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Exactly the same name

119 replies

Puddinggulper · 24/01/2023 17:21

DH and I are expecting our first child. We’re keeping the sex a surprise but if it is one particular sex then we have one particularly favourite name.

We’ve had this name picked out for this gender for a few years, before we were even pregnant.

The issue is - we have family friends, almost like unofficial relatives, who had a baby of the opposite gender who named the baby with this name - the name is unisex. No real issue you might think - however, funnily enough the family friend married someone with our exact same surname, although completely unrelated. So although the baby is the opposite gender, if we named ours what we wanted they would both have the exact same first name AND surname. They also live fairly close so could conceivably end up at the same school. Although theirs would be in the school year above.

We were gutted when we found out they’d used the name and throughout the pregnancy have tried to think of another we like as much but we just can’t. I know no one owns a name but would you still use it?

OP posts:
sunshinesobeautiful · 24/01/2023 23:54

Puddinggulper · 24/01/2023 19:26

The consensus on here seems to be not use it which is really interesting. The family friends are on my DHs side and he doesn’t care and wants to use it. My sister in law said we should go ahead and use and my sister doesn’t think it’s a big deal and that I’m overthinking it. I’m not sure if that’s because they know the context better and I’ve not explained it well on here - they aren’t close friends, they’re family friends we see maybe twice a year at weddings/bbqs.

What if they are just wanting to be polite, though, and are not saying what they're really thinking? 🤔

sunshinesobeautiful · 24/01/2023 23:58

Imo Ronan is much nicer than Rowan anyway Smile

Rockmehardplace · 25/01/2023 01:11

thats so strange, i just knew it was going to be Rowan! i have a friend with a boy Rowan and i loved it for a girl and she was NOT happy at the idea of me using the same name (I had a boy in the end anyway).
How does the friend pronounce it for a girl? I would have used Row-an (Row as in row a boat), same as the boy version, but i’ve met 2 girl Rowan’s pronounced Row-an (Row as in having a row with someone).

VivienneDelacroix · 25/01/2023 01:30

Rowan was a name we had on the list for DS2, but a friend called her daughter Rowan, so we decided against it. (Surnames very different and we don't live near each other, but it just felt unfair to my friend- it is a gorgeous name though).
Other names we considered (just in case we gave similar tastes) were:
Laurie (really regret not using this).
Guillaume (but DH convinced me that no one would know how to say it and I'd get annoyed!).

VivienneDelacroix · 25/01/2023 01:31

Oh, I forgot Tristan to above list. Love Tristan.

RitaFromThePitCanteen · 25/01/2023 01:42

How about Lowen? It's Cornish, unisex and means joy. Other names that similar vibes:


Tryingwithheart · 25/01/2023 02:21

Imagine if they grew up and fell in love and had their own rowan. They could all share monogramed towels ... Sorry it just popped into my head.

Tbh I wouldn't use it. What about Owen? Or lohan?

quietnightmare · 25/01/2023 02:23


quietnightmare · 25/01/2023 02:26


ZeldaWillTellYourFortune · 25/01/2023 03:24

Purplecatshopaholic · 24/01/2023 17:57

Of you can use the same name. And I’m surprised you’re even asking! Use the name you like!

This. Use the name you like. Don't overthink. They will have long lives with very little overlap.

Pinkdafodils · 25/01/2023 08:21

Imagine if they grew up and fell in love and had their own rowan. They could all share monogramed towels ...


Mummytobe333 · 25/01/2023 09:09

There’s so many lovely names in the world - for the sake of your baby please find them something else ❤️ I would be so annoyed my parents continued to call me the exact same name

Shoogly · 25/01/2023 09:52

Initially I thought you shouldn't use the name because I read it as being they were such close friends you thought of them as family. That would definitely be weird to use the same name. If they're not actually close friends of yours I wouldn't worry.

Billslills · 25/01/2023 10:44

I would use it. You will regret it forever otherwise. I think it would be more confusing for family if you called him a close variation such as Rohan.

LittleLottle · 25/01/2023 11:48

Use it. In my husband's family there are 3 cousins with the same name and one with the feminine version, as well as uncles and half cousins etc. Yes it gets a bit confusing but really not the end of the world! We just say big Harry, baby Harry, Harriet, granda Harry etc etc when we're all together!

UnicornRainbowSky · 25/01/2023 15:54

A friend of mine recently used the girl name we had earmarked. She has a completely different surname and even lives a 3 hour drive away but I still wouldn't be able to use the name now. It's taken. I was really sad for a bit but have now found a name I like equally much. I'd find it mega weird if a close friend of mind called their baby the same name as my child's, ESPECIALLY if they had the same surname!
Can you make Rowan the middle name?

User76765 · 25/01/2023 16:03

You just can't. Your child will forever be known as Boy Rowan Smith or male Rowan Smith. The spelling will make no difference at all because the confusion will come when people are speaking.

I actually think its an awful boys name but that's by the by if you like it. I'd chose something similar but that isn't pronounced like rowan. How about Owen?

ThomasinaLivesHere · 25/01/2023 16:12

I had the exact same name as someone in another year at school. It didn’t cause any issues in school. I only found out about it near end of school as someone mentioned it. They’re not going to be in same circles apart from a few times a year. It’s really not going to have the impact some are saying.

SalviaOfficinalis · 25/01/2023 16:19

Just think of Rowan Atkinson… that should be enough to put you off.

Other suggestions

I really wouldn’t use the same first and surname as someone else.

Squamata · 25/01/2023 16:27

I'd just use it. Chances are one of them will end up going by a nickname anyway.

Or if they move house, you'll regret not calling your kid the name you wanted!

Squamata · 25/01/2023 16:28

Pinkdafodils · 25/01/2023 08:21

Imagine if they grew up and fell in love and had their own rowan. They could all share monogramed towels ...


I know a lesbian marred couple with the same first name and they double barrelled their names. So they've got the same name. Have to use their middle name initial to differentiate post!

MuggleMe · 25/01/2023 16:35

Just use it. You're saying they might go to the same secondary in a different year, so not like 2/30 in primary class. They'll be an adult for the majority of their life and won't have much to do with each other.


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HangingOver · 26/01/2023 02:41

They'll be an adult for the majority of their life and won't have much to do with each other.

This! I can't see it being that big of a deal to be honest. We had two boys in the same year with the same name at my secondary school and it really wasn't a big deal. They weren't in the same friendship group so it didn't end up causing that much confusion.

User76765 · 26/01/2023 05:42

The cousin will be posting here in a few months and everyone will tell her you’re batshit to copy her baby’s exact name..

lifeinthehills · 26/01/2023 05:59

I'd go for it. It's been in your heart for years. Just do it. It's a lovely name.

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