Why your parents may regret choosing your name

Many parents regret the name they give their baby, a survey has found. Photo / AP
Many parents regret the name they give their baby, a survey has found. Photo / AP

Nearly one-in-five parents wish they'd opted for a different name for their child, a new survey by Mumsnet has revealed.

An online poll by the parenting forum asked 1362 respondents if they ever regretted the first or middle names they'd chosen for any of their children.

It found that 18 per cent said yes - with a quarter of those saying that the name being "too commonly used" was the main reason for their regret.

The next most common reasons for regretting a child's name were "it just doesn't feel right" (21 per cent) and "I have never liked it - I was pressured into using it" (20 per cent.)

Other reasons given included: "It's not distinctive enough"; "It causes him/her problems with spelling/pronunciation"; "It doesn't suit him/her"; and "Everyone calls him/her by a shortened version of the name, which I don't like".

Three per cent of those who expressed regret said there had been a "shift in public perception of the name since my child was born".

For a third of those who changed their mind about their child's name, regrets emerged within the first six weeks. For 23 per cent, the catalyst was their child starting school or nursery.

Mumsnet founder Justine Roberts told the BBC: "Choosing your baby's name is one of the first things new parents do, so in some ways baby name regret is great practice for parenting - you do a lot of hard work and research, try to please several people at once, and end up getting it wrong.

"The consolation is that most children grow into their names, and those who don't can always fall back on middle names, nicknames or, in extremis, deed polls."

- Daily Telegraph UK

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