We started a list of baby names early on in the pregnancy (in fact, my wife and I routinely talked about children names even before we were pregnant); it seemed like a fun exercise to work on intermittently and good topic of conversion on most days. By the end of the first trimester we had a list of about 12 boy’s names and 12 girl’s names. Now at the start of the third trimester we have first and middle names picked out.
For the most part we both agreed on names we liked and the list came together pretty easily and quickly. As the weeks went by we started eliminating names from the original list after much discussion and thought. At the 20 week ultrasound we learned the sex of the baby and were able to cross off 50% of the remaining names. From there we narrowed it down to 3 or 4 for the final list.
Here is some of the criteria I used when selecting names for the list:
- First name of two syllables or less.
- Easily spelled and pronounced. I don’t want my child going through life constantly explaining how to spell or pronounce his/her name.
- First, middle and last name had to flow well.
- Make sure that initials didn’t spell anything that would be embarrassing.
- Number of syllables in the middle name had to be less than or equal to the number of syllables in the first name. This (to me) helps with flow.
- Nothing that may embarrass my child throughout his/her life.
Yes, I know some of these are very strange, but it helped me to narrow down my choices. We also used some of the baby name sites that are out there to learn name meanings and popularity, although this was more interesting than anything else. The information we learned on these sites did not actually influence our decision. Toward the end of the process, we added a name to the bottom of the list that we were not even considering when we started the process. This “add on” name ended up being the name we selected.
Originally we were not going to tell other people the name we had chosen until after the baby was born because we didn’t want any comments or criticisms. However we changed our minds and decided to disclose the name as people asked and the response has been very positive.
For me choosing a name has been a positive and fun experience and we have already started referring to our baby by name. So for all you expectant dad’s out there that are having a hard time with the reality of your situation, start working with your wife on a list of names. This will help it seem more “real” and it is also pretty cool to start calling your baby by name.
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