Telling Names

So, we’re having a boy in July.

And naturally, the very next question people ask is “So do you have a name picked out?”

No, no we don’t.

My husband is weird about names…he won’t even remotely discuss them until we find out the gender of the baby.  No matter how hard I try, he won’t even give me a grunt in either direction when I try to suggest a name before that big ultrasound.

Apparently he didn’t get the memo that little girls daydream about what they will name their future babies for years and years…and now that we’re actually pregnant, it’s finally time and all we want to do is scribble names in the margins of notebooks, on scraps of paper, and practice matching it up with sibling names for a guaranteed good fit.  We look up the trending data, meanings, and different spellings.  It’s like a full time job people!

Years of anticipation…fizzled by his insistence that he won’t even consider thinking about it.  After all, “why bother talking about girl names and then find out its a boy?!”

BECAUSE IT’S FUN.  It’s what girls do.  Just go with it.



So…we don’t have a name picked out because we’ve only known for a few days a this point.

But even if we did…I wouldn’t tell you.

We keep the name of the baby a secret until it’s born.

Which drives our moms BATTY. Completely up a wall crazy.  Which kinda makes it more fun.  (Kidding.  Mostly.)

Look, you already know I’m having a baby…you already know I’m having a boy…and in a few months, you’ll even know the exact date he’ll be born (I’ll have a c-section)…can we keep something a surprise????

Besides, this way I don’t have to listen to your “opinions” on the name…or veiled suggestions for alternatives…or start getting lots of obnoxiously personalized baby gear.

That being said, we asked Henry if he had any suggestions on what to name the baby.

I will share these with you because I’m confident that not one of them will make the final cut.

“What should we name Baby Brother?”

“Gabriel…or Walter.”  (His two best friends at preschool).

“Actually, I think Walter is best.”

Hmmm…okay, I mean, I know we go pretty traditional, old fashioned names (Henry, Lucy, Jill)…but Walter…it’s a bit much.

Anything else?


Nigel…the mean bird from the movie Rio. Also the name he has given multiple toys and action figures around the house.

Any others?


As in, Gilbert the cat in that horrific Caillou cartoon (that incidentally, we have not allowed them to watch even one time since I wrote that post…the more I thought about it, and read your comments, the more I realized I really didn’t want my kids watching it.)

So, we won’t tell you the names we pick out (whenever we finally decide), but I can tell you that you can rule out: Gabriel, Walter, Nigel and Gilbert.

(No offense to anyone who loves those names…they just aren’t our thing).

I do, however, regularly refer to the baby as Walter, because it’s kind of funny.

“Walter likes churros.”

“Walter needs some water.”

“Walter asked for another sleeve of Girl Scout Cookies.”

You know, the usual.

Do you announce the name of your babies before they are born?  Are you glad you did or do you wish you wouldn’t have?



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
I'm a mom to four. A wife to one. I believe in story. I love telling you about mine and would love to hear yours. There's really no sense in wasting our suffering and not sharing in each other's joy. We're all in this together...even if it doesn't always feel like it.

Latest posts by jeannett (see all)


  1. 1

    We tell everyone about what we’ve decided for names. I’m just not one to be able to keep a secret for that long. We have both decided on names very early on (even before we know the gender) so holding out for 8+ months is pretty difficult. We love once we decide on a name because we feel a little more connected to the new baby, and we want others to feel like they can see a bit of identity, too. Congrats on finding out that it’s a boy! Boys are so fun! =)
    Sharon´s last blog post ..Valentines Day

  2. 2

    We told everyone what we were naming both our boys, but I gotta say I wish we wouldn’t have now. With our oldest, Nicholas Evan, no one really said anything. Our second, Benjamin Stryder, everyone either loved it or thought Stryder was too weird. And then you have my dad saying the initials were just wrong. Everyone would call him BS. Nice Dad.

    I love traditional names too. I am so drawn to Jack. I tried getting my husband to name our second Jack, but he refused. And I’m with your husband, I don’t like picking out names until we know what we are having either. It’s just too much work. lol

  3. 3

    We didn’t spill the beans for child number two because a)with our kids only 18 months apart, we wanted to keep the gender and name a surprise {although the surprise was definitely on US!!} and b) we could. not. agree.
    Guys are so weird. Every time you mention a name, they’ve concocted some way that kid will get fun of or beaten up on the playground. Cody {oh, let’s get him some spurs!} Graham {Hey, Graham Cracker!!} Peyton {shall we buy him a tutu for his birthday??} Seriously, every name I mentioned got the kid ostracized from preschool before he even arrived. Sigh.
    We decided to wait until we met him. We liked the name McLean, and planned to call him that, but rhythmically, it worked better as the middle. So we waited. Would he look like a Connor? A James? A William??
    No. He looked like a girl.
    Complete with the little girl parts.
    Megan McLean it was… Yay for the 12th most popular first name on the planet. She’s been called McLean {rhymes with Mc-Plane} since she was about 8 months old. Drove the g’mothers NUTS to change it in mid-stream.
    Kimber´s last blog post ..40 Days

  4. 5

    “Which drives our moms BATTY. Completely up a wall crazy. Which kinda makes it more fun. (Kidding. Mostly.)”
    I always knew you were mean to the core. On number four, I’m much less BATTY, thank you. (Kidding. Mostly.)

  5. 6

    We didn’t tell either, and it didn’t just make my mom batty, I really think she was mad (and maybe hurt). Oh well. She got over it. It was the only surprise we had left that was just ours.

  6. 7

    We don’t find out the gender, or tell names. Talk about driving people batty!! This baby has been nicknamed Bob, and we have to continuously clarify that we aren’t really naming the baby Bob, or Bobbi, or any variation.

    We’ve had our girl name picked out for a while, but I am really struggling with the boy name (same with our first baby). My mom is convinced that the baby is a girl and has been trying HARD to get me to share the name. I just don’t want to hear people’s opinions of the name. They’ll be ok with it when baby is here, but it’s hard enough to decide without people trying to sway us now.
    Melissa´s last blog post ..Still here, still waiting on baby

  7. 8

    I too, have a hubby who is STILL avoiding talking about names and I’m almost 30 weeks pregnant AND we’ve known it is a girl for a looong time now. You are right – boys just don’t get the name thing. And last time, with our first girl, we shared what we THOUGHT was the name and I got all these personalized burp cloths, etc. and then we changed the name 2 weeks before she was born. {What DO you do with blankets and burp cloths with another name on them?} So I’m thinking we’re going to withhold any naming info until she arrives :)
    Kat´s last blog post is good to let go

  8. 9

    During our first pregnancy, we shared our baby’s name with everyone; but when we were pregnant with baby #2 (just 9 months later) we decided to keep her name to ourselves. It was fun. We did share the baby’s gender, but we didn’t reveal her name until after she was born; it felt more special that way. If we are ever blessed with another, I think we will keep the baby’s name and gender to ourselves during the pregnancy… and yes, partially because it will drive people a little batty! ;) haha

    Ooh, and please don’t even get me started on Caillou! We banned that show from our house too! I don’t for the life of me understand it’s appeal! He is SO whiny and is such a bad role model! The episode that set me over the edge was when he was visiting his friend Clementine and they dress up as grownups in order to trick her brother into playing with his drums… then his mom comes to pick him up and they just drop all the toys they were playing with on the floor and leave! No thanking his host, no cleaning up his mess, and don’t even get me started on the fact that the toddlers opened the front door. Eek.

  9. 10

    We don’t find out the gender but we do share names. We pick names that are less traditional so we want our families to get used to them before the baby comes. With our son, we still hadn’t decided on a boy name until after he was born, and didn’t have a middle name until the hospital told us it was time to decide.
    Cindy´s last blog post ..Clothes Drama

  10. 11

    For this baby in June (probably July, knowing that I always go over) we aren’t finding out gender, and we never share names. The looks we get after we tell names after they are born are reason enough – at that point it’s done. If we tell before people try to change our minds. But, on another note, I don’t like to think about names until close to birth. And I’m a girl!
    Jenny´s last blog post ..It’s a

  11. 12

    Ok, I’m dying because I feel like I’m reading what I would’ve wrote when I was preggo! We never told the names mainly because we didn’t want to hear everyones opinion, people have no filter when it comes to that. We always felt they wouldn’t say anything once the baby was actually here! Haha

  12. 13

    We told our son’s name before he was born. His name is Karson Allen Craig. My favorite comments….”spelling it with a ‘K’ is too girly”…”Your not really spelling it with a ‘K’ are you?”…”But your not Catholic” (in regards to him having 2 middle names…still don’t understand that one). We aren’t sharing Sister’s name until she arrives (in 6ish weeks!!!). This time we have gotten “”Why are you keeping it a secret…that is dumb!”…”Your not giving her 2 middle names are you?” (which she will)…”She better have {this} middle name.” (which she won’t:)) Oiy…and all of these comments came from the same group of people. :)
    Kelly´s last blog post ..Sister’s Room

  13. 14

    I just lied and told people that we hadn’t decided on a name. Which actually wasn’t that much of a stretch because we only ever agreed on one name!! I started calling him Sebastian just to shut my family up. Not sure which route we will go for baby number two.

  14. 15

    We never found out the gender, but always shared the names. Like you, I daydreamed about names (since high school!). We were steadfast about the names we wanted, so no comments were going to deter our decision. Now, when parents refer to the baby by name, when it’s not even born yet…that really creeps me out for some reason.

  15. 16

    Ha! I love that I can read all your posts and hear you saying it in my mind. And I love Mary Kay’s response (Andy’s mom or yours? either way- funny)
    Names are a funny thing. Because of my crazy name sitch, I’m more sensitive about it. I like meaningful but not weird. People have to be able to read it on the first time without second guessing. Josh doesn’t like weird either. Especially not weird spellings. And wouldn’t ya know, he ends up with a girl named MIQUE. Hello!? He’s even more traditional than I am. Some of my favorites are simple, sweet and easy to read but he refused b/c they weren’t traditional enough.
    I am NOT good with surprises. I don’t like spontaneity. And so we find out what we’re having and we decide on names. And then tell everyone. That is except for Andrew. He was named on my last day at the hospital when they forced me to. We could NOT agree on his name. I wanted Micah. Josh wanted Benjamin. Drew fits him 100000 percent. Perfect for a little baseball player IMHO. Jonathan was after Josh’s little brother that passed away. Julia is a name I always loved and he has a sister named Julie so I convinced him based on that (mwuahahaha)
    I can’t wait to find out what Walter’s true moniker is. Counting the minutes.
    Oh and I think Walter wants his mom’s friend to have a churro too.
    Miq´s last blog post ..Confessions of a Fontaholic

  16. 17

    So maybe we should talk every once in awhile so that every time I leave a comment I don’t take up half your site. Mkay? Love and Walter mucho! xoxoxo
    Miq´s last blog post ..Confessions of a Fontaholic

  17. 19

    We have always shared names when we know them. Our first girl name was so easy to decide – a name we decided on before we were pregnant. The second one was harder and we didn’t decide until a few days before she was born. My last pregnancy we did find out we were having a boy but couldn’t decide on a name until after he was born. Boys names are so hard. We like more traditional names. Our biggest obstacle seems to be that I taught high school for a few years and my husband is a high school teacher now so it is really hard to find boys names that don’t have negative associations.

  18. 20

    We didn’t share names or the gender (even though we knew!) She was referred to as ‘Humphrey’ for the duration of the pregnancy!

  19. 21

    We haven’t ever told the names of our babies until they are born. I don’t really want opinions about names.
    We haven’t ever completely picked a name until we have held and seen the baby. Our first baby we had a name picked out and then after he was born we just couldn’t see calling him that. We ended up tossing a coin between 2 different names. He is now 13 and I can’t imagine that his name could have been anything different than what it is.
    Lene Bond´s last blog post ..The Eighties

  20. 22

    HA!!! We don’t share names either because other peoples opinions can “taint” it somehow. I remember liking Avery for a boy and my mom goes “like the labels?” and that was pretty much that. We don’t like to find out what we are having though, and it’s HARD to pick two names. Boy names are just hard.
    Kirsten´s last blog post ..House stuff…

  21. 23

    For both of my pregnancies, my husband and I found out the sex and shared names. The first time around I wanted to know so that I could decorate the nursery. I also felt like I could “connect” more with the baby if we had named him…so Aidan it was. The second time around I tried SO HARD to keep the sex a secret and then keep the name a secret. Neither worked. Apparently, I get so excited that I want to shout it from rooftops or something. IF there were to be another bebe, I would try AGAIN to at least keep SOMETHING secret. Congrats to you!
    Kristi´s last blog post ..A little list

  22. 24

    I’m going to laugh when you end up calling the baby Walter because you’ve just gotten used to it. :-) (from a lurker)

  23. 25

    This is our first child (due in less than 2 weeks!) and we’ve chosen to keep her name a secret. We found out the gender and are having a scheduled C section for medical reasons, so we figured we could keep SOMETHING a surprise!
    Beth´s last blog post ..Prayer before meals…

  24. 26

    our first child (boy) was an in vitro baby so nothing about that pregnancy was a surprise including his name, sam! with baby number 2 (a girl, conceived while nursing, well, not actually while nursing but you understand ~ how crazy is that after all we went through with the first) we also shared her name before she was born, we named her meredith jane. after a failed in vitro and three more years of trying baby number 3 was a shock! my hubby wanted to know the gender but i did not. one night while looking through the baby book i commented that 1/2 of this book is totally useless but he could not let on. we kept the names a surprise with that one and we named her morgan grace. GOD is indeed good.
    sandi´s last blog post ..mount trashmore

  25. 27

    We did not know the gender beforehand with our first. We had a boy’s name picked out -William Michael (Will)but couldn’t decide on a girl’s name. We did share our choice and ended up using it as we had a boy! With our second we found out the gender beforehand – a girl. We again had a hard time picking a name for our girl. We named her the night before my scheduled section and kept it a secret till Lily Grace was born. (Planned to keep it a secret even if we had her name chosen all along!)

  26. 28

    We have names chosen for our babies (when they happen) but don’t tell people until baby is born. We didn’t have enough time to give Julia a nickname because we lost her so soon. With Evan, my dad inadvertently nicknamed him the lil critter and Critter stuck. Once Evan was born he was definitely an Evan Riley. Not a Joshua Riley, Jacob Riley or Caleb Riley like we had as backups just incase.

    I also didn’t want personalized baby stuff when the name we had in mind didn’t work out. Sometimes your little Josephine looks more like a Rachel. ;) :p
    Kara´s last blog post ..Introducing…

  27. 29

    With our first pregnancy, we announced the name. We didn’t know the sex so the names were chosen just waiting on the sex. I’ve had all boys since then and my girl name has been taken by everyone I know. So I had learned to keep my names to myself. I’m a bit selfish I guess. I’m glad I waited with the others to share the names. Especially since we had all boys and everyone knew the name I had chosen for a girl. The name was a nice surprise to add with the sex of the baby.

  28. 30

    I think our husbands are cut from the same mold. Mine won’t even discuss names until we know the gender either…and this time (boy #3) we’ve barely even started discussing them. I’m 29 weeks. :-O
    As a general rule, we don’t tell our names either until he’s arrived. Both times there were a few select people who knew or at least knew what we were considering. And it drives everyone nuts! It always makes me laugh how upset people get that we won’t tell…like it’s a personal attack on them. We’ve divulged the due date (estimated, of course), we’ve divulged what’s happening below the belt, let’s leave a little something up for a surprise. Plus, I never felt like hearing people’s reactions to our names. Someone has always known or worked with someone who was the scum of the earth that has “our” name…or they just don’t generally like it. Which is fine. We do. Get over it. :-)
    Kimberley´s last blog post ..{Almost} Wordless Wednesday

  29. 31

    Gilbert…like Gil in Anne of Green Gables.
    I could be talked into that…but I’m not pregnant.
    Kimberlee Jost´s last blog post ..I Have Issues.

  30. 32

    How very exciting and congratulations! We actually kept the name(s) a secret as well, and we picked out both boy & girl names because we didn’t find out the gender until birth (c-section) day! Was a fun suprise for everyone! :) And we had a boy, love of our lives!!

  31. 33

    I’m so happy that there is someone else out there that gives their baby a “fetal name”! We aren’t finding out the gender (I’m due in 11 days!!) and we have both names picked out and aren’t sharing. It really bothers some people. But I hate saying “it” or “the baby” ALL the time. And if I say “he” or “she” people automatically assume we did find out and hadn’t told them yet. So we started calling our baby Oswald, after Walt Disney’s first cartoon character. We expanded it to Oswald Fauntleroy Oliver Corwin just to get people used to the three names, because we are totally in love with the two middle name idea. And I figured if we went with something so far fetched our “strange” names we have picked out will seem more ordinary. So from Oswald and me, happy last few months to you and Walter!

    • 34

      tha’s funny! we called our first wilbur and our second orville while they were still in my belly. a few sundays after the first was born we were bolting out the door for church and i called back to my husband “don’t forget wilbur’s diaper bag?” we had named him sam, but had called him wilbur for so long that it took us a while to relearn his real name! congratulations.
      sandi´s last blog post ..the girls room

  32. 35

    We are pregnant with number 4 right now and due Oct 1st. We share the name we picked when it’s official, but I’m the type to not give a damn if people like it or not. If you don’t pay my bills or share my bed at night, you don’t get a say. :)
    Jennifer´s last blog post ..InstaFriday. I’m on time, suckas!.

  33. 36

    I just found your blog — I love it!

    We’ve told our name choice for our first child, but then ended up changing it at the last minute! So our family knows anything can happen. But we’re lucky to not have family members that will give their true opinion if they don’t like the name. They know it’s our baby and not theirs — I know people who’ve gone through that and it sounds terrible. Now *I* can’t wait to find out the name of your baby-to-be!

    You’d better stop calling him Walter soon — it just might stick! Then you’d end up with a kid named Wally. :)
    Kelly @ Creating a Family Home´s last blog post ..Pinned It, Did It! #1

  34. 37

    Congrats on boy! And good luck on names. We have kept it a secret and announced. I vote “keep it a secret.” Otherwise your mom might say “Lydia?” “Lydia Chlamydia.”
    Wendy Hagen´s last blog post ..I Love Shaggy Hair

  35. 38

    I love that you are referring to it as Walter. So funny!
    We did tell the names, but we didn’t find out what we were having, so we would tell people our names for either a boy or a girl. But, we didn’t tell middle names.
    Mel @ The Larson Lingo´s last blog post ..Soup’s On: Baked Potato Soup

  36. 39

    I did tell people Christen’s name. But I really had no choice. I knew I was naming her after Aunt Cherie and I knew I had to tell her before she passed away. (she had cancer and died in May 1994, Christen was born that July) So I felt obligated to tell everyone else once I decided on her full name.
    Jodi´s last blog post ..Taking a Break