It's 4Real: Parents say they'll call their son Superman

By Eveline Harvey

Pat and Sheena Wheaton have been told they cannot name their baby boy 4Real, but they have a Plan B.

"It's a little bit cheeky," admits Pat, but he says - if need be - he and his wife will register their son under an alias.

"If we have to register him for the Government or the system or whatever, then we'll register him as Superman . . . to friends and family he'll stay 4Real.

"It doesn't make a lot of sense: I can call him Superman but I can't call him 4Real," Pat told the Herald.

The couple's original choice met with controversy after it was made public and late last week the Registrar-General of Births, Deaths and Marriages rejected the name 4Real on the grounds that the dictionary definition of a name was "a sequence of characters".

The Wheatons say they are deciding whether to appeal the decision.

"They've turned us down but we're considering how far we want to go," Pat said.

However he admitted the couple would have to give the matter considerable thought before proceeding.

"I'm really unsure how successful we'd be if we took it to court; I'm obviously not a lawyer and [the Government] have got unlimited resources and taxpayer money."

Tony Wallace, a spokesman for the Department of Internal Affairs, said discussions with the family were ongoing in a bid to decide on a final name to be registered.

He was reluctant to comment further until a final decision had been reached.

The Wheatons initially decided on the name after seeing an ultrasound scan and realising their baby was "for real".

They believed the spelling 4Real was the clearest way of writing it down.

Pat said some of the criticism of him and his wife regarding their choice had been difficult to handle.

"I did go online and Google some of the stories and as tough as I am, it does get to you, but there's no point getting upset.

"It could be a 10-year-old school girl making those comments."

He said people's negative reactions were "predictable" because the name he and his wife had chosen wasn't the norm.

"No matter what, it's gonna stay 4Real," Pat said. "I'm certainly not a quitter."

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