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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    290

    Spousal naming dispute. Need help. (Warning: it's long)

    I actually found nameberry while searching online for solutions to a naming dispute my husband and I have been having. Although I have been having lots of fun discussing names on the forums, I have yet to find an answer to my dilemma. I've hesitated about posting this because we are not actually planning on even trying to conceive for at least another 2 years, but I don't really see this issue changing, and I'd rather get a solution now rather than freaking out in the third trimester one day. I'm also a little drunk right now.

    So here is the problem. My husband is a third, but he goes by a nickname that he hates. At work, he goes by his first name, but he says that he has always wanted to go by his middle name. I suspect the reason he goes by his first name at work instead of his middle name is that his middle name is not as professional, but he would never admit to this. He thinks the next best thing to going by his middle name is having a son who is a fourth that goes by his middle. I am vehemently opposed to this, and he has his heart set on it.

    My naming style is pretty traditional. My absolute favorite girls name of all time is Charlotte (which the hubby likes! yay!). The middle name that my husband wants to call our hypothetical son is Rivers. I can't do it. I can see the appeal...Rivers is an awesome rock star name, and my husband was in a band back in the day...but I can't see it for my son. I can't imagine holding a baby boy and calling him Rivers. I can't imagine calling out the name Rivers on a soccer field. I can't imagine ever saying, "Hey, Rivers! Don't hit your sister!" I just can't do it.

    I feel like I there has to be a compromise, but he is so stubborn about it. I even told him that if he must have a fourth, that we could call him by his first name. (The first name is a shortened version of an old family name that is easy to pronounce and spell, but is not actually a "real" name. Sounds like Pete. Not exactly my style, but I could deal with it.) He says calling our potential son by his first name would be too confusing because both he and his dad go by that name sometimes. (His dad also has a nickname but goes by his first name at work.) He refuses to entertain any option other than Rivers. I even asked him what other boy names he liked other than Rivers, and he could not come up with a single one. Not a single one.

    If I could name a boy whatever I wanted, I would name him after my granddad, who I am very close to. He has a traditional first name and a cool family surname as his middle. I would use his first and middle name and my husband's last name (I did not change my last name when we married). No one is named after my granddad, and I would love to be able to honor him while he is still alive. I also think the whole naming a child after yourself thing is kind of narcissistic even though it is a popular thing to do (for males at least).

    My second choice would be naming a boy [Non-Family First Name] Rivers [Husband's Last Name]. That way we could choose a first name that our son would go by together, and he could have Rivers as a middle. Again, this idea was promptly shut down.

    This is definitely going to be a huge issue if we ever have a boy. At this point, I am just praying that we end up having all girls to avoid this argument even though I would love to have a son...just not named Rivers.

    His idea of a "compromise" is if our first child is a girl, I can name it, and if its a boy, he will. This is a problem because he likes my first choice girl name, and I cannot deal with his first choice boy name! Not a compromise, right? Or am I taking crazy pills?!

    Thank you so much if you have read this far. Thoughts? Advice? How have any of you dealt with stubborn husbands? Please help! Sorry for the super long post!!

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    London, England
    Posts
    5,340
    I'm definitely on your side. If you don't like the name, and he isn't planning on calling a possible future son by the name, it's ridiculous to use it. And I don't think it's right to use a name one of you don't like (me and my boyfriend scratched off all the names the other had a problem with because of that). This goes both ways though, so if he doesn't like your grandfather's name that should be taken off the table as well. Ask him how he would feel if you picked a named he disliked, that might do the trick. Also, most men I know aren't really that committed to compromising and finding the right name until there is an actual baby.

    Here's what I would do: Give the man a name book and a marker and ask him to find some new names he likes. You can do it together, or he can do it on his own. And if he doesn't like any of your names, you have to do it as well. Then you look at each others lists and see if you can find some common ground, and you can ask all of us for help when you have a few names you like or find tolerable.

    Good luck!

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    2,128
    I would definately be fighting a name I didn't like.
    Actually I did!!!
    My DH's family name is Raymond. I am sure some people love it, but I detest it. I bluntly said "Over my dead body, no way no how". Basically I was more stubborn than him. In the end we did find names we could both like.
    If he insists on Rivers tell him you insist on your grandfathers name as his first name. Once the baby is named only call him your gransfathers name- the name Rivers won't catch on if people don't use it.
    Me, I am probably even more stubborn, I wouldn't have Rivers OR his #4 name.

    Emilia
    BABY GIRL FINALLY DUE 5 October after 2 Years of IVF
    Delivery booked: Debuting on or before 26th September!

    Current favourite name for our little Miss: Phoebe Eliza Grace
    Other (MNs probably) we like: Rose Eloise Matilda Madeleine Charlotte Eliza Violet Kate Jade Elizabeth Iris Scarlett Felicity Chloe


    Current (but never to be used...) favourite boy names: Oliver Thomas Henry William Alexander Flynn Liam Hugo Isaac Bennett Nikolai Reid Edward nn Ned Gus Tobias Austin Blake

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    451
    I would do what ottilie said - give him a name book and let him pick out names he likes.

    Here's some suggestions:
    ~ Do you prefer just River to Rivers?

    Names that contain 'Ver' (2 syllables)
    ~ Carver
    ~ Colver
    ~ Denver
    ~ Ever
    ~ Iver
    ~ Silver / Sylver
    ~ Traver
    ~ Vernon
    ~ Weaver
    ~ Xaiver / Xayver

    Nature names (2 syllables)
    ~ Aspen
    ~ Balsam
    ~ Falcon
    ~ Heron
    ~ Timber

    Let us know what you and he thinks!
    ~ 20 year-old name lover ~

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    2,150
    From what I've read, I think your best option lies in [Non-Family First Name] Rivers [Husband's Last Name].

    Even this is a huge compromise on your part, and I think eventually your husband will come to see this. It really should take two people to name a child, if both parents are going to be calling the child by the name. Sometimes we get so caught up on what we want, that we completely ignore what our spouse is saying. I think when you're actually close to having the child, he may come around. Hell, it might take up until you're screaming your head off in the delivery room for him to think "You know, she probably deserves at least equal naming rights."

    The reason I say [Non-Family First Name] Rivers [Husband's Last Name] is the best option is because you will have that first name to decide together, like you said. I'm sure you have explained to him how you cannot imagine yourself calling out to a little Rivers, but you could tell him that he can sometimes call the kid Rivers as a nickname, and you can call him by his first name or a nickname variant of that. Tell him that your son needs that first name for his professional future. (Unless your son does decide to be a rockstar, actor, or professional football player, in which case you can later apologize lol)
    Last edited by dovah; December 1st, 2012 at 12:09 PM.
    Bonnie Clementine, Frances Matilda & Olive Hermione
    Boys Under Construction

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