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How To Handle Baby Name Regret

Mar08

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Alpha Mom Lesson LearnedA few weeks after I gave birth to my second daughter, I looked at that precious little girl and thought to myself,  “I love you so much and I really don’t like your name.” There was nothing wrong with the name exactly. I just didn’t love it. And it wasn’t her.

During my pregnancy, I never paid much attention to our choice of girl’s name. Because I just knew in my heart, I was having a boy. It just felt like a boy and how could a mother be wrong? This mother was very wrong.

I didn’t tell anyone about my baby name regret. But I never called my daughter by her name. I mostly called her “the baby.” I would bristle when others called her by her name which is ridiculous because what else were they supposed to call her? My hope was that I would just get used to the name and I was too exhausted from taking care of a newborn and a toddler to figure out what to do.

But after 6 months, I burst.

I finally confided to a friend, “I really don’t like my daughter’s name and I don’t know what to do about it.”  And then I started crying.

I looked for signs that she thought I should be in a mental institution. But she was very supportive. I was relieved. Maybe I wasn’t crazy after all?! Telling my husband was more difficult.

“What do you mean it isn’t her name? Of course it’s her name! That’s what I’ve been calling her,” he responded completely confused.

But it wasn’t her name. And I should have spoken up months earlier. He finally agreed to change it. We renamed our daughter Summer and I knew it was perfect.  Was it awkward to change my kid’s name at 8 months?! Hell yes. But I never regretted my decision. Not for once second.

Not every mom makes this choice.

An online acquaintance, Melissa Banks (name has been changed), told me how she regretted her daughter’s name the minute she announced it. By six months, she was convinced they needed to change it but her husband loved it. “A part of me also believed only ‘crazy’  people change their kid’s name so I felt totally trapped. I had to remind myself there wasn’t a right or wrong choice, just a different road to be taken,” Banks says.

By the time Banks and her husband came up with a new name, she felt like her daughter had grown into her original name so they decided to stick with it.  But Banks does think moms should be given more time to hold, feed and get to know their baby before being pressured into picking a name.

“The hospital comes in with the paperwork before you even get a second to shower after labor!”

Not only should you take time to get to know your baby a bit before settling on a name but make sure you love the name. This can be difficult when moms and dads disagree on what to call a child. Now that I’m pregnant again, my husband texts me with the most ridiculous ideas for names so this could once again be a challenge.

And if you do have feelings of baby name regret, open up about it to your spouse and friends as soon as possible. You are not crazy (I promise!) and you will find the right answer for you and your family. Feel free to contact me and I will assure you that it is perfectly normal to feel this way and you will find a solution.

As for Summer (who is now 6), her old name is part of her history.  In fact, her siblings get jealous that they don’t have a former name.  She loves to tell people that she wasn’t always named Summer and I just know that as a rebellious teen, she’ll probably threaten to change it back.  But for me, she’ll always be my Summer.

About the author

Kelcey Kintner

http://www.mamabirddiaries.com/
Kelcey Kintner writes the humor blog, The Mama Bird Diaries and co-founded the cheeky advice site, The Mouthy Housewives. This Columbia Journalism School graduate also drives a gold minivan because you can't fit five kids on a Vespa. An award winning journalist, she still secretly longs to be an Olympic ice skater. You can follow her on Twitter @mamabirddiaries.


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61 Responses to “How To Handle Baby Name Regret”

  1. Tara Mar 08 at 6:22 am Reply Reply

    What was the original?? I’m dying to know!

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Kintner Mar 09 at 12:08 am Reply Reply

      Sorry that I didn’t share the original name! I just know that there are girls out there with this name and it’s perfect for them so I didn’t want to be disrespectful.

      • Stefania Jul 22 at 12:03 pm Reply Reply

        I can completely relate to your story.  Only you seem stronger about it than I am.  I had a very difficult time naming my 1st daughter and when we found out we were having another girl, it was even harder.  The 1st time we chose a name right before she was born, and I was happy with our choice.  The 2nd time we names her when she was a day old.  The next day I wasn’t happy with it but my husband was.  A week later I was still unhappy but he thought it would just take me time to get used to it.  My family and friends all LOVED the name.  I get compliments all the time.  Now she’s one and I still have the same regret.  I feel guilt and sadness about it.  I worry about changing it.  It’s hard even for me to get used to calling her something else and I worry she will not like that we changed it either.  My husband is tired of hearing about it.  I don’t know what to do! 

      • Kayla May 20 at 6:43 pm Reply Reply

        This is the first time ive ever actually admitted it out loud, but I dont like my sons name either. And the sad part is that he is almost 4. Im sure that makes me a terrible mother. I guess I just always thought I would get used to it. I tried switching it around and calling him nicknames, etc. I just never found a nickname that I loved. Most of the time I just call him my “angel” or “baby.” I feel horrible about it. I think he knows what his name is. But im sure it confuses him sometimes that I never call him by his name that much. I feel terrible :/

        • Lisa Sep 08 at 6:09 am Reply Reply

          For the first 4 years of my life, everyone called me by my middle name – then my Mom felt that name was not right for me and asked everyone to switch to my first name (after asking me if that was ok). It’s never too late – I’ve turned out just fine (I hope ;))

  2. Ally Mar 08 at 9:48 am Reply Reply

    It’s funny how strongly some people feel about names. My husband and I haven’t agreed much, so what we do is we each pick a name and then leave it up to hair color. When my third was born we couldn’t agree on a boy’s name. I picked a name for a dark haired boy and he picked a name for a light haired boy. He had light hair, so my husband got him name. We obviously had to be ok with each other’s choices. I’m so glad my husband got his pick, because now I love his name. 

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Kintner Mar 09 at 12:01 am Reply Reply

      That is a very original way to do it! Love it.

      • Ambaa Oct 09 at 2:29 pm Reply Reply

        I’ll have to try this! Cause with my genetics there is almost no chance the baby could be light haired :) 

  3. Kate F. Mar 08 at 11:02 am Reply Reply

    We used traditional family names for both kids, with less traditional nicknames. I messed up the communication of it w our son Thomas–I was embarrassed that the nickname we wanted to use, Tuck, was also the name of my husband’s grad school. So we started w Tucker on the birth announcement, and used it for about 5-6 months. I HATED it (just not right for him or us) and of course he got everything from blankets to a stool personalized as gifts. Plus I’ve spent the last 2 years trying to get everyone to switch to the nickname we always intended to use. We were much more careful w our daughter!

  4. Lisanam Mar 08 at 12:00 pm Reply Reply

    With our second, she was unnamed for four days.  My parents, the hospital, my friends were all pressuring us to chose her name, but nothing felt right.  We needed to get to know this little person a bit before choosing her name.  I’m so glad that we stood up to all the pressure to find the right name for her.  

  5. J Mar 08 at 2:07 pm Reply Reply

    I completely agree with this! It is weird beyond weird to me how people “announce” what their child will be named before they even meet this person, but maybe that is because my own parents always waited until they met us kids to name us. To be quite honest it kind of worries/bugs me when parents announce the name ahead of time.

    Of course, my parents had ideas and lists of names they liked in mind, but they said they did not know for several days after I was born what I should be named for sure. Like “Lisanam,” my parents were pressured a lot by the hospital and family to name me quickly, but I am really glad they took that time! I have always loved my name and felt it suited me in all ages/stages of my life. It’s just me! :)

    I really enjoyed the honesty in this article. I have always wondered if any parents felt regret after naming their child so soon and without meeting him/her. Thanks for the insight!

  6. Annie W Mar 08 at 2:07 pm Reply Reply

    I had a few doubts after my little girl was born, but had chosen family names that I loved for both her first and middle names.  How could I go to my family and say I had changed my mind?  Plus, in my religion the baby is given the name in a ceremony, and we had already done that too!  But here we are, she’s 8 months old, and I LOVE her names!  I’m glad I didn’t change them!

  7. A Mar 08 at 2:45 pm Reply Reply

    I’m one of those annoying women who name their babies in utero! My first daughter’s name was one my husband and I both loved and announced when we found out that she was a girl. My third child, a boy, we named after my father and grandfather (with a different nickname) and announced with the 20 week ultrasound as well.

    My middle daughter was harder. At 20 weeks we still hadn’t decided on a name, but found out that she might not live to be born. She did survive but I was never sold on the name my husband picked out. It took constant repetition for me to really feel like her name fit her. Now I think it’s a beautiful, classic name and I’m glad I stuck with it. There was so much uncertainty around her birth it felt like her name was an anchor to keep her in this world.

    I still think that every mom/dad has the right to change their mind if that baby shows up and is a Jennifer and not a Tiffani (my cousin’s birth story).

  8. zinna Mar 08 at 3:01 pm Reply Reply

    My MIL came home as Female Lastname. It took her parents two weeks to name her. They still sometimes that her name is fuh-mah-lee.

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Kintner Mar 09 at 12:04 am Reply Reply

      Female Lastname is a beautiful name! :) I think it’s great when people take time to figure out the right name.

  9. R Mar 08 at 3:49 pm Reply Reply

    My first refused to reveal her gender before birth, so we had no opportunity of naming her before she arrived. I was so struck at the wonder of meeting her, whole and new, for the first time! Her name, chosen several hours after birth was and is exactly right for her. With my second, I refused to learn her sex ahead of time but had a list of 5-6 names for each. She came out so wholly unique and unexpected that as I tried those names one by one, none of them fit. We had to start all over in the delivery room, but again, we found the perfect fit, even though it took 24 hours or more. I’m now pregnant with girl #3 (my daughters bullied us into finding out at the US) and I’m ready to take all the time in the world to name her – hospital paperwork-lady be damned! 

  10. Karen Mar 08 at 4:22 pm Reply Reply

    A friend of mine changed her son’s name shortly after his 1st birthday. It was no big deal. Not sure how she handles the pics of “Happy Birthday Old Name” on his cake, but I don’t think anyone cares. Good for you!

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Kintner Mar 09 at 12:05 am Reply Reply

      My daughter Summer’s baby book is filled with her old name from the birth announcement to cards. But it’s okay. Because her old name is just a part of her!

  11. tango november whisky Mar 08 at 5:24 pm Reply Reply

    I totally thought we’d go to the hospital with a narrowed-down list of names and name him when we met him. Then my husband mentioned a name for our son and it really stuck with me. So we have a name and 4 weeks left til he’s due. It was a ‘wedding dress’ moment for me. I just knew. :)

  12. Heather Mar 08 at 9:51 pm Reply Reply

    On three occasions, I went to the hospital with my short list. Each time, we took the whole 4 day stay to think about and try on a name(s). I never felt bad about taking a long time. But people had the hardest time understanding what took so long to name the baby!
    To me, it is a huge deal! It takes 9 months to make the list, and then you’ve got to see the baby & match the right name. I do have a tiny bit of regret on my daughter – we call her by her middle name. But I think her first name suits her better. She is almost 3 so the middle name is it.

  13. Autumn Mar 08 at 10:25 pm Reply Reply

    We wanted the surprise when the baby was born so we didn’t find out ahead of time, but I was convinced I was having a boy.  We had our girl name right away (like at 2 months), and a short list of boy names, but the leader I just never felt like it flowed.  I’m so glad she is a she because my Mr just didn’t understand why I didn’t like the “flow” of the boy name. 

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Kintner Mar 09 at 12:07 am Reply Reply

      Sometimes it all works out the way it’s meant to!

  14. Kacie Mar 09 at 12:18 pm Reply Reply

    I’m wondering — if you aren’t settled on a name AFTER the birth, do people take that as an open opportunity to start making lots of suggestions/demanding to know what you’re working with? EEP!

  15. Charmi Mar 12 at 12:51 am Reply Reply

    My parents felt this way 31 years ago and decided even though I was six months old they would change my name. So they did it. And it’s never been an issue. Just in case you’re still thinking about it.

  16. Charmi Mar 12 at 1:14 am Reply Reply

    Ah! You did it! I missed that bit (it’s late and the baby’s keeping me up). Good for you guys :)

  17. Katherine Mar 12 at 6:23 am Reply Reply

    I like in the UK, and here you have six weeks to “register” the birth, where the official birth certificate and name is issued.  It does take a lot of the pressure off to get a name right away…from the hospital, at least! The families still want to know right away. 

    For my daughter, we had a short-list boys and girls names and decided to see the baby to make the decision. I  must say, though, it still wasn’t clear after looking at her little face! I still wanted to call her our nickname we used while she was in utero. In the end, we just picked one. It took a day or two to get used to not calling her the nickname, and now I can’t picture her as anything else but Felicity. 

  18. LBH Mar 12 at 9:22 pm Reply Reply

    We named our firstborn…actually before we were ever pregnant..or married. I had a dream when we were engaged that we had a baby (in the dream, I never knew if it was a boy or a girl) and the baby’s name stuck with me. We decided if it ever happened for us, we’d go with that name regardless of whether it was a boy or a girl and we did. Never regretted it once.  Now, the grandparents… they took some convincing–ha ha.  But yeah. I understand wanting to “know” the baby before you name him or her–that makes sense to me. But sometimes, the name belongs to them before they’re even here. 

  19. Mommaof4 Jun 18 at 1:19 pm Reply Reply

    I too had baby name regret. I had a hard pregnancy and truly believe I wasn’t coming home with a baby so it didn’t matter what we named him. Even after he was born and healthy despite knot in umbilical cord I truly didn’t believe he would come home with me. Nurse came in to have me sign the paperwork and I put the name we had discussed but not the name I felt was his name. He wasn’t coming home with me I thought. I too called him “the baby” and it annoyed me when people called him by his name. At 5 weeks I discussed it with my husband and at 7 weeks we changed his name. To the name he should have had from the beginning. He is definitely better suited to his “new” name. Best decision we made was changing his name and we have never looked back.

  20. kelly Aug 21 at 10:59 am Reply Reply

    for 37 weeks i debated, stewed, hemmed and hawed and could not for the life of me decide on my (now 12 week old) sons middle name. i wanted one name. my husband wanted another. and yet my mother wanted another. they brought me the birth certificate paperwork in the hospital immediately after delivery and i was just not ready to make the big decision. they came in to my room on fifteen different occasions asking me if i was ready to turn the papers in. i just couldn’t do it. so finally on the final day, and after being hounded by hospital staff for four days, and being threatened that we couldn’t go home with an unnamed baby, i made the decision to honor my mother. and i regret it everyday. i have caught myself calling him the name that i wanted to use. and every time i hear someone call him by the given name, i cringe.

  21. Katie Aug 25 at 11:40 pm Reply Reply

    I am deeply struggling with this. We named our daughter and while I was pregnant everyone that we talked to loved it which made us love it even more. But now whenever I am asked her name people give confused looks and mispronounce it, which makes my skin crawl! I read that it is one of the most hated girls names but has risen from #800 to #488 in popularity so that gives me some hope, but I don’t want her to struggle. My friends and family keep reassuring me that I should not care about what other ppl think–but I don’t want her to struggle and I am starting to really not like it. It also doesn’t roll off of my tongue. I think it’s a bit difficult to say. She is 4 months now. I am also concerned because we have announced it on Facebook, so now for us to change it may leave us susceptible to judgement. her middle name is Kate. I thought about just calling her that. My husband gets upset when I talk about it and tells me that we named her what we named her and we aren’t changing it. I would feel ridiculous but I think about it everyday. Multiple times a day.

    • Jennifer May 18 at 6:02 pm Reply Reply

      Hi Katie,

      I am in the same boat. We had a healthy, beautiful  daughter after  a high risk pregnancy. We Did not know the gender ahead of time. We were 100 percent decided on a boys name, but not on a girls. We thought when we see her we will know. Well, we had to a few other names that were considered and decided on an Irish name (that we did not consider until about 3weeks prior).  It was a surname and found out too that many name websites hated  it due to its trendiness, masculine meaning ( i only heard this as a girls name) My family loved it and my husbands I think were disappointed we did not go with his great great grandmothers name.  I liked her name and the way it looks on paper, but feel I would have been happier and safer with his family name or one of our other classics. I have been thinking of moving her name to middle and giving her a classic first name, but still may call her her nickname that we have been from her given first name.  

  22. Maria Aug 28 at 9:10 am Reply Reply

    I am so glad that where I come from most people don’t name their babies until 1-3 months after their birth, I am having a baby next march and I will have plenty of time to think of the perfect name, I think there is only one person I know who was named at the hospital

  23. Anna Sep 11 at 8:07 pm Reply Reply

    Hey Katie i totally get it!!If you don’t likE your child name,I would def change now!than regret rest of your life!they is not a laws that says You have to stay with the name that you dont like!!

  24. Laura Feb 06 at 3:19 pm Reply Reply

    http://alphamom.com/pregnancy/how-to-handle-baby-name-regret/
    Hi. I came across your story of your daughters name and wanted to contact you. My daughter is 6 weeks old and like you I felt totally pressured into her name. 
    I feel unable to change it because I’m scared I live to regret the change but I constantly wish I could turn back time and picked a different name to start with and avoided these feelings. I no irrational as cannot turn back time and every other day I change my mind as to what I would change it to so am I being ridiculous?
    Thanks
    Laura x

    Sent from my iPad

  25. Moxie Feb 09 at 11:58 pm Reply Reply

    I also had tremendous name regret. It wasn’t that the name didn’t fit my daughter is that everyone kept confusing the name I picked for another name (a name that I hate!) so I got sick of it and changed her name after she turned one. It was a hassle and a bit expensive and super awkward. I actually got new announcements made with her new name. I was worried about how weird it was to change a child’s name and was worried that people would think I was crazy so I just keep her old first name as her middle name. I got a lot of odd looks and some even laughed at me when I told them, but I’m still happy with my choice. I was very unsure out what name to pick for her, but I literally thought I could not leave the hospital without a name. My parents and I didn’t know what to do so we looked through a book and picked a name under was felt like tremendous pressure. I hate the idea of naming a baby this way. I think you need at least a week to see how a name “works” with your kid.

  26. Keri Jul 30 at 9:20 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you for this. It’s comforting to know that people struggle with names and that some even change them! I struggled with our son’s name as we named him something my dad (and husband eventually ended up liking) over a name we both wanted and I had been calling the baby before giving birth. Then for 8 weeks I struggled with ppd and his name didn’t help matters any. At 6 weeks, and after a lot of discussions we changed his name to the one we originally were thinking (another great reason to not reveal names till after birth). It went over well and most everyone made the change nicely. Now our son is 3 years old, and the whole regret name thing still haunts me every now and then. He now has 3 middle names (originally he had two and then we just added his new name as his new first name and moved the original first name to his first middle). I know, confusing. This honored my husband’s wishes and my dad’s but of course now he has more names than royalty and I’m still struggling with it. Most people ask us why he has so many names! My sister in law just right now asked me and it sent me into a bit of a tailspin. I feel silly. And I wish it wouldn’t keep haunting me. Suggestions??

  27. Véronique Sep 11 at 12:05 am Reply Reply

    Hello, I just started reading articles and posts about regretting a baby’s name and I found this site. I felt as if I were the one writing it! Same exact situation. We did not know if our second baby was a boy or a girl, but I really thought it was a boy so we had decided on Nathan We actually talked about baby girl names, but could not really agree on one. The baby finally came and it was a girl. I was thrilled, but the name talk with my husband was not very conclusive. We ended up giving her an Irish name, that I actually like in writing, but we are French speakers so people don’t pronounce her name right and I finally realized that I actually don’t like her name. So, just like you, I am calling her “the baby”, hoping this feeling just will go away. But now, I am reading about unique names and the effect it can have on someone’s life and I feel terrible for my daughter :S My daughter is just 1 month and a half old and my own family has just started pronouncing her name right… I really feel like changing her name, but my husband likes her name and is not really happy about my thoughts. I know people would think I am “weird”, but I rather be happy with another name than be miserable…

  28. Steph Oct 16 at 9:26 am Reply Reply

    I am so glad this forum exists and I am not the only one feeling that way. I have not spoken to anyone regarding my feelings as they go back and forth. Quite frankly I am feeling a little crazy and “unstable”.
    During the pregnancy of our second son I was very emotional and a little sad (that I wasn’t ever going to have a daughter) but I soon got over that and my hubby and I started thinking of names. Well, I was the only one ever suggesting names and him not liking any. One day I finally found a name that I absolutely LOVED (at the time) and my hubby once again didn’t like my choice. He never did suggest alternatives. It event went as far as going to counseling because we had other marital issues and also talked about the naming conflict. My hubby eventually came around and agreed to my name choice (a bit of an unusual name) but wanted to add an extra letter. I first didn’t like his idea and said no. I was so stuck on the name however I agreed to it and it goes well with his second name so I grew to like it. Now however, after all this I am starting to have doubts and wished I would have picked a more traditional name. I am not comfortable with the spelling and I feel like I can’t say anything to my hubby as he is so proud for adding the extra letter when people say they like it. My first boy has a very popular classic first name and I can’t help but feel sad about the name choice for my second son. He is 14 months now and wonder if I ever brought up the topic name change everyone in my family will declare me for crazy. I just don’t want this to haunt me for the rest of my life. Any tips on how to approach this or is it possible to fall back in love with the name and get used to the spelling?

  29. Lea Oct 19 at 5:35 pm Reply Reply

    Oh my god, I’m so relieved to read that other mothers are going through what I am. My beautiful baby boy is 6 and a half months old and I’m really regretting his name :( it’s a biblical name that I have LOVED for years but my husband hated it throughout my pregnancy and we therefore never road tested it. We road tested several others and fell in love with ‘f’ and called him it for the last month of my pregnancy. I had a really difficult birth and when my husband was holding our baby in his arms he said ‘I think he looks like a j….’ I was like really??! ‘….I was still really undecided though as wed both fell in love with ‘f’ but went with ‘j’ because I’d always loved it and so does everyone else. However…….literally the next day I had an awful feeling of regret which I’ve experienced every single day since to the point where I’m driving myself insane. On top of this people mispronounce his name constantly which i never thought would happen because it’s such a classic name and I bristle with every mispronunciation. Even when I introduce him to people , I don’t feel proud of his name and that makes me feel so guilty because he’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I’ve mentioned it to my husband who got annoyed and my mam said if over analysed his name so much that there’s nothing left. I feel so unsupported and that if I changed his name people will think I’m a joke. I also don’t think ‘f’ will be as well received as ‘j’. To top it all off I hate the way my husband says his name!! He initially thought it was a very weak name (hence why he hated it throughout pregnancy) and he puts lots of emphasis of the second syllable and it sounds horrible. Sorry for such a long post but wanted to explain my troubled exhausted brain!!! Please help!!!! What would I say to people if I change it?????? What if I make the wrong decision (again!)

  30. Mummyto4 Oct 27 at 8:18 pm Reply Reply

    I thought it was just me!! So relieved to read all these as I don’t know anyone else who feels the same. Mine is slightly more unusual as I have only recently gone off my sons name…and he is 8! The annoying thing is we had another name throughout pregnancy but just before he was born I went off the name and started liking this quite unusual (for the UK anyway!) name which I have always liked. When he was born everyone would give me funny looks or ask how to spell it. Some people were so rude! I had a few people ask me what was I thinking but it still didn’t put me off. I loved it….until a few weeks ago. My good friend had a baby and called it the name we were going to use. Now I’m obsessed with the name she has called her baby and love it so much and have really gone off my sons name and think the other name should be his name. He even really suits the other name :-(
    I can’t even change his name as he likes it (I think as he has never had issues) and at 8..that would be weird and unfair on him. I haven’t said anything to him but it is so hard. I keep on thinking ‘if only’ and ‘what was I thinking?’! xx

  31. les Nov 18 at 7:20 pm Reply Reply

    Similar thing with me. I was in love with a name the whole time I was pregnant but decided to change the spelling last min. When we came home from the hospital I started feeling regret. I waited until she was six weeks old until I said anything to my husband. Of course he didnt understand right away but eventually agreed to change the spelling to a better way I thought. I thought this change would make it better for me and make me love her name well it didnt. She is six months old and not a day goes by that I dont regret her name. When we are in public and people ask her name I cringe before I say it. I would rather be saying a different name. I dont like to even hear people say it to me. I feel totally bad about feeling this way. I want to just call her by het middle name I adore it. Help should I change it again or live the next fifty years in regret???

  32. Alexandra Nov 25 at 2:28 pm Reply Reply

    I have to comment because I too felt this way when I looked at my first born girl. Mainly too because of a pervious dream I had before she was born. The dream was her as a young women. She looked like me and my husbands sister all in one. She was beautiful and tall and she talked to me. She said, ” mom, why did you name me Heather? I wanted you to name me Isabelle”.

    It was so strange because I was not considering naming her heather. But i cannot recall, thinking back now, if the name Isabelle was what I had in mind or if it came from the dream. It may have been on the list. But I was considering Isabelle after this dream for sure !! You bet! That was very interesting.

    But at the time it was a terribly popular name and I was hearing so many girls choosing it for their baby girls left and right. And so I thought maybe that wouldn’t be so great to have multiple girls in her class have her same name. Was it? Is that something to really worry or care about?
    In the end my husband felt strongly her name was different, that maybe the dream was about another child we could sometime have in the future. And as I was still unsure of what was best, we went with the other name.
    Since we have had two other children, both boys. The name has yet to be used.
    Did my daughters spirit talk to me through that dream? Was it just all in my head? But as we stuck with the other pretty and less popular name, ( she is the only one with it in our circle and school so far) She has now turned 4 years old and started pre school. She met another girl with the name Isabelle. It Actually broke my heart hearing it cause I thought , oh some other mom got to use that name. And that day after school, what does my child say to me? She says, ” mommy why didn’t you name me Isabelle. That name is so beautiful. “. And my heart cried inside. I thought oh my goodness?!? She has never said that about any other name of any other girl she has ever met, lots and lots of other names has she heard. But this one. The ONE. Of course I said well we loved Your name. It’s beautiful too. I actually did think of that name for you and I really thought about it. I just was not sure if it really fit you. Of course i wasn’t going to say that I still think that way but sometimes I regret not going with what the dream girl asked for.

    And now my child is asking for it just like in my dream!

    Thoughts please! Help help. What do I do? Get the papers and change her name? Add Isabelle in now and start calling her that? Could be a coincidence? I wouldn’t even be considering this if it was any other name because of what I felt before. I hear of moms changing it after a few months to a year of age. But she is 4. The name is stuck isn’t it?

  33. wendy Dec 16 at 4:20 am Reply Reply

    My daughter just tured 10 months. She is our 2nd daughter. Our first was easy to name. She is named after my grandma and i love her name and that she is named after someone i loved. We didnt have any otger family names that really meant anything
    I really like famiky names though. Our daughter came early and i feel we just went with her name because we liked it but didnt really talk about it.
    About a week after she was born i realized we could have named her Josephine… Joseph was my dads middle name and i wpuld have loved to have a connection with her and my dad.
    I should have changed it then. I thought i was crazy though and everyone loves her name…so i figured i would get over it.
    Well, 10 months and im not over it. Now i fear she knows her name and if i change it i will do some sort of developmental damage.
    Im so torn!!

  34. Michelle Jan 15 at 9:57 pm Reply Reply

    As others have said I am in the same boat. We didn’t find out what we were having before she was born and I always thought I was having a boy but knew I would be so happy no matter what the gender would be. Well we had a list of top 3 for boy and top 3 for girl and we would wait to decide when we saw him or her. Since we didn’t narrow the list to our number 1 favorite before hand I didn’t do any research on the names. They were just chosen by the way they sounded and looked. She was born and we chose her name. I love the way it sounds but hate what the name means. Everything I have found on the Internet has such a terrible meaning behind it. I started having doubts about her name within the first week we had her home. I thought the doubts would go away and I would eventually love the name. They didn’t and I don’t know if I will ever love her name. I waited until she was 4 weeks to say anything to my husband. He thinks that those meanings don’t really mean anything and we just shouldnt worry about it (easier said than done!) but he is so supportive and loving and will be ok with whatever I choose to do. Well we haven’t actually picked up her birth certificate. Since it hasn’t been issued we can easily change the spelling of her name with almost no record of it previously being spelled differently (we have gifts, facebook posts, etc we won’t be able to change). By doing this it will sound the same, almost look the same (1 letter is diff) but take away all the meanings that I don’t like. It seems like this would be a no brainer and I should change it to be happy but now I worry what others will think.

  35. Anna m Jan 19 at 11:50 pm Reply Reply

    I really dislike my daughters middle name, she’s 11 months now and not a day goes by where I wish I had called her this other name I really, really love. The thing is her middle name is after my mum. So I feel I can’t change it, although I really want to. Infact 3 days after her birth certificate came I had filled in the new paper work from birth death and marriages to add the other name to her name, I walked to the post office and then changed my mind  and didn’t post it, thinking it was ridiculous to give my daughter 2 Middle names. I know I shouldn’t worry because it is only her middle name. But this other name would of been perfect for her. (I have personal reasons why) I just wish I could stop thinking about how I messed her name up and I wish I could stop regretting it every single day, 

  36. R Feb 01 at 10:45 am Reply Reply

    Hi Kelcey,

    What reason did you put on the Change of name form?

    Obviously since I’m here I too have regret. I honestly don’t know how I let it happen and since day one have regretted the name L came home with.

    I too called him ‘the baby’ for the first three months and then after reading this post decided to tell my husband. He is adamant we keep L’s current name. For the moment anyway. I’m still trying to work on him as I can’t imagine calling him L for the rest of my life. At the moment I’m using a shortened version of his name if I have to; otherwise I still avoid it entirely.

    L is now 9 months and starting to plan L’s first birthday. There is no way I can put his name on the invite nor on any of the hall decorations or even the cake. Seeing his name and hearing it makes me feel sick and cringe :( i usually love everything personalised, but anything we have with his name is currently hidden out of sight. I wouldn’t even know how to give a speech at his birthday and use his name. It is such a horrible feeling :(

    And so here I am again, at 2am trying to work out how to change his name :(

    Please let me know what you put on the form. Ideally I just wanted to know if you can actually just be honest and say ‘Mother has name regret’?!

  37. D Mar 04 at 3:44 pm Reply Reply

    I am so glad to read all these comments, I have been feeling so alone. I never imagined I would be in such a situation, but I hate my baby’s name. Even though I told my husband I disliked the name, he refused to consider anything else. After three days of arguing… exhausted, drugged, emotional, in pain, and under pressure from my husband and the hospital, I finally gave in. Almost immediately and every day since, I have begged my husband to let me change it, but he refuses. I never use the name unless I have to identify her in a formal way, I hate saying it, I hate hearing people say it (I have to resist the urge to say “don’t call her that!”…which is crazy, because how would they know?). I basically avoid any situation where I have to say the name, and it is really isolating me. I have also come to hate my husband. I can’t believe he would be so cruel as to let a me go through life hating my child’s name. I can’t sleep at night and cry every day. I wish I could get over this, but I can’t. I just want to be able to call my sweet baby by a name I love.

    • N Mar 24 at 11:09 pm Reply Reply

      De I believe you could follow baby centers advice and create a nickname for the baby. It doesn’t have even to be related to the real name. 
      I’m in the same boat as everyone here except for the fact in my country you CANNOT change a name after giving it to your child. And the name I let my husband out in my baby was his own name, which is associated to poor people, strange and unissex. Thing is, it’s my husband and his own father’s name. So my kid is the III. I let him do it without thinking. Too much of hormones I guess. Now I’ll live forever inregret.

      • D Apr 24 at 6:09 pm Reply Reply

        Thank you, N. I’m so sorry that you are also (really!) stuck with a name you don’t like. It is a terrible feeling, isn’t it? I hope you can find a good nickname for your little one. I have always liked “Trey” for 3rd.. I would be fine with a nickname if my husband would agree, but he won’t. I hope you can forgive yourself for a moment of weakness at such a vulnerable moment in your life (something I struggle with, misled). Hormones really are powerful!

  38. alexsandria Apr 22 at 7:13 pm Reply Reply

    Hey Ladies,
    So i am a new mommy of a Five month old and I am very unhappy with the name I gave her. Half the time I was pregnant I was OK with the name and around 6 months changed my mind about it My mother and aunties would make it worse by rubbing my belly and talking to her calling her by her name. My baby’s dads mother/family threw me a baby shower and that’s a reason why I feel stuck changing her name because of all the details she did by adding her name in the baby shower. My mother was the main one who basically gave me a hard time over her name. I had names i had in mind were Isabella,Madison,mia ,emma,aubrey,audrey,and olivia. But the responses i got where “girl shes hispanic not white, a dark baby with a white name,” those responses by people really hurt me and even pressured me to just stick with her name.The day I day I gave birth the lady kept asking for her name and I myself told I have a week to name her I am not ready. But she kept insisting. I just feel it in my heart I just don’t like it plus it does not flow nicely. So I thought to make it a middle name because the grandma’s love it and add Audrey to the first. Idk I felt for a while that I was crazy for wanting to change her name. But I’m her mother and she’s my child. But how do I break the news to family memebers??????

  39. Taylor May 11 at 9:58 am Reply Reply

    Wow! So glad I stumbled across this…I was seriously thinking I was going CRAZY!
    I found out I was pregnant again and I wished for another boy, but my little princess had different plans! And I couldn’t be happier, she is seriously the most beautiful thing I have ever seen!
    We don’t pick names until we see our little ones. And in the hospital my husband picked the most perfect name for her, we both loved it. THEN his family had so much to say because they did not like it, his sister even made the most foul, wrong, disgusting comment about our name. SO from the hormones and pressure we changed it. I cried every day for 8 weeks. I cringe when people say her name. I feel defeated, his family had no right to pressure us that way. 
    The WORST part now is my husband is attached to the NEW name. He doesn’t even like to talk about it! I’m so confused. She is 10 months old and I feel like I will regret this always….

  40. T Jun 08 at 9:19 am Reply Reply

    I’m feeling a little less alone in this after reading all your posts! Thank you!

    My darling little boy was born 9 months ago. Im English and my husband is French and we live in the UK. For some insane reason I decided to call our son a beautiful French name, which I regretted the minute I told my family and they looked shocked and disappointed that I had not only chosen a name that they couldn’t pronounce, but I had also completely ignored the whole English side of my baby’s heritage!

    The moment I realised my fatal mistake I begged my husband to change it to its English equivalent but he refused. He said we’d agreed on this name and our families had been told so now there’s no going back.

    Like people in the other posts above, people look confused when I tell them his name. And not a single person can pronounce it. What’s worse is when I tell them his name, they say “oh! A little French boy!”. And I think – no!! He’s half French and all mine!! Of course I don’t say that. Even French people wonder why we chose such an old and dusty French name.

    I would do anything to turn back the clock and give him the English name that everyone can pronounce but I actually think my husband would stop talking to me if I did. I also don’t know if I could take the social ridicule.

    I guess what most worries me is if he’s going to be ostracised at school. I’d hate his name to make his life miserable.

    Any advice would be comforting!

  41. W Jul 05 at 5:11 am Reply Reply

    I am also super relieved that I am not the only one with the baby name regret. I didn’t even no such thing exists but now it hit me so strongly.
    Ever since I new we’re having a girl I new felt that her name is Mira. My husband was ok with it, but it was not his favorite. Moreover his family was literally hating the name and that was the reason he started moving away from it. We were considering different options as we really wanted to make sure that both of us are happy with the name. Time was passing and it was 9th month without the selected name. People started interfering, probably thinking that if we cannot make up our minds they will help. I heard many negative opinions about my dearest name and also a few positive ones. Finally we had a shortlist: Mira, Leela and Malina. And weirdly I started moving towards Leela… It was party after a conversation with a friend and also giving up after negative feedback for Mira.
    The day I had a c-section we still didn’t know. My husband said the choice was mine and he will be happy with it. I looked at her, beautiful, tiny and delicate and I thought – Leela.
    My regret was growing slowly, first I noticed it sounds odd when people call her, then I found that this name in a similar form is now totally popular in my country and on top of that nobody is able to spell it! (In here it would be spelled Lila).
    ‘The baby’ is 3 months old now and I haven’t called her with her name even once. This issue has contributed to my baby blues turning it into depression. I am starting a therapy next week. My husband was very much against the name change saying that it will affect our relationship. His and my family are saying they will not call her Mira if I change the name. I feel terrible looking at the little girl that I dreamt of and feeling that I spoiled the perfection with MY wrong choice. My husband finally said that if I am supposed to be upset about it for the rest of my life I can go ahead and change the name but he still does not like it. What would you guys do? I need advice badly… Got completely lost :(

  42. D Jul 20 at 1:47 pm Reply Reply

    W- if my husband would agree, I would change my baby’s name in a heartbeat. My baby is now 9 months old and the feeling has not gone away, it has just gotten worse. Do it. Other people always have opinions about names, but she is your baby. Change her name and be happy. 

  43. D Jul 20 at 2:11 pm Reply Reply

    If anyone checks back here, I would love to hear any updates.

  44. Nicole Jul 20 at 9:50 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you to everyone who has posted here – it is comforting and reassuring. My advice is to change your baby’s name as soon as you start having doubts, if they are still young enough. We took 2 weeks to name our daughter, tossing up between 3 names. I eventually chose the name I had liked for most of my pregnancy, but ignored the fact I had developed doubts about it at around 35 weeks. I went with that name as I feared I would later regret not choosing it, given I had liked it for so long. Turns out I should have listened to my instincts. I recall crying about her name when she was 6 weeks old but felt too embarrassed to change it and was too worried I would make another bad decision for my perfect little girl. My husband was willing to change it and the whole episode would be well in the past now if we had. Instead, almost 4 years on, I still feel tortured by my decision. I think about the name I wish I’d given her throughout every day and wonder if this feeling will ever go away. I feel sad whenever I hear a mother call her girl the name I wish I’d chosen for mine, or even a name that sounds similar. So if you have the support of a loved one, just change your baby’s name before it’s too late. I so wish I had. Thanks for reading this.

  45. Nicole Jul 20 at 9:54 pm Reply Reply

    And to D, it’s not too late at 9 months. Would your husband consider going to a counsellor with you to talk it through? Might help to have someone mediate the conversation a bit. I really feel for you as I understand how awful it is.

  46. M Aug 02 at 11:00 pm Reply Reply

    I am so glad I found this site. Reading these stories really had helped me with our decision.

    Here is our story…The initial name we gave our son in the hospital was changed as soon as we heard the nurse pronounce it. It sounded awful. We decided to just change one letter and thought that would help. Luckily we had only told a few people at that point.

    Then everyone who heard the name with the new letter could not pronounce it correctly. I would wince every time I heard someone say it wrong (which happened each time someone would read it). We thought changing another letter would help…it didn’t. After many conversations with my husband about how much I regretted the entire name, he agreed that we could change it entirely (yes, we were on name #4). We made the big change when the little guy was nine weeks old.

    I was really nervous about telling people. I was really really nervous about telling my in laws. Then once we did they didn’t mind at all! They laughed a bit, we made fun of ourselves and that was that. People have been really accepting about it. This was not what we expected.

    I am glad we made the choice to do it. I knew if we didn’t do it I would regret it later. His new name fits him so much better and he won’t have to go through life correcting people all the time. If you are going through this, just start talking about it as soon as you start thinking about it. Then if you make the decision to do it it not as much as a surprise to people. I think the fact that we had changed the spelling so much made it easier for people to accept.

  47. Candace Aug 10 at 12:41 am Reply Reply

    Hi, I just had my very 1st daughter July 2015 and I’ve always wanted a lil girl after having 3 boys. My husband and I had a difficult time agreeing on a name, she came 2weeks early and we still hadn’t agreed on a name, I felt so pressured and overwhelmed to her and now I regret her name. I cry everyday over it because I feel like I let her down. I don’t want ppl to think I’m a crazy or postpartum I just really hate her name. I don’t know what to do I want to change it but I don’t know how? Please help

    • Kelcey Kintner
      Kelcey Aug 10 at 9:54 am Reply Reply

      Please don’t worry. Do you have a name you love? It really is a simple legal process. But it depends on the state. Each state has a legal process for changing a name (a baby’s name or any other name). It will just be a step by step thing. You will probably have to file papers at the courthouse. Why don’t you make a few calls today in your own state and try to find out the legal process for changing a name. Sometimes just taking one small step in the right direction will help your fears subside. 

      But don’t stress. Talk to your spouse and figure out a name you do love. Parents often feel pressured to come up with a name fast once a baby is born and it can be overwhelming. Not liking your baby’s name does not mean you are crazy. It means you chose the wrong name. Email me at kelcey@mamabirddiaries.com with any questions or concerns. xo

  48. Candace Aug 12 at 9:34 pm Reply Reply

    Hi Kelcey,

    Thanks for your kind words and giving me hope! So, do I have a name I love? That was always the problem on why we couldn’t agree on a name, because I would like a name and my husband wouldn’t so we never got anywhere. Once at the hospital everything felt so rushed I felt forced to come up with a name, but now that I have gotten to know my daughter more I don’t see her as what we named her, however I’m still trying to work it out with my husband as to what we should name her! Ugh, idk why this is so difficult for me to do, she’s such a beautiful baby I just want a name that suits her, she deserves it

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