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Think you've decided on a name? Check out where it ranks on the official list of the most popular baby names first.

How did you know you'd found the right name?

(25 Posts)
MsChanandlerBong Wed 01-Jun-11 12:04:53

I'm struggling a bit with finding the 'right' name for my dd1 (due Sept so I have a bit of time yet!).

I've always been really interested in names, so there are names that I absolutely love, but in rl I'm not brave enough to inflict give these to my daughter. So we're searching for names that meet our criteria of being classic but not too popular, easy to pronounce/spell, have a nice nn, etc. There are a few that meet those criteria well, and are lovely names, but I don't seem to have the emotional connection that I do with my beloved (more unusual) names.

Should I just get over myself? I know that once dd is born the name will become associated with her so I will love it for completely different reasons. Or should I keep searching to find one that meets our criteria but also makes my heart leap? (ie am I being unrealistic with my expectations!!).

How did you know you had found the right name?

jenrendo Wed 01-Jun-11 12:10:06

We had a shortlist of about 3 and only chose his name when he was born. We immediately knew what to call him when we saw him. The thing with names is that you really want one that isn't popular, but is classic etc but at the end of the day, whatever name you choose, there will more than likely be lots of others out there with the same one! We chose ones that had a nice ring to them when said with our surname, but also ones with a family connection/happy memory connection. You'll know when she's born! Good luck x

jenrendo Wed 01-Jun-11 12:12:11

Oh, and to make things trickier we didn't know that he was a boy, so had 3 for each sex. I think it almost makes it more difficult when you know the sex, because it's difficult not to start calling the baby by it's name. My friends' baby was 'Harry' at the 20 week scan. Luckily he suits his name x

pipkin35 Wed 01-Jun-11 12:13:16

What about the meaning of a name? That's how we chose DS's name and it felt so right.
And if you have a real love for certain names but don't want to inflict them, could you still have one as a middle name?
Or since you still have a while, if you 'talk' to bump, you could try out a few of your beloved names and see if any 'feel' right? or how do the beloved names sound if they can be shortened?
And how do your choices 'go' with surname in terms of sound and length and written down?
With DD I had a dream, but still had a choice between 2, but then OH's brother had written a song years ago and the title was one of those names, so it was an easy choice then.

I don't think you should 'get over yourself' ! Name choosing for your child is a really special thing - you should be happy and enjoy the process! ;)

pipkin35 Wed 01-Jun-11 12:14:58

Oh yeah, to add - we liked 'Jack' as first but then read it was the top name that year, was over used etc....was on all the the end, we could have chosen that since because it was so popular, not many people then chose it, IYSWIM! (Glad we didn't in the end though!)

mayanna123 Wed 01-Jun-11 14:16:05

Here's what I would recommend: Look at the list of ALL baby names given last year, avoid the top 100 (or even top 250) ones and find a few that you love the sound & meaning of and that work well with your surname.

And please don't worry so much about pleasing others, it is YOUR baby and people will associate almost any name with your child (even if they had other associations beforehand).

greencolorpack Wed 01-Jun-11 14:20:18

The strangest thing of all is that you are no longer your own name, you will be "X's mummy" in mothers and toddler's groups and school playgrounds. Where X is the name of the child.

Here's what we did - we chose a girl's name we both liked, didn't tell anyone, then we looked at the top 100 and chose a name initial "J" cos we both liked initial J, a name that was in the top 100, so that if she hated the unusual first name she could use the middle name, which is common enough that everyone knows it and how to spell it.

Don't tell any interfering mothers or MILs the name you choose until the baby is born, that way if they want to mump and moan about it, it's too late cos that's her name - hah!!!

petaluma Wed 01-Jun-11 14:21:21

I think you just know tbh. We had a short list of names (or rather compromise as dh hated my faves and vice versa) but what actually happened was when ds popped out, a name I had been previously ambivalent about, nay even to the extent of disliking, just seemed to fit. Now, he really IS that name and some people tell me that they now like the name, when they previously didn't, because they have a personality and face to match it with.

As long as you and dh come to an agreement, sod everyone else!

MsChanandlerBong Wed 01-Jun-11 15:00:40

Thanks everyone for your thoughts.

Mayanna do you know where I can find the list of ALL baby names given last year? (I have googled but with no success - am only being given the usual top 100 responses).

I think the idea of having a few names that we then select from once the baby is here might be the best way forward. Although, I have always wondered how that works... as I've never had a baby before, I wasn't sure that a newborn could 'look like' or suit a particular name.

I guess I was just hoping I could find a name that I would adore and feel honoured to bestow upon my baby... but in the harsh realities of real life that doesn't seem to be happening!

dexifehatz Wed 01-Jun-11 15:05:47

When I was having DD1[12] I was absolutely convinced it was a girl and we both chose Hattie.Hope as a middle name.I didn't consider boys names at all,but would have gone with Thurstan [hubbie is a big Sonic Youth fan!]With second baby just knew it was a boy and was with Max for ages.Then hubbie heard Dexter on the TV [before series,thankyou!] and I was smitten.We chose Miles as a middle name.It suits him perfectly!DD2 aged 2 is Felicity Faith who we usually call Flissy.I like the fact that throughout school there hasn't been another Hattie or Dexter and may not be other Felicitys.

ScarlettIsWalking Wed 01-Jun-11 15:07:50

I had two names and knew DD was a girl. Both v different and when I saw her I chose the dainty girlie name as she was like a delicate little peach.

Trinaluce Wed 01-Jun-11 17:48:36

We had a looooooooong list (shortlist? What's that then?!) by the time I was in hospital. I was in the room on my own with DD after DH went home to get some sleep (lucky him) and glanced across at the cot. She might as well have sat up and said 'Hi mummy, I'm (name), who are you?', and it wasn't even a name I'd been that dead set on. Once DH got back I told him, he liked it and we just went back through the list to find a middle name we agreed on.

Her name is 100% her: I don't know if she became it or it became her, but I could never call her anything else. We're not even going to attempt shortening our lists this time, just take in the ones we like and hope for a similar epiphany moment!

Bumperlicioso Wed 01-Jun-11 17:58:11

In answer to the OP, once I'd stopped crying every time I thought of calling DD2 a name (she was 6 days old, unnamed and I had the baby blues!)

mayanna123 Wed 01-Jun-11 18:36:57

Unfortunately I can't find the list of ALL the names right now but they have been posted on here before. It's publishsed by the ONS. Perhaps someone else knows where it is.

mum2ozzie Wed 01-Jun-11 19:51:25

Mayanna, to get the list of all baby names:

Search for office for national statistics, baby names on google.
Click on the link for baby names on the top right under "related links".
Go to 2009 baby names boys or girls and open the excel file.
Click along to table 6 (tabs along the bottom)

This is all of the names from 2009. I don't think 2010 is released until October.

Hope this helps smile The names do get a bit bizarre the further you go down. And its interesting to see how many people can spell a name incorrectly!

whizzyrocket Wed 01-Jun-11 20:57:26

..Or just how many people give their child a name that is in fact an abbreviation! I'll never understand why Charles isn't high on the list but Charlie is; and surely the charm of the name Jack is that it's short for John or Jonathan?

But anyway, my thoughts are go with your heart- don't be cruel, obviously (not many little girls would want to be known as Norma or Ernestine!), but don't worry about names not being too common. My favourite name at the moment is Adelaide (Heidi for short- it comes from the German, Adelheide) but unfortunately my husband says he's too fond of F1, and Adelaide is a race-track to him. Boo! Shame! smile

brightcopperkettles Thu 02-Jun-11 11:46:15

I knew for DD that I had found the 'right' name when I couldn't think of any others I liked as much and kept coming back to it. We still went into hospital with 2 possibilities (for both boy and girl as we didn't know) and the name still seemed right once she was born. She didn't 'look' like any particular name to be honest, we just went with what we loved.

This time around we had fallen in love with a girls name and agreed. We have found out we are having a boy which is wonderful, but we really don't agree on names so I'm not sure what we'll end up with!

mayanna123 Thu 02-Jun-11 12:08:11

Many thanks mum2ozzie. Very interesting - there are actually some lovely underused names towards the bottom. And perhaps some of the 'misspellings' are foreign versions of spellings (e.g. Aleksander is Polish I think).

iskra Thu 02-Jun-11 13:50:42

I never LOVED DD's name. It ticked all the boxes & we both liked it - more importantly, we both hated the name choosing process, so we wanted to draw a line under it! Now she's nearly 3 & I love her name & can't imagine a better one. Pregnant again & really struggling this time, as I feel we've already found the only name for us!

Cattleprod Thu 02-Jun-11 13:55:26

We tried to make a shortlist, but only liked one boys name.

I still feel the same - if this baby is a boy I have no idea what he will be called, as I don't like any names at all.

Continuum Thu 02-Jun-11 13:58:14

Had a scan yesterday and found out we're expecting ds2 (oooh so exciting saying that!!!) and I kept trying out names on the bump till one fit. ds has a very unusual name which we absolutely love and there hasn't really been another close to it, but we discovered we were trying to think of a more unusual name for this one and as it turns out a nice, normal, fairly common name fits the bump perfectly, just right, like the name has always been out there waiting to be attached to our son!! And all the more unusual names which we liked, some quite a bit, didn't fit at all.

As for unusual names in general, ds adores his. Although after 7 years I'm a bit tired of telling the story of it, although no-one has ever been negative!

muminthemiddle Thu 02-Jun-11 14:44:57

I think you can over analyse a name.
Pick a name you both like. Make sure it isn't silly with your surname.
We didn't choose a name that close relatives or close friends had picked. Make sure you can live with all the associated nns.
Your child will grow into the name.
Finally don't pay too much attention to what others think. It is your baby and not theirs.

MsChanandlerBong Fri 03-Jun-11 13:22:20

I appreciate you might be right and I probably am over analysing it, but I do think it is a really important decision (which is why I am on this board I guess!)

I suppose I want to make sure we find a name we absolutely love, so that when (inevitably!) someone has an 'opinion' on it, we can hand on heart stand up for it whilst making sure we don't saddle dd with something less than ideal.

So as per my original question, I just wandered if people had an epiphany moment when they found their chosen name, or whether people were more pragmatic when making their selection...

If it helps, the name I love with all my heart is Ariel (or Arielle) but worry about the washing powder/typeface/TV connotations so think we have to avoid that.

The names that meet our criteria that I 'quite like' but don't feel a massive connection to are things like Georgina or Abigail. I also like Romilly but dh says "it isn't a real name"!!

petaluma Fri 03-Jun-11 20:23:08

Ariel/Arielle is beautiful. A friend of a friend called her son that - pronounced Ah-ree-elle not Air-re-elle. My great aunt was called Oriel - may use that for dd2.

Also love the names Marielle/Mariella.

HopingForAZoo Sat 04-Jun-11 01:26:42

I knew we had found "the" names (1boy and 1 girl as we didn't know what we were having) when I never looked for new names in baby books. I just kept looking up the same two in every book. smile

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