I have to imagine that as parents, choosing our babies’ names is one of the most personal decisions we make. Our names follow us everywhere – school, jobs, relationships – and rarely does anyone actually change it. We chose Cullen’s name about halfway through my pregnancy, and I loved it from the day it was decided.
As it turns out though, according to a poll on the Today Show, one in ten moms admitted to having regrets after naming her child. While I personally love my son’s name, I’ve certainly heard my fair share of negative feedback from those who don’t. So do I regret our choice?
No way. After he was born, we got a few “ohhhh you must be huge Twilight fans!” types of comments here and there. At first they honestly confused me. Neither my husband nor I have seen the Twilight movies, although of course I have heard of them. Since the books/movies have no meaning in our life, it never really factored into our decision. We chose his name because we wanted something Irish or Gaelic, and we both loved that it was unique but not totally unknown.
I tend to find that the only people who question Cullen’s name seem to be people who don’t really know us very well. Our family and friends know that we aren’t the type of people to name our child after a teen book or movie character – it’s just not really our thing.
On TODAYMoms, another mom shares a similar story about her own baby name woes…
Mom blogger Charlotte Hilton Andersen wrote about her own baby-name regret on Redbook’s mom blog. Her son’s name? Jonas. Yes, like the brothers. No, they didn’t see that coming eight years ago when they named him.
Andersen wrote: “The first time it happened, we giggled. But this weekend when yet another little girl tittered and asked my 8-year-old son Jonas if he was named after the Jonas Brothers, the only sound was my son’s sigh. ‘Couldn’t you have named me Bob?’ … While I still love his name, I can understand why he gets tired of the jokes. At this age the girls are mostly reverential but if Nick, Joe and That Other One I Can Never Remember stick around the scene, by high school my son might have a legitimate complaint.”
As far as my own son goes, I’m pretty sure that by the time he is old enough to be joking with his friends, the Twilight fad will be long behind us. In fact, I think his biggest battle will actually be not being called “Colin.”
Names are so personal, and between funny spellings, common associations, and most popular lists, it’s hard to find anything that someone isn’t going to dislike. As parents, all we can do is choose what feels best for our family and our children. Parenting is tough enough as it is, and in my opinion we just have to trust our instincts and do what feels right. Who has time for regrets?