Want to share your baby’s name with everyone? Shh! Don’t do it.
When you become pregnant and start showing, everyone around you gets excited about the little one you’re bringing into the world. It’s not just family and friends, but co-workers, acquaintances and strangers, too. They ask questions, want to touch your bump and offer lots of unsolicited advice.
And inevitably, they’ll ask you what you’re naming your baby.
While this question seems innocent enough, more often than not you’ll regret sharing the answer with anyone. Here’s why:
People Are Critical
Long before I was ever pregnant, my husband and I mentioned a name we both liked to my mother-in-law. We had gone wine tasting in Central California. It was a first for my husband and we had a blast. We told my mother-in-law about the winery we visited called Kynsi (pronounced Kensi), and that it might be our future child’s name.
Almost immediately, I regretted sharing our thoughts.
My mother-in-law didn’t hold back on how much she disliked the name. I found myself first defending the name and then trying to end the conversation. And guess what? All the fond memories we had of going wine tasting and of that winery weren’t enough to overcome the criticism. We didn’t name either of our daughters Kynsi.
No matter what boy or girl names you’re thinking about, someone is going to have something negative to say about it. It’s too plain, it’s too weird, or it’s hard to pronounce or spell.
Share your baby’s name and someone will say they knew a person named that and he was the biggest jerk. Or they’ll tell you about how your child will get made fun of at school for having that name.
The point is, it’s impossible to build consensus about what to name your child. Everyone has a strong opinion about names, and their criticism could affect your decision. Even if you’re immune to what people say, do you really want to listen to them harp about it?
Name Theft Happens
Your child’s name does not make them who they are. But when you spend countless hours dreaming up names, researching meanings and having heated discussions about which name is best, the one you decide on is important.
That’s why it’s so painful when you share your baby’s name and someone close to you uses it before your little one is born. (It really happens!)
Now what? You have to decide if you’ll start the name search all over again or still use the same one even though someone else just gave their baby that name. Besides the name-search agony, this kind of situation can also cause a lot of anger and resentment between you and the person who stole your baby’s name.
Make Your Baby’s Name a Surprise
Just like there are really good reasons for waiting to find out your baby’s gender, I also think it’s best to not share your baby’s name or even what you’re thinking about with other people.
I know it’s hard when you’re consumed with all things baby and want to talk about it, but keeping quiet has definite benefits:
- Naming your baby becomes something special that only you and your partner can discuss and decide.
- You don’t get hassled about the name you chose or what you’re considering.
- Only the things that matter to you as a couple are taken into account when choosing the name.
- There’s zero opportunity for someone to steal your baby’s name before you’ve had a chance to use it.
If you announce your baby’s name after your child is born, it’s far less likely that you’ll face criticism. It’s too late for people to influence you with their stories and too rude for them to say they don’t like the name.
That’s why during both our pregnancies, my husband and I didn’t say a word to anyone about our baby’s names until they were born at the hospital. It irked some of our family members who needled us at every party to spill the beans, but we were happier keeping it to ourselves.
Choosing your baby’s name is too important to let other people’s opinions get in the way. It has to be something you and your partner love (that’s it!), because this is your baby and you’ll be saying your child’s name for the rest of your lives.
P.S. Want to make life with a newborn easier? What about labor and delivery? Girl, I got your back! Grab my free (and printable) Due Date Checklist to find out what you need to do during the third trimester to be fully prepared.
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