Tuesday, 2 August 2011

What's in a name?

Our son was unnamed for the first 6 days or so of his life. After everyone telling us that your first baby is usually late,  we hadn't yet settled on a name when he arrived two weeks early. We had a few names written down that we liked but had not chosen one and suddenly there he was and we still couldn't pick one! Every time a family member spoke to us on the phone, they'd ask if we'd come up with a name, which got frustrating - did they really think we would give him a name and not tell them?

Giving a child a name is a big responsibility and a task that doesn't come easily to my husband and I. We know people who have found out the sex of their baby and announced the baby's name half-way through their pregnancy but we're at the opposite extreme. I've taken baby name books out of the library for perusal, "1000 Baby Names" and such like but nothing stands out. It's not because we're into obscure names or are looking for a name that people have never heard of, although neither do we want a very common name.

We're trying to be more organised with the baby due later this year and are hoping to come up with a name in good time. So far, we don't have anything and are resorting to studying the credits at the end of each film we watch to see if anything grabs our attention! Some people use family names, others have already picked out names before they even got married. However you choose, there are things to consider about the name:

- Does it go well with your surname?

- Do the initials spell anything? (eg. Steven Andrew Drake = SAD).

- Does the name fit with any siblings' names?

- Are there different ways to spell it that might cause difficulties or frustration once they are at school?

- My favourite: Does it pass the playground test? We read this somewhere and it seems good advice. Would you feel comfortable shouting out the name across a crowded playground (for instance if your child is about to jump from the top of a high slide or they're in some other dangerous situation where you need to yell out to them). It works. There have been names I thought I liked but they didn't pass the playground test!

How did you come up with your child(ren)'s name(s)? Was it a tough task for you?


Image courtesy of Poppy Thomas-Hill



  1. Funny, the playground rule! We knew very early on for our daughter but for our son it was harder. Then one day, we were watching a kids' field hockey game and a mother shouted out her son's name across the field, and I really liked the sound of it. That's our son's name now. I guess I didn't need to hear it in the playground after that. :):)

  2. That's a great story Maryse!

  3. My husband and I are having the hardest time with naming our third child. We have until December, but don't have any that we like right now! Hopefully we will come across something because I'm worried about having a baby without a name,ha! We are like you and looking everywhere, including movie credits. Good luck!

  4. Glad to know we are not the only ones struggling :-). Good luck with coming up with a name for your child Tiffany, I'm sure something will come to mind in good time!


Thank you for reading. I'd love to have your comments and thoughts!