(Written by Jessica Brown) One of the single most important decisions you’ll make for your child before they’re even born is their name. Whatever name we’re given at birth is the one we’re stuck with – at least until we’re old enough to legally change it (although most keep it anyway). While a name shouldn’t define your child, it can have a significant influence in their life, especially as a child.
Before you choose a name for your new baby, there are several things you should think about. With some careful, thorough consideration, you’ll ensure that you choose the perfect name for your child – a name that everyone can live with forever.
When you think of a name you love for your child, you also have to think about any nicknames that might be associated with it. People love to use nicknames, especially for babies, and they’ll often do so, using anything from popular nicknames to made-up ones. If you hate any of the popular nicknames that go with the name you like, then choose another. The nickname will inevitably be used. Unless you want to constantly correct people, don’t use it.
Before choosing a name, always check the charts for the most popular boys’ and girls’ names in the country over recent years. There are always different types of names that are trendy and popular. While you may like some of those names, you should consider if the popularity of it bothers you. For example, your child might end up being one of two, three, or more children with the same name at school. You might want to choose something more original or less popular.
Parents choose names because they just like them, or because they have significant meaning to them. What’s the meaning behind your child’s name? You can look up the meaning in baby name books and see if it’s something you like. Or, consider coming up with a name that means something to you, such as a family name. You should also think about any connotations that could come with the name. Some names, for example, might be commonly associated with celebrities, news events, or other pop culture.
Not only do you need to choose a name for your child, but you need to choose how to spell it. Some names have many possible spelling variations, and parents also often get creative and make up their own. When you think about spelling, think carefully before you use something that’s too unique. If it’s an uncommon spelling, then you and your child will continually encounter people who misspell or mispronounce the name, and you’ll have to correct them repeatedly.
Finally, say your child’s full name out loud many times, including all combinations of nickname variations and with or without the middle name. Sometimes first and last names don’t sound good together, or when said quickly they might sound like something else. If your child has older siblings, think about how their first names will sound when said together.
* Photo Courtesy of Pinterest
Jessica Brown is employed as a middle school teacher. She enjoys sharing her ideas and tips for new parents on activities for children with others via blogging.