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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013

    Help! Family Name Thief

    Hi everyone!
    I have 4 daughters, Charlotte(8), Eleanor(4), Madelyn(3) and Rosalie (4weeks), I had come on nameberry to help with naming my youngest Rosalie who goes by Rosie, Rosalie was never a name that I had considered but Rose was always going to be the middle after my husbands grandmother who passed a few years ago. But when I saw our little Rosie I completely fell in love with the name and fits her so well (she is so far the best baby out of my bunch quiet, calm and so precious)
    Anyways yesterday was Thanksgiving (Canadian) at my husbands side and his first cousin was there and she is about 5 months pregnant (with her first) and all she did was go on and on about how she wants to name her baby after her grandmother if it is a girl. She even mentioned how cute it would be if the two girls grew up with similar names. I feel like if that was the case my love for little Rosie's name will fade. I don't want my daughter to be known as "big Rosie" growing up.. My husband has always butted heads with this particular cousin and he was ready to go at her but I calmed him down but I'm as upset as he is. We both agreed that we have nothing to worry but they don't plan on finding out the sex until he/she is born but by then will it be too late? Another thing is that we are a pretty close family who sees each other on holidays and birthdays so we do see each other quite a bit.

    What do I do? Am I over reacting? I feel a little bit guilty because Rosalie was never on my radar and cousins sharing a middle name is a cute way of honoring a family member (me and my cousins share the same middle) which was my idea the whole time. Was I being selfish taking that name from the family? My in laws love the dedication and no one has made any comments about it until this cousin...


    ps: this cousin complained with every daughter we had that we are stealing all the good names lol

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    I think that you calmly & civilly should have said something in the moment, in the big family group so your opinion on the matter was known. Since you can't go back in time maybe you can bring it back up at the next family gathering so when she mentions how cute & great cousins sharing a name is you can say that it's not something that appeals to you and tell them why and maybe mention a solution, like a Rose- name is OK, but not Rosalie and not nickname Rosie. You obviously can't stop her from using the exact name, but you can let it be known that the idea bothers you and maybe if you let your opinions & boundaries about it be known, she will think it over and respect you enough to "give you" full ownership of the names Rosie and Rosalie, and "take" Rosemary or something for herself and never refer to her daughter as Rosie.

    I had a name thief in the family but it wasn't a family name. They basically got me talking names while we were both pregnant and in a big group at a family gathering and told me the names they were using were set in stone and I figured who would steal a name and our taste is so different...well obviously they stole my name for one of their twin daughters. It was awful. But the fact that the entire family was witness to this conversation and knew how I felt really helped me get through the ordeal. Letting your feelings be known might not change anything, but it's good not to suffer in silence and to give the person a way out of hurting you as maybe, hopefully, that isn't their intention. Maybe her initiating that conversation was her way of figuring out how you & your husband feel on the matter. You should let them know.

    I suggest doing it at a family gathering only so she can't retell the story and paint it differently & make you seem like a name claiming crazy person!

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Firstly, I think it's a bit rude of her not to ask you if it's okay to use the same name. However, it's her grandmother's name, so she probably feels it's fair game. And you know what - I kind of think she's right. If my cousin named her daughter Audrey, there's a good chance I would too, because it's my grandmother's name. So it's not really stealing a name because it's a family name. I'm sure that's how she sees it. But it's a difficult situation because obviously you want your daughter to be the only Rosie in the family. All you can really do is talk to her about it and say that you don't want there to be two Rosies in the family. Maybe she will compromise and give her daughter Rose as a middle name instead.
    ~ Violet Elizabeth Rose ~


  4. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    OK, first of all, I love all of your girl names. Great job in selecting a beautiful sib set. And congratulations on four daughters. How fun for you! Now for my 'tough love' advice.

    I come from a family of three sisters and one brother. All three of us girls plan on using family names for our children and my SIL is also a family tree namer. I'm sure you can imagine some of the bitter, bitter disputes we have had over 'favorite' family names. Because let's be honest, there are only so many 'good' names on a family tree, and there are only so many ways to be creative. So, I would take into consideration how many names you have used from your shared family tree. If this is 4/4, then I would cut them some slack.

    Also, the larger the family, the more difficult sharing can be. (For example, my dad is the youngest of 9 children. Can you imagine how many cousins I have, all with one set of the same grandparents? Lots of them have the same middle name, or initials, or, yes, even first name.)

    I would advise you to try and make peace with the possibility that your daughter might share a name with her cousin. I know you said you see them often, but do they live in the same town, would they attend the same school, etc? That to me would be a deal breaker, but, if you see them every year at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and for a short summer vacation, I don't see the real harm.

    I do understand not wanting your daughter known as "Big Rosie" or "Old Rosie." Maybe that is what you should address with your family instead. Ask them if they have an alternative nn they would be willing to consider for their daughter to keep the confusion to a minimum. But remember, if they don't, then all you can do is gently, but firmly, ask family not to change your daughter's name either.

    The reality is, this isn't your decision to make. You already have a wonderful baby girl with a precious family name that fits her perfectly. You are certainly allowed to feel upset, and to share your feelings with your family, but how will you feel if they go ahead and use the name anyway? It obviously doesn't concern them too much, or they would never have considered the name in the first place. Good luck and I hope this was a tiny bit helpful. Please keep us posted on what the baby is and what they decide to name it. Fingers crossed it works out for you.
    Last edited by frances322; October 14th, 2013 at 07:46 PM.
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  5. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    I agree with Sarahmezz that she probably should have asked rather than told you she wants to use Rose. If it's a problem, I'd talk to her about it. You should probably also consider that she may have wanted to use Rose for a long time. I've had my grandmother's name on my list since she passed away 7 years ago, and I would probably be heartbroken if a relative used it only months before my own child was due. Obviously you couldn't have known that, but it would be good to be sensitive of that possibility if you talk to her. As it is her grandmother's name, it's not technically name-stealing, but maybe if you talk to her she will back off and use Rose as a middle name or another option like Rosalind or Rosamund without the Rosie nn.
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