Once you decide to have a child, you're faced with another incredibly important decision: What to call the thing. According to CNN, in a recent poll of 1,219 mothers, 10% had baby-name regret and considered changing the kid's name. Pauline and Jeffrey Eadie named their newborn "Emma" — and 8 weeks later, they decided she'd be better off as a "Caroline". Rob Sauber and Suzanne Ramljak named their daughter Sophie — and when she entered preschool, they found that four out of 13 girls had the same name, so, when Sophie was almost 4, her parents asked her if she'd like to be called Isadora instead; she agreed to try it. "She understood our reasoning and liked the name. We weren't going to force her," says Ramljak.
Adrienne and Matt Grayson named their son Luke Beckett Grayson and regretted it almost immediately. "I couldn't shut up about how we should call him Beckett instead of Luke, and I also started mourning my maiden name, Shaw," Adrienne says. "I thought I should've made that his middle name because we weren't going to have more kids." She wanted to change his name to Beckett Shaw Grayson, so she spent hours on the phone with the Social Security office. But when her son's new Social Security card arrived, it read "Shaw Luke Grayson." Whoops!
Experts say that for parents who want to change their children's names, it's best to get the child's input if he or she is older than 2. "By 2 or 3 they have a sense of identity, and it could send mixed messages," says Dr. Karla Umpierre. "The child might ask himself, 'Do you want to change me?'" On one hand, your name is a very important part of who you are; those involved in the naming process should be happy, and free to change or amend their choice at will. Hell, if they brought you into this world, they can call you whatever they damn please! But what kind of lesson does a kid whose name has been changed learn? That it's okay to waffle? That second-guessing yourself is normal? That picking something and sticking to it is overrated? Also, since we're not talking Apple and Audio here, aren't there bigger fish to fry? Isn't the difference between Emma and Caroline almost negligible when you consider that names like Banjo, Ryder and Rumer abound? (P.S. I was almost Nicole.)