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Can someone 'have dibs' on a baby name

(76 Posts)
YoMamma Sun 08-Sep-13 10:27:56

What would you do if a close friend/family member (with no DCs and not yet pregnant) asked you not to use a baby name because it is their favourite name for when they have children? Would it make a difference if they were TTC and having difficulties?

Frontdoorstep Mon 09-Sep-13 14:22:11

First come, first served, you have an attachment to that name, that's perfectly valid. Don't not use it for something that might never happen, I.e, sil having a dd.

When she wants to discuss names with you that is the perfect opportunity for you to say that you like, such and such and you are considering it for dd.

minipie Mon 09-Sep-13 14:39:38

hmm, if she has a list I too lose sympathy tbh ( or to put it a nicer way, clearly she has other names she also likes, so it wouldn't be so bad to use the one that is currently her favourite)

LePamplemousseMousse Mon 09-Sep-13 14:55:17

A close family member has 'put dibs' on a names three times. First was years before either of us was pregnant and I just made a mental note it was out of bounds as it was her favourite name, and she did use it years later.

Second time was when I was pregnant (she wasn't) and wanted to make sure I didn't use another of her favourite names (it was OK as it wasn't on my list anyway, but I was a bit hmm that it had happened again).

Third time we're both pregnant, and the 'reserved' name was one that she was aware was on my list from the last pregnancy. I was a bit miffed. We've both now settled on different names so again it's fine. If I have another baby I'm considering getting in there first and bagging one of my own though! grin

I think as a rule of thumb, if you are both already pregnant and there's one name only that you'd want to use, then it's OK to say 'listen, there is only one name we love and I'm worried that it's going to get used - can I see if this is on your list?'. If not, then I think any name is fair game and we all have to take our chances if someone uses it first. I can see the IVF situation is a tough one though as if she's been TTC for years she must have seen a lot of names she likes bestowed on other babies.

I certainly don't think anyone gets to reserve a few names just in case, especially if they already know they are on your'd be kind to compromise on this one but any more is a proper cheek...

YoMamma Mon 09-Sep-13 15:24:50

I have slightly more info now (sorry to drip feed).....

The name is Evelyn (I would pronounce it Ev-lin) which she wants to shorten to use the nn Evie. I personally view Evie as a different name (tho I accept that this may be a more obvious shortening if you pronounce Evelyn eve-lin).

Is it reasonable to suggest a compromise whereby I don't shorten to Evie so that she can either use the name Evie or use it as a shortened version of another name e.g. Evangeline? Or would the names be too similar anyway? And of course I won't necessarily have control over what my DD wants to shorten her name to in the long run....?

I am doing my best to think of complete alternatives in order to avoid any problems. (I like the suggestion that I have the opportunity to 'be graceful').

I think my problem with the issue is that there's a potential to be arguing over names like we're naming a pet or doll and forgetting that there is a little human involved who deserves a nice name!!

DontmindifIdo Mon 09-Sep-13 15:35:24

so she's more interested in the shortened version? I'd go with Evelyn for your DD, tell your SIL you won't shorten to Evie if she'd like to use one of the other names that can be shortened to Evie and just make sure in your DH's family you always say full name (even if you don't with your family or at school). You could say that as it's after your Godmother, she was never shortened (even if her name was!).

EnjoyEverySandwich Mon 09-Sep-13 15:35:57

Call her Evelyn and ignore anything anybody says. There's nothing to stop her calling her daughter (IF she eve has one) Evelyn, and if they shortened it as you say, it would be different.

Honestly, I just don't get the fuss that people make of this. There are two Catherines in my extended family and it really isn't an issue as they don't have the same spelling or nicknames.

DontmindifIdo Mon 09-Sep-13 15:38:15

Oh and if she really loved the name, she wouldn't have a whole list (even if she said it was the favorite on her list), she would just have the name. The very fact it's still a list suggests she's not picked a name yet as a final one with her DH.

NotYoMomma Mon 09-Sep-13 19:09:50

im pregnant atm and we told bil our name options.

he promptly named his new cat one of them.

I was raging inside. obv wouldnt say anything but you do get irritated anyway. I imagine sil would be gutted so maybe a heads up that you had already chosen it or something before dd arrives?

EnjoyEverySandwich Mon 09-Sep-13 21:24:50

I certainly wouldn't let a cat interfere with my naming plans.

teatimesthree Mon 09-Sep-13 21:30:20

Don't use it. Be kind, be graceful, be generous. It will affect SIL's relationship with you, and with your future DD. What if she never gets pregnant? It will be a permanent kick in the teeth.

It sucks for you not to be able to use the name you love, and that is meaningful, but it sucks far more for her to have had this horrible experience of infertility.

Please don't do it. xxx

NotYoMomma Mon 09-Sep-13 23:09:35

I'm not naming my child after some awful looking cat that hasn't even had its jabs and for them to claim I stole their cats name

(they would)

EnjoyEverySandwich Mon 09-Sep-13 23:17:08

You wouldn't be naming it after the cat though, not if you thought of the name first.

LillyNotOfTheValley Tue 10-Sep-13 04:21:16

I am the last one of 5 siblings and DH of 6 so most of "our names" have been used before we actually even thought of having children. Yes it pissed me off seeing my list gradually reduced to shreds but we got over it! Having a baby is a couple's experience meaning that they will probably think that any name that had been mentioned by someone else will not suit their child. We had this with many many names. Go for your favourite OP: she might not have a DD, you have a special connection, different nicknames and she may find something else she loves better! And if she does not understand that she is a bit of a childish brat, not worth your time and effort.

DontmindifIdo Tue 10-Sep-13 11:28:59

The cat will most likely be dead before your DD hits teenage years, particularly if they don't bother giving it jabs. Your DD will "wear" that name long after anyone has remembered the cat.

CruCru Tue 10-Sep-13 12:11:29

What's the cat's name? I can't imagine a cat with any of the current names going around.

Leopoldina Tue 10-Sep-13 12:19:34

the name has massive significance for you. The two children (should there be two children, who are both girls) will not spend their lives in the same room. Evelyn and Evie are different names.
Use the name you chose for good and special reason and with a clear conscience.

helsbells2609 Tue 10-Sep-13 13:14:22

I have told everyone I know what my baby names are and if someone used one of them I would be LIVID!! I had a name I liked years ago and one of my friends stole it for her dog, I still don't know if it was intentional or not......!!

EnjoyEverySandwich Tue 10-Sep-13 13:47:57

I'd still give my child the name if I liked it that much. As Leopoldina said, kids aren't welded together.

MrsDibble Tue 10-Sep-13 17:48:19

I agree with Don'tmindifIdo - probably best not to start off by mentioning what MIL has said. Probably MIL is making a mountain out of a molehill.

You could change the middle name to another flower name, but I don't think in the end you can be told you are not allowed to name after your godmother. Ultimately, no, you can't have dibs on a name.

Probably SIL is more focussed on actually getting pregnant rather than fussing about dibs on names.

We didn't tell anyone our plannted names for dd, and when she was born it turns out that my brother (not yet married or trying for a baby!) always wanted a daughter called that. But he wasn't really bothered- too late to do anything about it anyway!

Anecdotally, my MIL had a name in my for dh when she was pregnant and her sister went and gave it to her son who was born during MIL's pregnancy. Not sure if she knew about MIL's plans or not as it is a common name. MIL then went for another name that sounds similar but is not nearly as nice. DH has often mentioned this is he is not keen on the name he ended up with!

NotYoMomma Tue 10-Sep-13 19:46:41

its more of a bil issue tgan a name issue. I think he would go on and on about it and piss me off rather than just picking another name.

rallytog1 Wed 11-Sep-13 07:51:48

Use whatever name you like.

When I was pregnant my brother phoned me specifically to give me a list of names that I wasn't "allowed" to use because he and his wife had already chosen for their (as yet unconceived) LOs. I was so cross with him that I would have been tempted to use one of them just to annoy him, had they not all been such ridiculous names.

liquidstate Wed 11-Sep-13 08:29:24

My sister was born two weeks before my cousin. When my mum phoned my aunt and announced her name my aunt was taken aback to find it was the same name she had set her heart on but had never mentioned. My mum did not choose our names until we were born and my sister had already been registered.

Anyhow I have a sister and a cousin with the same name. I also have a cousin with my name. Several other cousins and their children share names too, most decided and talked about before the birth. It helps that most of the names are ones that can be shortened so one has the long version the other short (think Kate and Katherine). Funnily enough we are best friends with our namesake!

I think your SIL is being unreasonable to ask you to not use the name, she may have a boy, she may not have children, she may end up adopting and not be able to choose a new name. Use the name you want.

PenelopeLane Wed 11-Sep-13 09:27:29

My sister asked me not to use DS's name when I was pregnant with him as she wanted to keep it for a future son she might have.

It was a really really hard decision what to do about it, but in the end, DH and I felt like we had to use it as in honesty is was the only name we both loved and had been our #1 boy name from quite early in pregnancy. Anything else would have felt like a compromise. Also, Dsis had had a son about 8 months before DS and not used said name - it might have been different had she never had a son at that point. It was a really hard decision though, and when we did decide to use it for certain after DS was born, I was careful to tell her first and tried to be sensitive to the fact I'd done something potentially very upsetting to her.

I don't regret using it either, and am glad I did. First, DS really suits it, and I was lucky that my sister was really gracious about it in the end. And lastly, while my sister has had another baby since, it was a girl and she's not planning on any more, so had I not used the name, it never would have been used by her either.

Not sure if that helps ...

thegreylady Wed 11-Sep-13 11:26:39

I have two cousins named Margaret-they were born a few months apart and the mum of Margaret 1 was sister to the dad of Margaret 2.It never caused any problems at all.M1 was named for her paternal grandma and M2 because they liked the name.
If we were talking about them we added the appropriate surname.

DumDum32 Wed 11-Sep-13 11:39:07

Me n my sis-in-law were due a month apart & she took the name we wanted but im not bitter about it as sis-in-law gave birth first (first come first serve) We both had gals & the name i chose for my daughter absolutely Suits her. It took us longer to come up with another name but i wouldnt change it for the world smile

I have to say calling dibs on a name & not be pregnant is stupid but perhaps u can put it more nicely then that smile

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