As crazy as it sounds, coming up with a baby name is one of the toughest parts about pregnancy. A parent essentially has nine months to come up with a name that will define this child's entire life. Some moms may want a family name while dads may want something more trendy. Whatever the names in the hat are, coming up with one is no easy feat.
So what happens if a parent chooses a name for their child but isn't fond of it? As some parents explained, they chose a name out of pressure. They have family members and friends pressuring them to choose a great grandmother's maiden name that they weren't even close to. Other parents simply couldn't come to a conclusion on a name that both partners could agree to.
Regardless of the reason, a parent has a year to change their child's name. Realistically, we can legally change our names whenever we want, but when it comes to babies who don't know their identity, they're trying to react to whatever name they're being called. Sticking with one name as early as possible is best suited for a child, which is what these 20 parents tried to do themselves.
20 "Ottalie" Is Not An Easy Name To Pronounce
After learning the name 'Ottalie' from a friend overseas, this mom knew she wanted to name her soon-to-be daughter it. But, as it turns out, the name wasn't so easy to pronounce for other people. Parents notes that her daughter's name started leaving a sour taste in her mouth when not even her grandmother could pronounce her name.
Ottalie was supposed to be pronounced like Natalie, but everyone they met didn't understand the name.
Worried about Ottalie's future, her mom decided to legally change her name to their second choice: Margot. A few years later, there's no regrets or confusion. Margot was the new Ottalie.
19 They Called Their Son A Different Name And Liked It Better
There seem to be many specialists who encourage parents to change their child's name within the first year (if that's where their mind's at). After this couple's baby was born, they were stuck on a name.
It was four months after their child was born and they still weren't convinced that the name they chose was the winning choice. After calling their child a second name, they realized they liked the way it sounded.
Six months later they legally changed it. As the mom tells Reddit, "It was literally one piece of paperwork and one call to the social security office. [...] Changing it in systems like the doctor/health insurance/etc [was a little more difficult], but no one made a big deal out of it. Our doctor said it wasn't common but she'd seen it before (changing first names)."
18 Dad Was So Stressed, He Filled The Paperwork Wrong
The day a woman goes into labor is memorable, to say the least. The baby is FINALLY on its way, it's showtime! Not only is the mom about to put herself to the test, but her partner might be on the brink of stressing out, too! They're on the sidelines doing their best to be supportive, but there's only so much they can do; they have no control.
Once momma has done her job, and the baby has arrived, it's the partner who usually fills out the paperwork while mama rests. But for this couple, it appears dad was so stressed out, he didn't quite write the right thing: "My husband filled out all the paperwork for our son while I was still in the hospital and he spelled it wrong in two different ways for different forms (government and health card). So we had to change it once I found out when it came in the mail."
17 The Nickname Was Better Than The Name
What happens when you create a nickname for your child that's more fitting than the actual first name? At 2 years old, this woman changed her child's name after falling in love with the nickname instead. "Within two-three days of being born, she was known by her nickname rather than her registered name. And by a few months old would not respond to her registered name, everyone called her by her nickname etc.. So we changed it"
Most parents don't share their child's names on forums because of the worry that people might pick apart the chosen name. But if your child reacts to their nickname instead of their first name, making a change sounds like a good idea.
16 The Name That Got Left Behind
I've been keeping a list of names in my phone since I could remember. It doesn't matter if the names are for kids or pets — when I become in love with a name, I write it down to remember it.
Likewise, this woman always loved one name in particular but forgot about it by the time she had her own son.
“My husband and I had been dating for years and years before we got married, and we always picked out the name Will for our future child. I had twin girls, and then six years later I was pregnant with a boy, [but] we didn’t even think about the name Will. We chose the name Dylan just because we liked it,” one mom told Romper.
But by 10 weeks old, the original name (Will) came back to her, and an official name change was granted. “I was looking at my son in his crib and I was like ‘he’s so not a Dylan.”
15 Atticus Finch
Atticus Finch is a fictional character from an award-winning novel by Harper Lee. While the book centers around some heavy topics, Atticus is one of the most well-known characters in literary history.
According to Babble, these parents wanted their newborn son to encompass everything Atticus exuded as a lawyer and as a human being. However, after Harper Lee's book Go Set A Watchman made its way onto shelves, Atticus was revealed to be a little darker.
Seeing this new side of Atticus, these parents no longer wanted their son to share his name. “When the new book came out, we just felt like, this does not at all encompass the values that we want for our son to have and know … and we felt like our son was young enough that we could change his name.”
14 Her Name Was Way Too Popular
CNN told the story of 6-year-old Sophie Sauber's parents, and how they didn't realize how many Sophies there were in the world.
When their daughter reached preschool, four out of the 13 students were named Sophie!
Not wanting their daughter to blend into the background, they asked their daughter how she would feel if she went by the name Isadora. "She understood our reasoning and liked the name. We weren't going to force her," says 'Isadora's' mother. "One day, after a trial period of a couple of months, she introduced herself as Isadora. 'It was like, 'That's her name now!'"
13 The Name Never Felt Right
One parent told News.AU how much stress she was under to choose the perfect name for their child. As she says,
“You’re making a decision about a child that you don’t even know yet. They don’t have a personality yet. I woke up the next day and was like ‘What have I done? OMG why did I choose Betty?’”
After taking the week to think about it, she decided that calling Betty her second name, Rosie, was the better decision. "Luckily, they were yet to officially register her birth, so changing the name was no big deal." The easy part for this mom is that she changed her daughter's name less than two weeks after birth, so Betty was never the right name from the start.
12 She Never Grew Into It
There seems to be a lot of parents on this list who go with a name and hope their baby grows into it. But as we can see, that doesn't always happen. One mom told TheBump,
"But I was like, 'oh I'll grow into it. I'm sure I'll just get used to it.' And six months later, I bristled every time someone called her by that name. It wasn't their fault, it was what we told them to call her."
After nine months, this mom decided to change her baby's name from Presley to something else."This baby is absolutely, definitely not a Presley," she said. "Oh man. We gave our kid the wrong name!" And while her baby was almost a year, the new name was better suited in the long run.
11 People Kept Pronouncing The Name Wrong, So Mom Just Changed It
It's always a good idea to talk the chosen name over with someone. If you're a solo mom, try talking the name over with a friend or sibling. If you're in a relationship, make sure that whoever is dealing with the paperwork knows what name they're putting down!
After 20 years, one woman realized that her name has been wrong from the start.
Being named Andrea, her birth certificate said 'Anrea.' The two sound similar, of course, but this ended in the mom needing to change her "legal name" of Anrea to her original chosen name of Andrea. It makes us wonder if her mom actually wanted Anrea but was too nervous to correct people who called her Andrea!
10 The Judge Made Them Change Their Baby's Name
This has to be the most interesting story on this list. After a couple from Italy named their daughter Blu, the court system had an issue with the name and forced the couple to rename their child 18 months after birth! As the father told The Local,
"If we don't show up on Thursday with an alternative, a judge will decide our daughter's name for us."
The reason for the name change is quite fascinating; "The court's objection isn't just a matter of taste: it is based on a [...] decree, issued in 2000, that states that 'the name given to a child must correspond to their [gender].'"
Now that we're a year where gender is a big topic, it's surprising that Italy still feels this way.
9 Eamon Just Wasn't A Very Good Name
When this woman's best friend had her son, she was conflicted on names (as are many other parents). "My best friend changed her son's name when he was 3 months old. She wanted to name him Finnley, husband wanted Eamon. They named him Eamon and at three months — they changed his name to Liam."
The Redditor explains that now 17 years later, she's happy with the name change, "To this day she says she can't imagine him being an Eamon." It's funny how a name can define a person so well. Some people just look their name and would be strange being called anything else.
8 Dad Left, So Mom Changed Baby's Last Name
Unlike many other posts in this article, this mom didn't change her child's first name. She changed her child's last name. As she told Reddit, she gave birth to her daughter at 18 yeard old and gave the baby the dad's last name.
However, now that they're no longer together, the daddy has checked out.
Not being in the picture anymore, this woman was seeking advice for how to go about changing last names. Having her daughter take her maiden name seems like a better fit than the last name that has no real connection to them anymore. While the process may be relatively simple, there were a ton of forms that needed to be redone.
7 Husband Changed His Mind Eight Months Later
"My baby is four months. We had a name picked throughout my pregnancy and referred to him as that. At 8 months my husband tells me he doesn't like that name and we pick a new one. I still feel weird calling him the name we picked, and in my head wish we had named him the original name. I still like the name, it just feels off putting him and the name together."
After a long conversation (and some persistence from the Reddit community), a change of name was being done before the child turned one year old. After all, a marriage is a compromise, and a baby name is a BIG one.
6 They Swapped The First Name For The Middle
Do you have any friends who prefer to go by their middle name or a nickname instead of their first name? I actually know a few people who go by a shortened version of their name — it's quite normal.
"My husband had his name legally changed when he was 2. His first name was his middle name when he was born and now he has a new middle name. It's never been an issue for him though legally. They reprinted his birth certificate and all his other documents after the change."
If a parent is planning on calling their child by their middle name, they might as well swap the two, no?
5 People Will Get Used To The New Name
"Someone in my mom group regretted her baby's name from day one and just recently legally changed it at 8 months old," one mom told Reddit.
"No one really seemed to think it was weird. She made a cheerful [social media] announcement and everyone was very encouraging."
One of the things many parents are afraid of is how others will react to the name change. Depending on how much time has changed, they may be too comfortable calling the baby the original name from the new name. At the same time though, friends and family will get used to it — everyone knows how stressful name-picking can be!
4 Different Spellings Mean Different Pronounciations
In this instance, what if a parent likes her child's name but dislikes the way they spelled it?
"My sister-in-law just legally changed her son's name (he's 2 years old). His name was Kamron, changed it to Kameron because people were pronouncing it "Cam-Ron" rather than the typical pronunciation of Cameron."
This just goes to show that it's never too late to change your baby's name, and if changing the spelling makes both your kid's life and yours easier — so be it. Let's just hope they didn't have any clothing or blankets with the original name embroidered on it.
3 Plain Jane To Something Snazzy
One parent told The Guardian that naming her son Ralph was the wrong decision. After waiting a few months for Ralph to grow into his name, it never happened.
"I thought he might grow into it but found myself flinching every time I heard someone say it. I never called him anything but 'the baby.' By the time he was six months old, I realized having a child whose name I couldn't say was a problem," this mom says.
After putting away her pride, she brought the conversation up to her husband who actually didn't mind if they changed Ralph's name. And this is how Ralph became Huxley.
2 The OC
Anyone who grew up in the 2000s is well aware of the former show The O.C. It had an amazing storyline and fresh faces to get excited over. Plus, there were some pretty cool Californian influenced names to get inspired by. That's what happened to this mom.
After calling her child "the baby" for months, she tried out different names on her baby to see what worked.
Jokingly stating, she told ScaryMommy, "I totally [took] the name Summer from the now-canceled Fox TV show, The O.C... Sure, some people name their kids after famous sports stars or silver screen legends, but I personally think characters from cheesy teen dramas are more the way to go."
1 A Change Of Heart
"I had chosen a name for my baby and in the insanity of childbirth, gave her a different name. It bothered me for months and I finally hit [an irreversible] point," one mom told BabyCenter.
"I changed her name back to what I originally chose for her and am so relieved that I did. It was a long process, but well worth it"
Depending on the state or country you live in depends how easy or hard the process of legally changing a name is. As it appears from these 20 mommas, the younger the kid, the easier it'll be. "My only regret was giving her a name that wasn't hers, to begin with. And at first everyone thought I was crazy for changing her name, but eventually, they all got used to it."