Of all of the decisions you’ll make as parents-to-be, choosing a name for your baby can be among the most challenging. While some couples make it easy by using the same first name for generation after generation, others may prefer to choose from the thousands of unique, classic or downright trendy names. If you find yourself paralyzed by indecision over what moniker to give your bundle of joy, try to remember that naming your baby should be an enjoyable process -- not an agonizing one.
To start, make a physical list of all of the names you’re considering. Have your spouse do the same. If you don’t yet know the baby’s gender and you’re terribly indecisive, you may want to consider including unisex names on the list. See if any of your choices match, and then narrow your list to the top three. Even though you have nine months to analyze your options, you may still want to wait until your baby arrives to make your final decision.
Sleep on It
If your spouse is set on naming your daughter after Great Aunt Ethel, but you’d prefer a trendier name, such as Addison, tension can arise -- especially when dealing with those oh-so-fun pregnancy hormones. Instead of exchanging words you’ll regret later, remind yourself to remain open-minded and flexible. If you must, tell your spouse you’ll sleep on it, and then share your thoughts in the morning. The name you dislike at 11:30 p.m. may actually sound appealing after a decent night’s rest.
Stuck in the Middle With You
If you’re deadlocked on two or three of your favorite names, you might use one as the middle name. Likewise, if your spouse insists on including a family’s long-standing name like John but you’d prefer something different -- perhaps Declan -- suggest using the legacy name as a middle name. As the child matures, he can decide whether he wants to be known as John or Declan.
While you may be tempted to ask your friends and family for advice, don’t. Too many suggestions can fuel your level of indecisiveness -- especially if your parents or in-laws tell you they hate your choice or if they have clearly identified the person after whom they expect their grandchild to be named. Even if you’re not 100 percent sure of your decision until you must provide your baby's name to obtain a birth certificate, keep the chosen name to yourselves until you’ve made the name official.
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