Social Media Has Ruined Naming Your Child

As millennial parents, we have encountered numerous problems that our predecessors never had to deal with.

They never got a text message that school was closed. They had to wake up and watch the local news ticker until their town scrolled or didn’t scroll across the bottom to learn of their snow day fate.

They didn’t have to worry about Pinterest making our birthday party decorations feel inadequate.

They could send their child to school with a lunchable without feeling judged.

And the most unfortunate for us is that they didn’t have to choose a name for their child constantly being reminded on Facebook of an old flame, an old flame’s child’s name, the reminder of a disliked former classmate and every other person they have ever come into contact with that has sent a friend request their way.

Someone I’m acquaintances with on Facebook just had a baby and named their child my favorite girl name. For some reason, I was disappointed like I couldn’t still use it! Before the social media age, I never would have known this person’s daughter’s name but now, I felt hesitation out of embarrassment that the mom would thinking I copied her name. I should note, I’m pretty sure I’ve never met this person. Do I need to send out a disclaimer, *said* name has been my favorite since I was 18 years old?

Similarly, with Tommy, we ruled out many names because of “friends” who had children with names we liked despite our paths not crossing since he was born…

Wife: “What about name A?”

Husband: “No, I know a guy in my office with the name and he’s the worst.”

Sister: “What about name B?”

Husband + Wife: “We are friends with a guy with that name and he is crazy. No.”

Husband: “What about name C?”

Wife: “I went to college with a guy with that name and it would remind me of him, so no.”

Husband: “What about name D?”

Wife: “Like 5 girls in my sorority had babies last year and all of them named their son that same name. No.”

Wife: “What about name E?”

Husband: “Isn’t that one of your ex-boyfriends name? No.”

My brother’s name is Mike and so is my eldest cousin. My dad named his son the same name as his sister and we never thought this was weird but I can’t imagine naming my next child the same name as one of my nieces or nephews. It was a more simple time back then. Mike was also really popular in the late 70’s.

Teachers have always had it bad. Being a teacher, you constantly are reminded of current and former students when choosing a name. As I bounced names off my sister-in-law who is a former teacher, she had such funny reactions to our favorite names. “Awww, I had such a sweet student with the name.” or “I’ve had some really difficult students with that name.”

I’m lucky Nick doesn’t use social media so he has no idea what names his acquaintances, former ex-girlfriends, etc. have chosen for their children, unlike me, although he probably wouldn’t care.

In the end, I’ve come to realize that you have to choose a name you love! It doesn’t matter if your best friend used it last week for her first born, maybe don’t steal your sister’s dream name but besides that, choose a name you won’t regret because you never know who will move away or lose touch.

We now know we are having a boy. We carried over our girl name so we never discussed others and Tommy actually has 3 names so we lost a lot of options there! He goes by his middle which most of you don’t know but we’ve always kept it private for privacy reasons online (so don’t ask lol). 

We like classic, strong names for boys so our options are limited already. We had three front runners. I loved two, and Nick loved two and the one we chose is the only one we agree on! We couldn’t avoid choosing a name that one of our friends has already used but at least we know Tommy can pronounce it.

Some of you shared stories on my Instagram of name regrets and family members wanting you to choose a different name. I can’t imagine the either! It’s your baby, your decision.

Many of you said you waited until baby was born to choose a name and some even said you waited days! I can see why someone would want to change the name after the baby is born (I suppose hair color may influence this?) or go into the hospital with 2 and choose after delivery but I’m pretty sure we will not.

I am going to probably wait until he is born to fill out the birth certificate. I filled out Tommy’s weeks in advance. We were very sure of his name and he is such a Tommy that I can’t imagine him with any other name. He’s not even a Thomas, he is Tommy.

We’ve begun to tell friends and family but you’ll have to wait until July to find out. Sorry.

I wrote most of this post before we chose the name and it’s funny how much anguish I had in the beginning over choosing a name. After Tommy was born, I knew we didn’t agree on any other boy names so I was super nervous about finding one for this little guy. Now that we have it though, it just fits and I can’t really think of any other name for him!

Do you choose a name early on and share it with friends or family or do you keep it private or wait until the last minute to select?

Here is a new video on my fit family channel as well! Check it out.

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