Friday, May 2, 2014

on baby names

I think it's comical that complete strangers, family or friends think their opinion of the names you chose for your potential child is important and should be heavily considered when making such an important decision.
Before I continue, this post is referring to the first of the three categories. Our friends and family have always been very good about respecting our choices and not telling us they were stupid (even though I'm guessing Elden's name took a while to grow on some of them) unless we asked for honest opinions about what we were considering. For that, I tip my hat to our loved ones. However, I know several people who have chosen not to share their baby's name with their family or friends before the baby is born because they know they will get negative comments and it upsets them. They don't want to have to hear day in and day out that the name THEY chose for the child THEY conceived and THEY will be up with in the middle of the night is stupid.
I've been on the baby forums with this pregnancy and as Jon and I mull over a boy name (still to be determined) the one we landed on is pretty unconventional and therefore doesn't have many spelling examples to refer to. We can think of five different spellings for the name and we each have a preference that happens to not be the same. For fun, I turned to the baby board to see which the other mamas-to-be thought was the least offensive option and even prefaced that people were welcome to get on their soap box and preach how much they hated our choice, but that it was likely what we would be going with and I really didn't care if they hated it. As expected, I got the sarcastic replies that it was a pretty stupid name (people are stuck on the meaning of it, which is neither good nor bad) and I couldn't help but laugh. It's fine if you don't like the names I choose for my child, internet stranger (or friend or family member). Do us both a favor and don't use the name my husband and I mulled over for weeks and weeks so that it doesn't become too popular for our liking and you don't have to have a child that you think will be bullied relentlessly. But you're right. I *should* consider what you're saying because you were there for the conception and totally get a say, right?
So to the people of the world: unless someone you care about asks you for an honest opinion about a baby name they are considering (and when you respond, please choose your response lovingly because they are trusting you to be respectful about something they were at least somewhat fond of), just smile, nod your head, and tell the person it's cute. Because odds are, they aren't going to change it just because you disapprove. They will just write a blog post discussing how annoying other people's entitlement can be.

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