Mom Considers Changing Her 4-Year-Old’s Name Because “It’s So Common”, And The Internet Is Confused

Giving your child their name is a huge responsibility. It will become a part of their identity and it will subtly shape how people will treat them. And like it or not, the sad fact is that some kids’ names can make them more of a target for bullies. In some rare cases, parents might even consider changing the name in order to protect them. However, this is not a story about one of those cases.

Instead, this is a tale about a mom who wanted to change her 4-year-old daughter’s name because it wasn’t as original as she’d wanted it to be. She realized that there’d be a group of girls in her daughter’s nursery class with the same name. Upset that it was ‘so common now,’ she turned to the Mumsnet crowd for advice on whether or not to change her child’s name.

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Scroll down to read the mom’s full post, as well as how the internet reacted to it. You can share your thoughts about everything in the comment section, dear Pandas. What advice would you give the mom? Do you think there’s ever a ‘right’ reason to rename a child? Why do you think some parents want their kids’ names to be truly unique? Let us know how you feel.

As kids grow and develop, they start identifying with their names more and more

Image credits: Nothing Ahead

However, some parents don’t fully understand this. This mom, for instance, wanted to change her 4-year-old’s name because it was ‘too common’

Image credits: Chesternut

Image credits: BBC Creative

According to the OP, she’d hated being one of five other people with the same name back in school. That’s why she decided her daughter would never go through the same experience ever again. However, many internet users felt like the entire renaming situation was more about how the mom felt than how her daughter did.

Many folks pointed out that the only opinion that really matters is the woman’s daughter’s: does she actually want her name to change? Others noted that you can’t suddenly change someone’s name when they’re already 4 years old. Before considering such a huge decision, you have to think about how this change will affect your child, and whether they will feel more or less secure.

What’s more, you have to consider the fact that your kid will then have to explain why their name changed to all of their friends and family members. It’s a huge can of worms that most parents probably might not want to open.

Dr. Michael Lewis, from the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Institute for the Study of Child Development, told Fatherly that most children can say personal pronouns (e.g. me, mine) by age two. What’s more, they can recognize themselves in the mirror. In short, that means that they begin to self-identify. And they begin to associate themselves with their name.

However, it doesn’t mean that they’ve permanently identified themselves with any particular name. Though the longer you wait, the stronger the connection. “Learning one’s name is pretty easy. You don’t call out to your child ‘hey child.’ We use personal names, and very soon the child comes to recognize that name. A child can do that within the first year of life. If parents want to name somebody after someone, they (can) keep that name but they don’t refer to the child by that name. That doesn’t cause a problem,” Dr. Lewis said.

The OP gave a small update with some additional info

During a previous interview, parenting blogger Samantha Scroggin, from ‘Walking Outside in Slippers,’ shared her thoughts about picking out a name for one’s child. There are a lot of compromises that you have to be prepared to make, even if you think you have the perfect name picked out for your kids.

“I played dolls with my friends when I was little, and had names for the dolls that I fully intended to name my actual human children one day. I pretty much stuck to the plan into adulthood, but hadn’t realized that my husband would reject all of my choices. Goodbye, ‘Felicity.’ The reality of choosing a name is more complicated than some of us realize because you need to consider how your partner will feel about your choices,” the parenting blogger told Bored Panda.

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Some things to keep in mind might include thinking about incorporating a family name or picking someone you would like to pay tribute to. Meanwhile, some names might be off the table because of the negative associations either parent might have with them. After all, not many people would want to name their kid after their own childhood bully.

“There are bad associations we have due to people we have known through the years that can limit our name options. All of this comes before we even open up the discussion to more unusual names and possible teasing,” Samantha said.

“I personally believe no one should be teased for their name, but the reality is that a very unusual name choice could be setting up our kids for teasing despite our best intentions. An easy-to-say name will also be simpler for teachers, coaches, and friends to pronounce correctly. That said, I believe we should teach our kids to take the time to learn to correctly pronounce names, especially from different cultures and languages. Because we never want to seem like we’re making fun of someone’s culture or language,” she said.

Here’s how people reacted to the mom’s peculiar idea

The post Mom Considers Changing Her 4-Year-Old’s Name Because “It’s So Common”, And The Internet Is Confused first appeared on Bored Panda.


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