I really really don't want to have to stand up and say I screwed up - especially not now we have a child arriving any day now.

I just want him to realise how sad it makes me when he's so domineering, but he'll say what he always says 'if you don't like it, pack your bags' - he never wants to try make things better.

I'm such a fool.

And what will you do when he's just as domineering and bullying toward your DC? Watching someone bully a two year old will break your heart. You might put up with it yourself but when he does it to someone you love, you'll learn to hate him.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 15:34:38

He tells you to pack your bags!

Oh god, OP, I hate saying this as you are in such a vulnerable situation (being pregnant) but he really is as he comes across.

hevak Tue 09-Jul-13 15:35:38

Have you thought about relationship counselling? Or any counselling at all? Definitely do not let him force you to accept a name for your child which you hate. I have figured the name out through google as well, and I agree that it's awful very unusual and likely to be a source of embarrassment and bullying to the poor child as he's growing up. Good luck.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 09-Jul-13 15:37:19

Oh you poor woman. What would you tell your best and closest friend if she told you the following about her own husband/partner?

he is controlling... he'll frequently quiz me about who I've commented on on Facebook and then get mad at me for not remembering (we're talking public messages, usually as in-depth as congratulations or a shared opinion).

I know this is a significant problem, and there are other problems too

I've had to do a lot of defending of him since we got together - he can be antisocial ie doesn't like meeting people he doesn't know/like inc my family

I just want him to realise how sad it makes me when he's so domineering, but he'll say what he always says 'if you don't like it, pack your bags'

he never wants to try make things better.

hevak Tue 09-Jul-13 15:39:21

He does sound awful. I'm trying to give him the benefit of the doubt and not jump on the LTB bandwagon even though I feel like throwing you on the wagon myself! but I think you need to prepare yourself that this relationship is unlikely to go the distance - and prepare yourself accordingly

LieweHeksie Tue 09-Jul-13 15:41:14

"but a relationship only needs to be 51% good to make it worthwhile"

That is so utterly depressing sad

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 15:41:58

If you want to name him as the father he needs to be there.

As things are, you (and your child) may be better off if he is not named...

DorisIsWaiting Tue 09-Jul-13 15:44:23

He's not going to change with the birth of your child if anything he will get worse and worse and socially isolate you and he will have a bigger metaphorical (hopefully that's all) stick to beat you with -your child. He's not a better person than he comes across - that's who he truly is.

Standing up and saying i screwed up is sometimes one of the best things you can do. However I don't think you're anywhere near that point atm but I do think you would benefit on some background reading on abusive relationships, as I think sometime in the not too distant future you may well appreciate it is not you that is mad.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 09-Jul-13 15:47:45
Mixxy Tue 09-Jul-13 15:50:56

You don't need a barganing chip. You are the mother. You are the house and the house always wins.

If he doesn't like long engagements tell him a city hall wedding next week will do fine until the larger "party" in a few years time.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 15:52:54

In fact, I'd put off marrying him, but make sure you are not making yourself more vulnerable.
If you have a job, don't leave.

Mixxy Tue 09-Jul-13 15:52:58

"He doesn't like meeting people he doesn't like". Eh, how does he know he doesn't like them if he never met them? Sounds like he doesnt like them because they like you. He's isolating you already.

WhatWouldBeyonceDo Tue 09-Jul-13 16:01:45

It's never too late to say you made a mistake.

I realised at roughly the same stage as you. And 5 years on I'm fine, and most importantly DS is fine.
It's hard when you are in the situation as it feels like such an enormous desision.
And it is hard and things will change, and then you will wonder why you stuck around and took it for so long.

I wish you all the best.

And can someone please pm me this name, my googling skills are lacking blush

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Tue 09-Jul-13 16:10:18

51% just leaps out and it seems a poor figure to be satisfied with but even if that is enough for you now, is that going to be sufficient when you have a baby to consider? If you are being pushed around metaphorically now, a couple of years of broken sleep and raising a baby into toddlerdom/childhood will sap your spare energy for confrontation. Giving in for a quiet life can tell a bully all they need to do is stamp and shout to get someone to STFU.

Don't let pride stop you from exercising your right to reach out to rl support.

TalkativeJim Tue 09-Jul-13 16:11:13

You have no bargaining chips?! What on earth do you mean?

You are the only person eligible to register your baby.

It's up to YOU.

You don't need 'bargaining chips'!!

'No, I'm not willing to call my baby that.'

'Im happy for the baby to have your surname, and I'm going to put mine in as a second middle name.'

It's easy, unless of course you're in what's increasingly sounding like a very worrying relationship. 51% good is good enough? I can't tell you how many reasons there are for that not being the case. Especially when there are children involved.

BraveLilBear Tue 09-Jul-13 16:13:28

If it was someone else, I'd ask them if he'd be willing to change.

If I left I don't know what I'd do. I live 150miles away from family and I couldn't afford to live alone again... rent and bills would up my outgoings by 650 a month compared to current mortgage. I wouldn't be able to go back to work (childcare will be 700 a month).

I think it's still salvageable, but it depends on if he wants it or not.

Will look at that book somehow... Thanks for the tip.

TalkativeJim Tue 09-Jul-13 16:15:25

Just read your last post.


I think you know you want to.

They're never a better person than they 'come across'. In fact, away from the critical eye of strangers and ESPECIALLY those who care about you, they're a million times worse. Why do you think he wants you isolated from them?


And register your baby yourself.

MysteriousHamster Tue 09-Jul-13 16:21:12

This must all be very hard to read OP, especially so close to your birth date.

If nothing else, when you give birth, say 'oh it's little Ben or William, or Joe' or whatever it is that YOU like, when you are holding your child for the first time, and see if he still argues after a long, hard labour (obviously will hope it's a short, easy one for you!).

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 16:21:29

OP, do something for me? Go onto this website and calculate what you'd have if you did live alone. Factor in average rental in the area you would live in if you two did split up.

You may not be ready to do this now but I think you will be one day.

You know something - not allowing a mother to name her child is removing one of her most fundamental rights. That is not the act of a kind and thoughtful man.

When couples think of names, lots of daft ones get thrown into the mix. Most people compromise if they have to and grow to love the name. He isn't prepared to do any of that - even a middle name. He is trying to remove your right to choose a name and to have your own name as part of your child's name, even though legally he has no right whatsoever to make the child have his surname.

He is really, really unfair and incredibly selfish. And when someone is unfair and selfish I wonder what they would be like when things get tough, when the baby won't sleep and you have mastitis. When the washing machine breaks and floods and you're absolutely knackered. When you ask them to stay in because you're feeling low.

Prepare yourself. Think of it like a seatbelt or an oxygen mask on a plane. You hope you won't need them but when the day comes that you do, you will be so grateful you were prepared.

MysteriousHamster Tue 09-Jul-13 16:21:43

It's only salvageable if he realises he's being an arse :/

WhatWouldBeyonceDo Tue 09-Jul-13 16:22:17

Is there anyway you could leave one day when he's at work. And go back and live with your family while you are on maternity leave? Try to find another job while you are there? Maybe your family could provide some childcare. You will get tax credits etc.

HolidayArmadillo Tue 09-Jul-13 16:27:04

Does it begin with a W? If so there is no way a baby can pull that off. There's not even a pleasant sounding nickname that could be derived from it. Tell him to cock right off.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 16:29:19

How do you get on with your family, OP? What do they think of him?

SnookyPooky Tue 09-Jul-13 16:34:32

I got it by Googling too, no, no never. Not suitable at all.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 16:41:53

There seems to be two names going around, Snooky. Neither is suitable!

HotDAMNlifeisgood Tue 09-Jul-13 16:54:20

The name is hardly the issue, though. It's his controlling behaviour, and the beliefs he holds that underpin that behaviour.

The name he is proposing is just the tip of a bloody great iceberg and you will hate yourself forever if you give in and saddle this child with such a name. It will also remind you of this bloke too after you leave him.

It is okay to admit you've chosen badly with regards to this man and you so have.

Changing one of your own behaviours is hard enough, asking someone
else to change those is really asking the impossible.

What did you learn about relationships when growing up?.

The 51% thing is so fatuous it breaks my heart honestly. Sticking with this out of misplaced pride or an innate fear of being on your own is not going to do you or your child any favours at all. All he will do to you both is grind you down even more. He has done a real number on you to get you to such a low point hasn't he?. I can only assume his ex left him because of his controlling behaviour and controlling behaviour is at heart abusive. This man you've shackled yourself currently to has enough red flags to make a whole string of bunting. He has made your life a misery and will continue to do so. The proposed name is just a continuation of power and control on his part.

BraveLilBear Tue 09-Jul-13 17:17:24

It's the W one.

My dad may have been similar to my DP. Even looks similar. My dad is very nice and we are fairly close, but my mum always says he was controlling of her- they divorced when I was 14.

My dad quite likes him, my mum is very cautious. His reluctance to make an effort makes this worse.

In the cold light of the post-birth, there's a fairly good chance he'll come to his senses... but it's the what if factor that is stressing me out.

there's going to be a row tonight. Great.

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 09-Jul-13 17:19:22

"it depends on if he wants it or not"

He wants? Sounds to me like your whole life has been sacrificed on the altar of what he wants. Stand up for what you want and, if you get the 'pack your bags' retort, take him up on the kind offer. Good luck

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 09-Jul-13 17:22:41

"In the cold light of the post-birth, there's a fairly good chance he'll come to his senses."

I don't share your optimism. If anything, bullies tend to turn the heat up once their victim is indisposed, vulnerable, dependent and knackered looking after a small baby. They see you as an easier target.

I was wondering what you learnt about relationships when growing up and subconsciously you've picked someone just like your Dad.

We learn about relationships first and foremost from our parents; what did yours teach you?.

Your Dad unsurprisingly likes this bloke because he sees in him a kindred spirit; another man who uses power and control on their victim. Your mother is very wary of this man for good reason, she now recognises controlling behaviours when she sees it. Thankfully your mother divorced him when you were 14 but the damage had been already done; you learnt an awful lot of damaging stuff about relationships in those intervening years and now all that has been transferred into your own relationship. It is not surprising at all that you found a controlling man as a partner, this bloke targeted your already low sense of self esteem and worth and honed in.

Now you need to consider the future for you and your as yet unborn child. There is no future for you if you were to remain with this man. Controlling behaviours such as this man displays are abusive ones. He has also liked upped the power and control ante from the very early stages. You likely did not notice or perhaps minimised to yourself his behaviours from early on. Abuse like this is also insidious in its onset and he can also do nice sometimes. However, nice/nasty is a continuous cycle and it is never long before the nasty part returns. You are seeing him now for what he really is and represents.

You certainly cannot saddle your child with the W name that he is proposing. Its just wrong on so many levels and could be seen as further punishment against you for challenging his all encompassing needs for power and control of everyone and everything around him.

And no, he won't come to his senses either. This is also because he does not at heart think he is doing anything wrong in the first place!.

KingRollo Tue 09-Jul-13 17:39:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ImperialBlether Tue 09-Jul-13 17:43:58

I keep coming back to this line in the original OP:

...that DP is also refusing to let baby have my surname as an additional middle name (tho has conceded to let it have one of my family first names as a middle name)...

I can't get past this, sorry.

And if he's going to have a fight with a woman who's nearly due, he's less of a man than you think he is.

Is your mum able to come to pick you up if you have a row? I think he could do with a very sharp lesson. If you were my daughter I'd be in the car like a flash.

Ezio Tue 09-Jul-13 17:57:38

Some PM me the name, before i make my call.

KingRollo Tue 09-Jul-13 17:59:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ezio Tue 09-Jul-13 18:01:09

Seriously OP, i'd hate it too, its such a harsh name on a tiny baby.

Also, hes rather contr

Ezio Tue 09-Jul-13 18:01:20


Busybusybust Tue 09-Jul-13 18:25:45

I can't work it out either! Someone pm me please!

WhiteBirdBlueSky Tue 09-Jul-13 18:46:13

Baby names isn't something you can compromise on.

It is something where both of you have to have a veto.

If he is saying that he has a veto and you don't then this is a big red flag for him being a controlling partner.

Somebody who retorts that you can 'pack your bags' when his behaviour is challenged in any way doesn't sound like someone who is intending to marry you at some point. That sounds like a false promise to keep you hanging.

And why should you pack your bags not him? Do you rent or own? Do you jointly own or is the house in his name?

If you're not able to go back to work after the baby's born because of childcare costs, you be very reliant upon him .... and he could well abuse that.

He is determined to retain all control - even over things which he shouldn't have control over like the baby's name(s). I really would urge you at this stage to be assertive and challenge his control, so as to discern whether he will 'come good' or not as you are hoping.

If, worse case scenario, he doesn't pull his socks up and treat you as an equal, I suggest doing what other posters have suggested and look into the benefits you might be eligible for, as well as gauge if your mother could help. I know all this must make for very distressing reading, but knowledge and preparation are your friends.

I too wish you all the best.

QueenofallIsee Tue 09-Jul-13 19:45:39

Honey, your opinion is as valid as his and more so when you consider that you have to do the tough bit! This shouldn't be a fight, you find names you both like and enjoy the process of finding them. His issues with his Ex are NOT an excuse for behaving as though your opinion is less important than his. Stand firm or you will be ridden roughshod over this and other important decisions relating to the baby!

Chottie Tue 09-Jul-13 20:43:17

I have a DD in her 30s. If she was in your position I would be seriously worried......

GettingStrong Tue 09-Jul-13 20:45:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

thegreylady Tue 09-Jul-13 21:13:29

please someone pm me the name-the only one I can find meaning intelligent is Hugh and that's not a W name.Sorry to be trivial op.

Ezio Tue 09-Jul-13 21:16:13

I pm'd ya Lady.

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 21:17:56

I'm glad now I was forced to compromise. The names I liked when I was pregnant were too try-hard unusual.

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 21:19:05


having read the thread, I want to say that nobody should bulldoze over you. x

Flossbert Tue 09-Jul-13 21:20:28

You don't compromise. You find a name you both like.

Squitten Tue 09-Jul-13 21:25:07

On the names issue, me and DH have been going back and forth over names for DC3. He initially wanted to stick with the one we had originally picked out for DS2 if he had been a girl (which is what we are having) but I'm not totally in love with it anymore and have been trawling about and suggesting all sorts of other names, all of which he dislikes. Until the other night we hit on a new one that we both really like and I think we'll be going with that. Compromise is absolutely possible.

It sounds, however, like baby names are the least of your worries here. Your DP doesn't sounds very nice at ALL.

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 21:28:14

Give the baby your sur name.

This is what I regretted the most when I finally came to my senses and left a man who was very controlling.

I must once have thought that I should make do with a 51% relationship, but NOW I realise that if a man isn't as decent, good humoured and good company as my female friends are then I'm just not going to bother, why would I.

Good luck to you and your baby. I can't figure out what the name is, but don't be bullied into this, by a man who isn't your husband thank God.

Wuldric Tue 09-Jul-13 21:28:41

I got to choose both smile

I graciously allowed DH to choose DD's middle name.

My thinking was, I'm the one swelling up like a balloon, I'm the one that's got to pop. So there must be an upside for me <tbh I played that card too frequently>

steppemum Tue 09-Jul-13 21:30:09

we had a simple system

either of us could veto any name on the list for any reason, so because we didn't like it, because it was the name of a horrid child I taught etc.

then with the names left we looked at them talked about them etc until we found one we both liked.

I don't believe I had the right to name OUR child, and nor did dh. It had to be a joint decision.

Dh has a family name which every oldest son has had for 7 generations. If our dc was a boy, logically he should have that name, but dh was very very clear that we would only use it if we thought it was the right name and he checked and double checked that I liked it too.
Fortunately it is one of my favourite names.
We couldn't agree on a girls name at all. Good job dc was a boy!

frissonpink Tue 09-Jul-13 21:33:25

sad I think you have bigger issues that finding a name.

Wuldric Tue 09-Jul-13 21:34:53

Now you've reminded me, the other thing I did which was really quite sneaky was to tearfully propose an utterly ridiculous name that I knew DH would hate and loathe, and insist that this name and ONLY THIS NAME would work.

After a tiring week during which DH wore himself out with exhaustion arguing that Orlando was absurd, he was really quite happy with my compromise name.

I know that's manipulative and I don't normally do manipulative. I was pregnant, okay?

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 21:40:45

Somebody clever cleverer than I am pm me the name!?

Jenijena Tue 09-Jul-13 21:42:50

When the baby comes out, it will get a tag 'baby yoursurname'. This will also be its name in the red book, and hospital records. This happened to me last year, though I was happy with my baby having my hisband's surname (and mine as a middle name).

Go register the birth yourself (my hospital had a registry office on site, worth checking for).

Good luck.

But I'm very, very sorry you think 51% is good enough. You and your child deserve to be happier than that.

MysteriousHamster Tue 09-Jul-13 21:43:07

He doesn't think you're his equal. Ask him - ask him if you are equal to him? Because if so, why does he get to dictate where your surname goes just because of his issues?

Whatever you do, do not give in. You will always resent the W name. You don't want to think of that resentment when you think of your child.

mypussyiscalledCaramel Tue 09-Jul-13 21:48:25

When I was expecting ds2 I was not married to my now xh. He said to me one day, our son will be called Nicholas, I said ok as long as you don't mind me calling him Nick. Then he wanted his dads first name as his middle name. I said no way, we compromised and ds's middle name is his dads.

From the moment Ds2 was born he has been called Nick by me. When he was old enough to tell me his name was Nicholas, I said yes, but I shall call you Nick.

The only people who call him Nicholas are his teachers, until he puts them right.

My x was a control freak, although I didn't see it then, he upped the anti after Ds2 was born, then once we got married he thought he had got me completely.

The straw that broke the camels back was when he walloped ds2 (2 at the time) so hard, for doing something trivial, and leaving a hand print on his leg.

51% is not enough sad

No, 51% certainly isn't good. Somebody in the last few days posted something really articulate, profound and insightful on another thread about this ... I'll have a look for it.

BerkshireMum Tue 09-Jul-13 21:57:06

I'm too stupid too tired to work it out, can someone please PM me the name? Thanks

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 22:18:07

I'll pm you now

Whatwouldyousay Tue 09-Jul-13 22:23:15

Can someone please PM me the name too - I can't find anything other than Hugh.

Zynnia Tue 09-Jul-13 22:27:15

will do

katehastried Tue 09-Jul-13 22:33:43

You poor thing. I'm sorry you are realising that this man is really NOT a good thing for you.

I left a controlling man when my children were older. I wish I'd left before. I would still have had my beautiful babies but they wouldn't have known the trauma of separation when they were older. I think I always knew I would leave eventually. I wish I had been stronger and not so scared of being on my own. It's OK on my own. smile I get to say / wear / watch / listen to what I want.

51% sucks. I am 100% fabulous and I'm lucky to live with ME. ;)

Whatwouldyousay Tue 09-Jul-13 22:37:04

OP now that I have the name I'm gobsmacked.

Over and above your other issues with your DP, let's focus on the naming of your baby.

In order to get your DP to see sense, I would suggest asking his 11 year old DS how he would react if a boy of that name joined his class.

Job done!!

SlumberingDormouse Tue 09-Jul-13 22:56:47

I actually like the name, but then I have a very weird old-fashioned taste in names. My DP (who is half American) said immediately, 'That's a very black name.' hmm

But this is irrevelant; you don't like it and that's what matters. Might your DH be more amenable after you've been through labour?! Could you use -the name that must not be named- as a middle name perhaps, or use a stately name/Middle English name/another one meaning 'intelligent'? There are other surnames that I like too which could suffice.

WhiteBirdBlueSky Tue 09-Jul-13 23:01:09

The name is irrelevant.

If I were the OP I would be upset that people were PMing the name when I had specifically said I was fearful of being identified.

clam Tue 09-Jul-13 23:01:55

You simply cannot name a child something you dislike. You are going to be yelling calling that name out thousands and thousands of times over a lifetime. And with this one, you'll be cringing Every. Single. Time.

BraveLilBear Wed 10-Jul-13 09:33:00

Thanks all for your thoughts. Had an interesting discussion last night in which I repeatedly asked him 'do you want to be with me? ' he wouldn't give me an answer. Eventually he said maybe.

I feel numb.. I always felt that it was the love I felt for DP and he for me that would get me through labour. If that's gone, I don't know how I'll cope with childbirth let alone the life that comes after.

I feel very alone right now. Almost wish I was still at work so I could distract myself!

Re the names, I'm stepping up the search so we have a list again, for a boy or a girl.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Wed 10-Jul-13 09:34:04


Leave him. tosser.

And no need to "compromise" on names anymore.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 10-Jul-13 09:42:11

I repeatedly asked him 'do you want to be with me? ' he wouldn't give me an answer. Eventually he said maybe.



OP, please, before your baby arrives, think very carefully. Weigh up who you can rely on, where they are, what you can do. This man is not good for you.

I'm sorry to hear about this bear, when your feeling hormonal and nervous anyway so near the birth this is the last thing you need. Do you have any RL support nearby? I know you said your parents are some distance away - is there anyone else?

I know it's difficult to find the energy, but could you join an antenatal group just to give you something else to focus on other than your DP's prattishness. Aquanatal swimming or yoga or something like that?

Here are some flowers and I wish you peace and strength.

Zyn Wed 10-Jul-13 10:08:54

You don't need to compromise any more bear. Your choice. Your sur name. I understand that you're vulnerable being 38 weeks pregnant, but tell your health nurse/mw what's going on.

How can he believe he has the right to bully you so completely (first name and sur name) when he isn't committed to you. sad But he sounds a tosser and it's a good thing he's not committed to you. The commitment of such a controlling person would engulf you. Good luck to you and your baby.

Zyn Wed 10-Jul-13 10:11:32

Can you go back to your family after the baby is born?

There really is no point starting out as a family with a man who won't commit to you and wants to bulldoze over you at every point.... It will be better for you and your baby to start off with the people you can rely on. People who if asked if they love you and want to have you in their lives will instantly without hesitation say "of course !!". If those people are your mum, or a sister....... then please lean on them after your baby is born, even if it means travelling / relocation.

Zyn Wed 10-Jul-13 10:13:18

ps, did you see Gillian mckeith on the get me out of the jungle programme? she got through labour twice!

OxfordBags Wed 10-Jul-13 10:14:35

I've been lurking, because I saw your OP and thought "As this goes on, she's going to reveal more and more examples of him being an abuser", and, as my advice is always v blunt, I didn't want to barge in commenting on very little info.

Brave, you should name your child Massive Red Flags, because everything you write about this man is a massive red flag. Classic, classic signs, actons and words of an abuser. He's not even original. Abuse very often worsens or becomes more apparent during pregnancy or after childbirth.

He seems to be using you to work through his anger at his ex and his displeasure at the name choice of his other child (I bet no name compromise would've been good enough then either). This is a metaphor for how he, like all abusers, treat their partners - you are merely an object, a conduit, through which he gets what he wants, takes his temper out on, and gets revenge on for everything that pisses him off or disappoints or upset him in life. Such men are deeply inadequate and cannot change; they are emotionally stunted at a very young level and rarely if ever improve or change, although they might appear to change temporarily to suck you back in. This prize catch doesn't even care about you enough to make bullshit promises or try to appear to change, that's how little he respects you or gives a shit about your feelings and needs. Not that pretending to care or change is positive, I hasten to add.

Your talk of 51% positive being enough is very upsetting, but also very telling. As a child, you would've had to make sense of the Daddy you loved behaving badly, and you know doubt made it okay for yourself by telling yourself that so long as he is nice just over half the time, then everything is okay. I bet your Mum said similar stuff.

If you value yourself so low that only 51% is enough (and I bet a lot of that isn't actually great, just 'not bad'), then no-one else will value you more. Many women have partners who are okay or even lovely 80% of the time, but who beat and rape them and treat them like shit the other 20%. Does that make it worth staying? And do you know how much percent bad behaviour you should accept for a relationship to be worthwhile? ZERO.

Stay with this man, and the family atmosphere will train a son to be a future abuser and a daughter to be a future abuse victim. People think children don't notice their mothers being treated badly, but they dol even if itis unconscious. Look at you - your father treated your mother like crap, even though you say you didn't totally realise, and yet here you are, a victim of abuse. If you have a daughter, the name issue might be avoided, but she will grow up to be treated like shit, just like you are being.

On a last and practical note, as you are not married then actually and legally, your child should be given YOUR surname. It is a permissible legal courtesy that unmarried mothers can give their child the father's surname or double-barrell it. It is outrageous to demand a certain first name without any compromise, but it is a clear sign of the disdain he has for you that he won't even 'let' the child have your surname as a middle name when legally it should have the same surname as you!

Admitting you have made a mistake and leaving someone is never wrong. Staying with someone like this is always wrong. Just the way he said 'maybe' last night proves you shouldn't be with him, never mind the rest.

BraveLilBear Wed 10-Jul-13 10:16:29

The only thing I can think of is to go home to my mum, which isn't ideal as I moved away for a reason. Plus there's the issue of antenatal/labour care as I'll be in a different health authority.

I really don't have many options here.

Was blocked from antenatal yoga earlier because of a health issue (later proved unnecessary) and the only aquanatal class is a car ride away (DP has my car for work).

Just had a text off a friend who just had a baby saying she might pop round with some stuff so that might do me some good. Only problem is it's DP's close friend's girlfriend so will have to put on a brave face and keep schtum.

Thanks for all the support. Am in a dark place but I appreciate it.

TeamEdward Wed 10-Jul-13 10:20:08

So sorry for you in this situation.
There is no way I could be someone's "maybe". You are a woman who deserves to be someone's "forever", to be loved, cared for and adored. No man has a right to treat you like this. Your life is not a compromise, and neither should be your child's.

Learn from your mother's mistakes and get out while you can. Your partner sounds like a bully.

Everything OxfordBags says is spot on.

Just seen that DP has my car for work

He really does have all the control doesn't he? Is this just since you've been on maternity leave? If so, I suggest that however he got to work before, he carries on doing that now. The last thing you need at this stage is to be completely stuck unable to go anywhere. Tell him it's not convenient any more for him to take your car to work.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 10-Jul-13 10:42:17

The throwaway car comment made me groan out loud. Now you're expecting a visit from DP's mate's gf. You need your own circle of friends and support.

BraveLilBear Wed 10-Jul-13 10:56:16

He works 65 miles away, I worked 2 miles away. Public transport is just about possible for him if he leaves at 550. He'd get home after 8.

If I go it'll be tough luck.

I don't know if I can do this. We've had some amazing times together. I don't want to just give up when I know how he can be... but what I'm getting now is not good enough and he blames me for 'being miserable all the time'.

Thanks all. I see how stark things are. I need to think and come up with some plans.

So under normal circumstances with a nice respectful DP who is considerate and appreciative of you, him taking your car to work would be the sensible thing to do given his distance and your distance to work. But as he's a knob he can go jump.

As you say, you need to come up with some plans - what you said earlier about moving to a different health authority - that's not really an issue - I moved house very shortly before DC2s birth, and it was all fine - all your records just get moved over.

A fresh start is in order.

Or - could you stay and he go? What is the situation with the house? If it's rented, could you afford it with housing benefit plus tax credits?

Lweji Wed 10-Jul-13 11:18:52

I don't want to just give up when I know how he can be...

Do you want to stay knowing how he is?

How he can be is a possibility and it's in your head, mostly.

How he is now is a reality and how he will be as long as he feels in control of you.

Ohsparkle Wed 10-Jul-13 11:21:57

Oh Bear my heart is panicking for you; I was once with a chap who treated me like a princess 95% of the time. The other 5% he was a heavy drinker and his behaviour was disgusting. Used to frighten me and embarrass me. I, too, didn't want to return to Mum as had left home for a reason. (I can now see I swapped one set of circumstances for another). I left ex and returned twice (after he cried and sobbed and promised he'd change). Of course, he never did. The 3rd time I got away for good. Going back to Mum wasn't as bad as I'd thought. With hindsight, I only wish I'd had the strength to stay away from ex the first time. I developed health issues while with ex that miraculously disappeared a few months after I left him. It was tough leaving him as Mum didn't believe the 5% horrid behaviour (she'd never witnessed him drunk) and she wanted me to go back to him, told me I'd be single and lonely forever (yes, really!!) so I had to have an inner core of strength to get through it. But get through it I did with the help of AD's and repeating a mantra to myself that I would be better off "single and lonely" than scared and having panic attacks from being with this man.

I realise my story is not exactly the same as yours but wanted to you know people have been through similar and made it out the other side.
I wish you every success at getting away from this controlling and abusive man. Go through all your options. Hugs to you xx

ImperialBlether Wed 10-Jul-13 11:29:12

Well, he'll have the choice now of buying himself a car (bet it's not his fault he doesn't have one) or moving closer to work.

Just out of interest, does he always drive your car? Every day? What happens at the weekend? In what way is it your car? Do you just pay the bills for it? Who puts the petrol in for his 130 mile daily round trip?

ImperialBlether Wed 10-Jul-13 11:29:36

Personally I think he believes he's showing a weakness if he says he wants to be with you.

BerkshireMum Wed 10-Jul-13 11:40:45

Bear, given what you've told us about your parents' relationship, I bet your mum would understand, possibly more than you think. Moving back with a parent is rarely the first choice for anyone but think of all the options it would give you.

Space to bond with your baby - with the name you choose

Time to think what you want to do next and where you'd like to be living

Chance to reconnect with some friends and build your own support network

If necessary, you could even go while he's out - make arrangements to have the car just for a day for some reason. Doesn't mean you don't see him or talk to him again (if that's what YOU decide) but it means it's you in control, not him.

Please take care - and start making some serious plans for your precious baby xx

valiumredhead Wed 10-Jul-13 12:03:52

I was the same as cogito, when Dh manages to grow and give birth to a baby that's when he gets to have serious input. Luckily it's a name we both liked. -- I'm only half joking--

GettingStrong Wed 10-Jul-13 13:38:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GettingStrong Wed 10-Jul-13 13:41:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Wed 10-Jul-13 14:27:54

Maybe have a little read of this.

Honestly this would be funny if it wasn't so bloody tragic. "My partner, who has no legal right to decide the name of my baby, won't let me decide the name of the baby."

HE'S the one with no bargaining chips. Except his temper that is. But you're too big a girl to put up with being bullied like that. He's a puffed up ego on legs and lke the Wizard of Oz you just need to see through him and stop pandering to him. You're feeling so vulnerable now, and he's winning because of that. May I ask, why are you with someone you would describe as "selfish"?

ElephantsAndMiasmas Wed 10-Jul-13 14:28:16

Sorry, link fail!

Viking1 Wed 10-Jul-13 15:26:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Mumsyblouse Wed 10-Jul-13 17:01:16

I moved 250 miles to my mum's a week before giving birth, it's fine, you are allowed to do this and can even change your mind about where you want to give birth during labour! It was not complicated at all, and I was incredibly glad to have my mum there, plus I went to a less busy part of the country where I was very well looked after.

If this is all that is stopping you, please don't let it.

MysteriousHamster Wed 10-Jul-13 18:57:43

He's bonkers. He thinks he can pressure you into his name choice (and his surname) at the same time as refusing to commit to being with you.

Does he think you are so vulnerable that you have no choice but to agree to everything?

And/or does he think you won't stand up to him?

I know this is so so so hard but do not make any permanent decisions like a baby name, under the direction of a man who does not appear to love you.

GettingStrong Thu 11-Jul-13 23:53:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tightfortime Fri 12-Jul-13 00:23:42

His timing sucks and maybe says it all but at least you now know to give your child your surname and any other damn name you want.

Call your mum man is worth 51% or a maybe. Baby or not.

katehastried Fri 12-Jul-13 21:14:48

I got through labour with an abusive man and I felt like you did - that our relationship would get me through it.

Actually it became all about HIM: he was tired, he was stressed, he was quite angry at me because it was taking so long, rubbing his face in his hands and sighing. He was so tired that as soon as the baby was born he was off back home to sleep, leaving me crying in the ward.

You can do this.

GettingStrong Sat 13-Jul-13 09:35:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Earthworms Sat 13-Jul-13 22:03:39

Listen to gettingstrong

She is one of the bravest, most courageous mn'ers you will meet. (Good to see you back Gs. I was a lurker - willing you on whilst the Wise Ones helped you through)

Somethingtothinkabout Mon 15-Jul-13 20:56:51

Hi Brave, hope you are doing O.k It's understandable if thinking about leaving and making a plan feels like such a daunting task when you have so much to do over the next few weeks, but the longer you leave it the harder it gets, please trust that.

You'll be able to do it, believe that. There is all the support there for you if/when you set yourself free. And so many lovely ladies here, some of whom have been right where you are, can give you advice and help, whether you go now or feel like you can't yet.

Definitely no to the W name though, and at the very least make sure your surname is the middle name, but preferably the actual surname.


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