Baby Names: The 7 Biggest Mistakes -- And What To Do Instead

7 Of The Biggest Baby-Naming Mistakes -- And What To Do Instead

There are few things more thrilling in life than having your first baby. But newbie baby namers are prone to making some mistakes that more experienced name choosers are able to avoid.

If you're choosing a baby name for the first time, don't make one of these seven common mistakes:

1. Believing that the names that were popular -- and creative -- when you were a kid still have the same status.

Name tastes have changed radically over the last decade or two. Goodbye, Jessica and Josh, hello Layla and Serenity, Landon and Tristan -- all top 100 names.

2. Thinking that the playground rules are the same as they were back in the day.

Kids no longer get teased for having names that are unique, androgynous, exotic or hard to pronounce or spell. Rather, name diversity is celebrated.

3. Letting your parents have too much say in the baby's name.

Baby names can undoubtedly be a fun topic of family conversation. But the person who changes the diapers at 3 a.m. gets to name the baby.

4. Clinging too tightly to the name you always swore you'd give your first child.

A lot of people -- let's face it: girls -- spend their childhoods coming up with fanciful names they want to give their children. But if that name you always loved has suddenly become uber-popular or clashes with your new last name, let it go.

5. Caring too much about how cool the name choice makes you look.

Sure, pregnancy is cooler than it used to be, with cuter clothes and celebrity role models. But putting a name's cool factor above all else won't make little Bronx's life very easy.

6. Not considering subsequent children's names.

First-time namers are likely to think about, well, their first child's name, but if you name Baby No. 1 Tallulah, then you pretty much rule out Lula, Lila, Delilah, Sula, Tally and maybe even Louis for subsequent children.

7. Not realizing that there's going to be a real live baby ... and child ... and, eventually, grownup on the other end of the naming decision.

We get it that it can seem like your pregnancy is all about you. Sometimes, it can almost come as a shock when an actual baby emerges in the delivery room, instantly asserting her own needs and personality. Try to keep that little (and eventually big) person in mind when you choose the name she'll live with forever.

Pamela Redmond Satran and Linda Rosenkrantz, founders of, innovators of baby-name content on the Web. Got a name craving? Learn more about baby names at

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