What’s in a name?

by Hannah

My son is 10 months now and most people know his name. For the purpose of this blog, he is affectionately known as Baby Beastie so you most likely won’t know his given name. When I started blogging I wanted to preserve some privacy for my boys and is the reason why I chose not to divulge their names. I realise their pictures are on the internet for all to see and if someone I knew were to stumble across them, they would know who they were straight away. They do indeed have their own digital footprints but I feel it’s better not to have their names to accompany their photo’s – at the moment at least.

Anyway, back to the point. Like anyone, the names my husband and I have chosen for our boys are what we liked and what we as parents decided would be fitting names for them. So when you have a child and you hear the endless question of ‘what did you call them?’ It can get rather tedious. The name we have given Baby Beastie is not common but it’s certainly not one of those ‘out there’ names. It’s even a biblical name, so not a made up one – not that it should matter anyway.

Now I am back at work, the questions have started all over again and the expected responses have reared their head again. Nothing changes the fact that my husband and I love the name and nothing will ever change that…but if I get another response along the lines of ‘oh’ or a blank expression, I might not be responsible for my actions.

Last week a particularly tactless colleague firstly asked the rather dense question as to whether it was a baby I had had. Well yes seeing as I am a human it was more than likely that I would have given birth to a baby rather than a puppy. He then proceeded to query the name and then ask why he was called that, clarifying the pronunciation a couple of times. Then he declared that he liked the name of my firstborn as that was a good name. How flipping rude! Had there not been a room full of people I might have reacted rather differently. Similarly my husband has had the same reactions at his work and we both have got into the habit of not using his name when referring to him. Which in itself is awful but we do it simply to avoid people winding us up and maybe unwittingly on their part, reacting in the wrong way.

On the flip side, occasionally people have said how much they love his name. I know when people are generally being genuine and I thank these types of people. I am sure if they didn’t like his name they would have been graciously tactful as well.

So I ask, anyone that asks the name of someone’s child. Be tactful. If you can’t be tactful, please don’t ask! Of course I have my own opinions on names that some children are given and I think some of the names given to offspring I know are downright ridiculous. Would I infer that I have this viewpoint? Of course not. When you become a parent you automatically become your childs most loyal advocate and fierce defender, so when I see a glimmer of disapproval I start to feel my heckles rise.

For this reason I believe people have the right to choose their names for their children without prejudice. We all hear of some of the proposterous names that some celebrities seem intent on naming their children but when all is said and done, it’s their children and their specially chosen names. Who are we to criticise and foist our opinions when they quite frankly are not welcomed?

As the years go by I know I will develop a thicker skin and no doubt a sharper tongue. In all walks of life and in lots of different situations, people will always feel the need to express their opinions and being human they often can’t help the way they react but still, I wish they’d bugger off.


lucy at dear beautiful 20th January 2013 - 6:15 pm

Some people really can be idiots. I think people are often far too quick to blurt out their opinions on things full stop. We chose a really unusual name for the beautiful girl and dreaded what people may say. We went with it because we love it and fortunately everyone else seems to as well.
I am lucky enough to be in the club of knowing your boys names and I think they are both lovely. They go nicely together and are uncommon without being wacky. Just ignore everyone else and use their lovely names and be proud. X

Mummybeastie 20th January 2013 - 6:20 pm

Can’t they just. Thank you for saying that and yes I agree that I need to just ignore those around me! I do however need to know your lovely girls name! x

Katie 20th January 2013 - 8:15 pm

This is one of my pet hates as well. You obviously know Mads full name and I stupidly made the mistake of telling a colleague at work what I was thinking of calling her when I was pregnant. He turned around and said the rudest thing about why would I want to call my child after a missing girl. I was furious and now for this pregnancy I will not tell anyone our short list bar family and two close friends. It’s no ones business what you call your boys- and as someone who knows both their names, they are gorgeous. In face baby beasties name is one of Mr Es favourites. Xx

Mummybeastie 20th January 2013 - 8:35 pm

I remember you telling me about that guy, how insensitive of him and completely out of order. We only told family about Baby Beasties name and it worked out well. My colleagues kept pestering me and trying to guess and not one of them did. It was our secret. That’s nice Mr E likes it 🙂 xx

HELEN 22nd January 2013 - 11:01 am

whoooaaaa, rant over? 😉
I think it’s nobody’s business except your own what you call your children & unless they’re completely weird & wacky names that the poor kid is going to suffer ridicule because of then it doesn’t matter. I think your boys names are lovely & I wouldn’t think of them with any other name now…

My friend told me of someone that she knew with a daughter called Chantelle-Leah…..not bad on their own but double barrelled & said quickly, well…..

Mummybeastie 25th January 2013 - 11:46 am

Everyone needs a rant occasionally!! Yes I agree it’s the ones that are going to suffer at the hands of other kids, as we all know how cruel they can be. Yes that name is not good! x

Kara 24th January 2013 - 9:04 am

You rant away, I have constantly had comments on the names we have chosen, my mother even said she would refuse to call Grayson the original name we mentioned, a name is your personal choice, I personally love Baby Beasties name, it fits him well and is a lovely strong name that will grow with him.
I have already had hateful comments about some of the names we are thinking of for baby 3.
We all have names we do and don’t like some for reasons of people with that name, but other than to your partner in private you need never mention that

Mummybeastie 25th January 2013 - 11:49 am

Oh no that must have been upsetting about his original name. Thank you for your compliments on his name, it does suit him. I think your kids names are very fitting for them too 🙂 A colleague told me the other day about her grandson being called Diesel and her dissaproval but how they just had to grin and bear it. It’s a shame really and yes totally agree thoughts should be kept between ourselves x

Karen 28th January 2013 - 10:27 am

My mum hated my boys names and it really upset me ( max, felix or Jasper). She told me she was glad when we discovered we were having a girl. People can be so rude but for the record your boys have gorgeous names xx

Mummybeastie 29th January 2013 - 12:30 pm

Oh no that must have been awful. I suppose she felt she had to tell you about her feelings but still not nice to hear 🙁 Thank you hun and likewise with your lovely names xx


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