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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.


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.

AttilaTheMeerkat Tue 09-Jul-13 17:07:04

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.

AttilaTheMeerkat Tue 09-Jul-13 17:26:34

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.

AttilaTheMeerkat Tue 09-Jul-13 17:29:47

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


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