Tips for Pregnancy Week 20Brought to you by
Common Denominator: Choosing a name when conflict arises.
Jessica. Larry. Clementine. Blade. Veronika. Truth. Horatio. Jaxon.
If you went through the rosters of any elementary school, you would soon find that no name seems to be off limits. Names are not determined by ethnicity, gender, or parts of speech. Children are named after family, television characters, cars, numbers, and days of the week. Having an offbeat name has almost come to mean that you'll fit right in. Of course, despite the trends in naming, looking at the lists issued by the Social Security Administration shows that there are still classics, and popular names are used again and again. Where will your name fit in?
Of course, there is no right or wrong when choosing a name; and no hard, fast rules that dictate how or what a child can be named. This choice is intensely personal, which can lead to conflict when the people choosing the name disagree. If you and your partner find yourselves still at a standstill because you can't agree on names, try finding some ways to work together and compromise.
- Create a list of absolute no-go names that each of you can add to when necessary. These are names of ex-girlfriends or ex-boyfriends, names of family pets, and names that make your skin crawl just thinking of them. If either one of you wants to add a name to the list, that name is immediately out of the running.
- Create your own lists. Each of you should write down ten names that you like. Then trade lists and mark the ones you hate and love on the other person's list. Continue the process, adding and subtracting names from the list until you start to reach common ground.
- If one of you loves a name that the other one hates, discuss your reasons. You may find that the name you adore, Lola, makes your partner think of older women with facial hair that used to be a Vegas showgirl, while you envision a cute little French girl, with pigtails and an accent. Your child, of course, will probably be nothing like either description (unless you live in Vegas…or France) but it might help you to understand the other person's point of view.
If you are lucky enough to stumble upon a name you both love, be careful who you tell. Any friends who are also expecting, with closer due dates and no definite name choices should be considered suspect. In all seriousness, once you love a name you may start to hear it more often. Part of the reason for that is just because you are paying attention. Compare the phenomenon to the new car you purchase, that is suddenly one of many similar cars in the parking lot. Names also seem to have a generational time stamp of sorts, where the children of the eighties have this inescapable urge to name their sons Jake Ryan. If you love a name, really love a name, it doesn't matter how many other Jaggers, or Britneys, or Jakes there are out there. Yours will be your one and only.