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'i changed my baby 's name'- your stories please

(35 Posts)
rachael2401 Mon 26-Nov-12 21:23:59

i am thinking of changing my ten week old 's name. i would like to hear from anyone who has done this. what were people's reactions? how easy to do legally? how did older children cope? did you feel better or worse for doing it? your reasons for doing so. thank you in anticipation.

RosannaBanana Tue 27-Nov-12 09:16:53

I haven't done this but didn't want to leave your post unanswered. Why do you want to change your baby's name?

10 weeks is still pretty young, I think its no problem legally up to one year.

BellaTheGymnast Tue 27-Nov-12 11:31:40

I did! Felt better straight away, having agonised about it for ages. It just wasn't the right name, I'd felt pressured to pick something but was so mental with PND I chose the wrong one from our shortlist.

We ended up with an amended birth certificate and a bit of teasing from friends (about which I have zero sense of humour) but otherwise the relief outweighed the negatives.

rachael2401 Tue 27-Nov-12 13:14:16

Bella-are you actually me?! I can't bring myself to use the name we have given. I will copy below my posts on the whole sorry story. I am now being seen re PND and think the whole name debacle is a symptom of this. Hubby is very very unhappy about the thought of changing a name.

Help please! I have to register our daughter this week and we are still undecided. We had a boy's name all sorted as we were both convinced it was a boy and when she was born I was soooo gobsmacked I made the midwife check she was a girl several times!!!!! We had never settled on a girls name and so decided to give it a few days to decide. Five weeks later.... We already have a Jessica. I have always loved the name Martha but suggested Anna during pregnancy which DH really liked. I thought it sounded like a well grounded person's name! DH isn't as keen on Martha due to our surname being Parsons. So I suppose what I'm asking is does Martha Parsons sound ok or not? Middle name will be Poppy if that makes a difference. DH as said we can have either ... We (i) just have to decide. I am having major issues making any decision let alone such a big one. Please help!
Argh!!! Soooo hard... I feel like it's a sliding doors moment! I worry about the ryhmeyness of Martha parsons but think it is a lovely name and have liked it ever since a girl was called Martha who washed my hair in the hairdressers! Poppy is the middle name as our eldest has Polly...a little frivolous I know but there is a story. Boys name was Joseph Michael Sastra. Joseph was our boys name last time and both our dads are called Michael so that kills two birds ;) Justhayley - I've been trying them bth out but now I just think of them both. Might call her Anna slash Martha!

Think it's pretty level pegging at the moment....

hello lovely people who responded to my post. am hoping for some gentle honest advice. i have been very low since having dd2 and was struggling with naming as you know. i went todo birth declaration (as baby born in different authority) and went with Martha poppy. got home and had major panic attack about it. cue ridiculous amounts of tears, huge row with hubby and sleepless night. the next day i drove to the town of her birth and registered her as Anna. two weeks later i still refer to her as the baby. feel i should have had the courage to stick with my gut feeling. all sorts of things going on including relatives referring to baby as Anna. worry about giving her a rhymey name. basically i could not cord with the weight of the decision being on me. am now being seen by doctors re pnd and feel that the name thing has become wrapped up in this. am now wondering whether i should change her name to Martha. have researched and baby does not recognise own name until five months ish and she is nine weeks tomorrow. husband not impressed (to put it mildly) i have dd1 who is two and a half and he says not fair on her or him. says people Will think we are odd. am concerned about my relationship with her. i feel i am starting to bond now but with i had a name i could naturally use without feeling forced. hubby calling her Anna at every opportunity with makes it feel even more forced to me. your thoughts please. please be kind ; am feeling rather fragile. no alternative name suggestions please!

Add message | Report | Message poster rachael2401 Sun 18-Nov-12 22:18:12
thank you all. am ok. think i Will be fine. there are a lot of other things going on for us right now which is making things worse. you're all right. it's probably not about the name as such, although i do so wish i had voiced how i felt straight after birth birth(baby born, amazing delivery, shock at it being a girl, thought 'it's Martha!') what a flipping mess ! am seeing HV don't worry! she is registered Anna by the way.

Add message | Report | Message poster rachael2401 Sun 18-Nov-12 22:21:10
ps my dd2 is completely lovely. i canont complain about her in any way. she is chilled, doesn't cry lots, feeding well (although i do wish she would take a bottle so i have the option of leaving her for a few hours in the future!) smiley, lovely love lovely. please don't think that i don't appreciate how lovely she is.

Marcheline Tue 27-Nov-12 13:34:16

Hi Rachel,

I changed DD's middle name, but kept her first name. I did suffer from PND but I don't think that it was a sympton - having said that, I totally understand how important it would be to feel as though you had thr right name for your DD.

It is really easy to do, all you have to do is take yourself down to the registry office with the original birth certificate, and change it.

I think you should change her name. Your DH will get over it very quickly, 10 weeks is very young and people will forget that you had originally called her something else. If it something that seriously bothers you, it could stay with you for the rest of your life and I think it's important to point that out to your DH. Things that happened while I was suffering from PND really stayed with me, and I found it very hard to 'let go' - there are things from that time, which could have really tainted our marriage / relationships with other people, if we hadn't put them to bed. This could be one of those things, for you. Does that make sense at all?

For what it's worth, I think Martha Poppy Parsons sounds lovely.

EdwardtheEagle Tue 27-Nov-12 13:37:59

If you really want to change it you should, but fwiw I think if your Dh is not keen, you're not totally sure and the fact that Martha parsons is a bit 'maaa paaaa' I'd keep Anna - it's a really lovely name.

EdwardtheEagle Tue 27-Nov-12 13:38:42

Ps my maiden name had that same rhyminess and I hated it sad

BellaTheGymnast Tue 27-Nov-12 13:53:07

You poor thing. I really feel for you.

Right, just to dissect a bit. Firstly, I don't know the legalities of changing a name that's already registered where you are (you said you were in a different country).

Secondly, it seems to me that Martha is the 'special' name, the one that pulls at your heartstrings. This is what happened to me, I 'felt' something about name X, but it was one of three on a shortlist, and when it came to deciding my OH gave me a (not very good) reason for not choosing X, so I went with something else. He chose to tell me the reason a couple of days after giving birth, by the way, when I was traumatised and bonkers. The name we went with was a bit more 'out there' and I could never say it with confidence. I dreaded people asking me her name. I too just called her 'the baby'.

In the end DP just wanted to do what would make me less anxious, also there were no other children to consider.

I don't think the argument about it being unfair on your DDs washes, to be honest, the older one will get used to the change and DD2 doesn't know anything about herself yet! Presuming your DH actually likes the name Martha I'm sure his annoyance is due to being worried about what people will think. You just have to front it out if you change it, I'm afraid.

So, should you change it? FWIW, you seem to have an emotional attachment to Martha, and that's what you thought of when she arrived. Anna is a beautiful name, it was on our long list, and Anna Parsons is lovely. Martha Parsons to me is more memorable and more impactful, precisely because of the rhyming thing.

In the end the only way I could move on was to change it. I sometimes do think about the reason DP gave, but for me that's less important than the way the name makes me feel. Hope that helps.

stilllearnin Tue 27-Nov-12 13:57:21

Hello, Just to let you know my daughter changed her own name when she was 6 years old!! I thought she was joking but it was actually the name we had always wanted but somehow ended up choosing another. (not PND but something like postnatal misery/ confusion).

It has stuck and all family and friends call her by her new name, nobody slips up or ever mentions her earlier name...after 6 years of calling her it! It was strange at first and a bit sad, like a tiny bereavement, but I am really happy as it is much more right for her.

If you don't do it you will always want to of course, and although I did not choose it, as Bella says I felt massive relief when she changed it. It is important and something joyful (I do understand it may not feel joyful to you at the moment).

I am sure it is really difficult for you with PND and I wonder if it is hard to trust your instincts but if Martha feels right, go for it. This may be a bit of a naff idea but have you thought of keeping Anna too as a middle name - she may want to use that when she's older.

I actually love the name Martha and the sliding rhyme of her surname actually adds to it, for me. Good luck with your recovery too.

madmayday Tue 27-Nov-12 14:08:22

Bit different, but I changed the spelling of my daughter's name from 'Annabelle' to 'Annabel', when she was 10 weeks old also, funnily enough! Both spellings are fine, but it was like a burning need inside of me and I couldn't rest until I'd changed it. I think because DP chose her name (and although I like it a lot, it is a compromise name for me), I had to do something to make it seem more like I had a hand in it, possibly? I can't explain it - she just IS a 'Bel' instead of a 'Belle'. Also, 'Annabelle' is far too girly for my lass, so it worked out well! grin

The downside of course, is teasing from friends and family and lots of baby cards addressed to the original spelling. But it's the kind of name that people will always spell wrong anyway, so there you go! I have to admit, I felt INSTANTLY better after the birth certificate was amended. I say go for Martha!

As an aside, I'm an Eloise (nn. Ellie) but for the first few days of my life I was called Eleanor! (Why didn't my parents just go with Ellie on it's own?!) I guess being an indecisive muppet runs in my family! grin

Butterfly1975 Wed 28-Nov-12 12:14:50

I changed my ds's name from the nn on his birth certificate to the full version - it was easy just phoned the Registry office to let them know and picked up a new birth certificate. Despite the fact he is never called the longer version I feel better knowing he has the choice and that he doesn't have to explain his name isn't actually short for xxx anyway!

I agonised about it for months too - definitely linked with some kind of PND or anxiety disorder I had at the time.

FWIW I think Anna works much better with your surname - it is classic and timeless (to coin a well used MN phrase smile)

rachael2401 Sat 01-Dec-12 18:11:51

So my husband...he say yes. Edwardtheeagle - would you pm me your maiden name out of interest?

rachael2401 Sat 01-Dec-12 18:13:26

Bella - would you share your DCs name via pm?

Journey Sat 01-Dec-12 18:22:28

Anna Parsons sounds much nicer than Martha Parsons.

Elkieb Sat 01-Dec-12 18:32:17

I prefer Anna but I think the baby's name is symptomatic of a larger issue. My sons name has significance but my favourite name is his middle name. My DH and I are both happy and now my William is perfect. My sister has a middle name that isn't on her birth certificate but to us and her it's her middle name. It's even on her bank cards!

FreddieMercurysBolero Sat 01-Dec-12 18:41:56

i actually know a martha parsons! And i aways thought she had a lovely namesmile I never thought about it rhyming, i dont think it does, really. if it makes you happy, go for it.

BornInACrossFireHurricane Sat 01-Dec-12 18:57:45

Anna is simply beautiful, in my opinion, and classic. I do appreciate how difficult it must be having this weighing on your mind. If you really think of her as a Martha and think you will regret not changing it, now is the time to do it.

Gugglebum Sun 02-Dec-12 06:19:13

I changed my last little boy's name at 6 weeks. I went with the name we had settled on and loved for ages before he was born, originally. But then every time anyone said his name I got this odd little knot in my stomach, and it just never sat right, even though I so wanted it to. There had been another name I'd always loved, but due to where we live, I knew loads of people would not pronounce it correctly (to me) and so it had been off the list. But that name kept coming to mind and I couldn't shake it. My extended family all thought I had lost my mind, but I went ahead and changed it anyway. I've never looked back, and now at age 17 months, he in no way suits his original name. He is perfectly the name he has. There are those who say it wrong, but I nicely instruct them to call him by his nickname. smile

mumsywoo78 Tue 04-Dec-12 15:55:16

omg this sounds like me im in the same boy is 10 weeks old &i can only bring myself to call him the baby. i loved the name noah when i was preg so went with that but after recieving a lot of negative reactions to the name especially from my father it put doubts in my mind as wether to call him that.anyway as the 6 week registration time limit came up i just didnt know what to do i didnt like any other names & had go to know him as noah.anyway in a massive panic on the way to the registry office i decided to name him kevin noah after his soon as i got home i had a massive panic attack over what id done no way did i want to call him kevin. ever since that day 4 weeks ago iv suffered major anxiety&panic attacks im now being treated for PND. iv no intention of calling my boy kevin or noah as i feel iv now gone off that name cos of the stress it has caused me.iv gone through hundreds of names&nothing seems to fit.iv got a 4 year old too whos constantly calling him noah which drives me mad.i just dont know what to do its making me ill. just watching emmerdale on tv gives me panic attack because thats where i got the name noah from in the first place! can any 1 help im at my whits end&my boy needs a name.

Viviennemary Tue 04-Dec-12 16:59:34

If people want to change a baby's name then I think they should do it. But have a serious think about it first.

1978andallthat Tue 04-Dec-12 18:06:57

Both lovely and not too rhymey at all

jidelgin Tue 04-Dec-12 23:30:05

OP I love Martha. I thought my own name was too rhymey n girlie and in my 20s I asked people to call me by a shortened version which was a bit less so. It works well for me. If your wee one does end up bothered by rhymey (dare say she wont), Martha is a cool handle with a bit of wiggle room for her.

ah mumsy that sounds super stressful. If it is too tricky to come up w something else can you reconnect with your love for the name Noah? It is a lovely lads name. Sod the nay sayers.
Maybe you could start a new thread looking for alternatives to Noah? There are a few threads like that and the MNers seem to be really good at coming up w similar names or helping someone chose between 2 or 3 possibles. Good luck

AlexanderS Wed 05-Dec-12 07:56:24

When I first read the name Martha Parsons I thought it was a perfectly sensible name and didn't even notice the bit of a rhyme.

OP, you feel in your heart of hearts that your baby's name is Martha - you gotta change it!

mumsy, I think you've also got to go ahead and change your baby's name. I'm surprised you got lots of negative comments as Noah is a very popular name these days, which combined with its Biblical origin (and the fact that it has therefore stood the test of time), makes it a pretty safe choice. You have to bear in mind the older generation generally don't look at baby name charts/go to toddler groups/do the school run etc. and so aren't aware of trends in baby naming. When I announced our choice of name for DS my mum said 'Ooh, that's really unusual'. I was like well, no mother, it's actually in the top 100 names for boys now! Noah was the name you wanted to use all along, I'm sure you will fall back in love with it - the stress has been because you wanted to use it but felt you couldn't, right?

rachael2401 Thu 06-Dec-12 23:05:07

Freddiemercurysbolero-what does your friend think of her name? i have actually considered messaging all Martha Parsons on fb and asking their opinion! mumsy-are you ok? i love noah but i obvs appreciate what you're going through it gets worse the longer it goes on but you don't want to rush in case you get it wrong again. i think you can only change once on birth certificate then it's by deed poll. don't think anyone would want to tell friends and family a third name! my boys name was Joseph but for number 3 i am quite keen on Alastair at the mo. also love Finn, Cal, maybe have a look at some biblical names if you really want something totally different. reuben has the same cool but nice factor as noah i think. i can't believe i am posting about name for imaginary third child when i can't even name the one I've got!

rachael2401 Thu 06-Dec-12 23:20:21

mumsy-what about Nathaniel? i love it. still old testament, could be Nat or nate for short. x

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