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Here's What To Do If You Don't Like Your Baby's Name

Regrets, you have a few.

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Recently, my husband looked at me and said of our youngest kid, “we should have named him Ashley.” I was annoyed, to say the least. Four years ago, I wanted Ashley for our middle kid, but my husband nixed it. We settled on a name that I HATED, but it’s grown on me and suits him more than I realized at the time. As for my little baby, we didn’t change his name, but what if?

What should you do if you really don’t like the name Gertie? Get talking about it, fast. Figure out what name you DO like, and get people used to the idea. Tell your friends and family that you’re changing your baby’s name and what the new name is.

According to a BabyCenter survey, 11 percent of parents experience baby name remorse. More than a third of these doubting parents admit that if they could have a do-over, they would pick a different name.

But what to rename your kid? Before going through the name changing process, figure out if there’s a nickname you prefer. My family knows someone named “Barn.” His whole family calls him that. That’s obviously not his name. But that middle son, even though I don’t love his full name, I adore the short form of it, and I call him that instead.

If nicknames aren’t your thing, maybe consider using your child’s middle name instead of their first? My brother goes by his middle name, professionally using his first initial like F. Scott Fitzgerald.

If you still don’t like your options, get to that name change. In order to legally change a minor’s name in Canada, you have to follow a few steps, which may be a pain in the ass for some, but if you’re really serious about changing that baby’s name, you’ll have to do them.

Go to your provincial services office website. Download their name change application form, and fill it out according to instructions. Mail it in or drop off in person. There is a small fee, usually under $150.

With so many naming trends and options these days, you might regret that mega trendy name (Zuma, anyone?) or realize that you're setting your kid up for a lifetime of hardship (Abcde). What ever your reasons are, you just need to get on with it, before you regret not changing that little sprite's name after all.

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