Picking a Baby Name: The Joys and Woes

Of all the tasks that come with preparing for a new baby, choosing a name is somehow simultaneously the best and the worst part.

I love the fun of scrolling through the Social Security website of names from different decades or reading endless Top Name lists online.

I’ve accumulated piles of baby-name books from consignment sales, each one thicker than the next.

What I don’t love is the inevitable opinions you get when you make the mistake of revealing a name you like.

This is how the conversations tend to go:

You: “I love the name Elizabeth.”
Other Person: “I knew a girl named Elizabeth in middle school and she was a huge skank.”

You: “I think we’ve decided on the name Joseph.”
Other Person: “There was a serial killer on the news the other night named Joseph.”

You: “We are thinking about the name Kimberly.”
Other Person: “Are you a big Kardashian fan?”

It’s easy to say the opinions of others shouldn’t matter to you.

But once these comments are made, they tend to stick inside your head.

It’s hard to speak the name without remembering “serial killer” or “skank.”

Choosing a name is a huge responsibility for a parent.

If you are keeping your options open, the choices can be overwhelming and the reactions of your friends and family can be hard to deal with.

My husband suggested we keep our favorites just between us.

That way, no one can get in our heads and ruin a good name that we both like.

After all, it’s hard enough for two of us to agree on the perfect name.

Dealing with the opinions of anyone else is just exhausting.