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Baby Naming Regret Is On The Rise

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Christina Rutz, Flickr

It’s one thing when Gwyneth Paltrow names her child Apple, or M.I.A names her’s Ikhyd. Those celebrities have the resources to deal with the problems that can arise when a child is given an odd name. However, experts are increasingly seeing ‘naming regret” among normal folks who give their babies not so normal names.

In 1950, 79 names covered 50% of all the babies born in the United States. Now that number is up to 546. And as naming has become more diverse, naming expert Laura Wattenberg reports more and more parents are writing her to say that they would like to have a do-over on the name they gave their child.

Among the complaints are that teachers and peers have trouble pronouncing off-beat names, and that there are associations with atypical names that parents didn’t realize when they stamped it on their youngster.

Part of the problem is also due to what is called “the paradox of choice.” Now that there are almost a limitless number of  potential names for a baby, name choosing becomes more stressful. Additionally, parents come to regret names that aren’t hard to pronounce or carry with them negative connotations because they continue to obsess about all the other names they could have given their child instead.

Wattenberg says a good way to prevent this type of regret  is to limit the number of baby names you consider from the outset.

“Just remind yourself to make your list smaller,” she explains. “And if you have a bunch of good options, that’s a wonderful situation to be in. That means that they will all be fine.”

[via The Baby Name Wizard]

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