Reality Check: Baby-Naming Bust-Up
My husband wants to give our baby his mom’s name, but I hate it. How can I avoid insulting everyone?
A. You need to remember that your husband has just as valid a claim on influencing the baby's name as you do -- just as he needs to recognize that singling out one grandparent over three others (or your great aunt Clara on your father's side) for such an honor might be a little unfair, too. In other words, get ready for some tactical compromising.
If you really want to be the bigger person here, you could go ahead and give the baby Grandma's first name and make her middle name different -- and the one you actually call her (e.g., Jezebel Patricia Jones, a.k.a. Patty). Or you could use your mother-in-law's name as your child's middle name. Nick, for instance, wasn't into naming the kids after other people, but I wanted to honor my mother. So we decided Lila's middle name could be Elisabeth, a formal version of my mom's name, Bettye. This way, Lila still has her own identity, plus a name that will always remind us -- and her -- of someone we loved. That's probably what your husband wants to do with your child. And that's not such a bad thing after all.