You can call the child ‘Tommy’ for all he/she cares a long as you bathe the baby, soothe him/her, clothe him/her and feed him/her when he/she demands it. However, the name you select for the child takes on a different meaning altogether when he/she starts going to school.
The name is greatly influenced by its meaning and relevance in that particular generation. Here are some tips to keep in mind while choosing a name for the baby.
How To Choose A Baby’s Name
Liking for the Name
Make sure you and your spouse are on the same age when it comes to keeping the name. You should both like the name especially its meaning and the sound of the name.
The Meaning of the Name
Select a name, which has some significance or meaning. It should signify love, virtuosity of generosity or should have mythical/religious significance. Such a name gives the child a feeling of security and belongingness to the world at large.
Select a Name that Fits
You can choose a name such as ‘nainika’ for a girl with beautiful eyes or ‘nayantara’ for a child who is truly loved and treasured. You can also choose a name that has a mixture of the parents’ names provided it has some meaning. Choose names that also depict hope or patience. Relevance with gods, the moon and the sun also take on special significance. Christians especially go in for names that have been named after Greek gods and goddesses.
How will the Name Sound to Others?
Choose a name that has a lilting quality to it and not something people will later ridicule or scoff at. Choose names that cannot be distorted or changed in derogatory ways. Check the initials. Do they mean something that can make the child the butt of people’s jokes? Nicknames for the actual name can trigger insults and teasing. So make sure the name you choose makes it easier for the child to live with later on.
Easy to Spell and Pronounce
Do not choose a name that is exceptionally long especially if you have a long surname. Choose one, which can be spelt only one way. Ideally, the name should not have more than 6-7 letters and should be easily pronounced. Names can be often misspelt and badly pronounced only to create confusion and embarrassment for the child later on. Unusual names of course are welcome as they set you apart from the rest.
Avoid Trendy, Meaningless Names
Avoid names that are in fashion because they have been named after a celebrity’s child. These do not last long and often have little relevance when it comes to their propriety and meaning.
Don’t use Nick Names
You can address the child by his/her nickname at home but restrict its use outside. Nicknames are often funny and this can provoke tormenting and ridicule with the child’s peers and friends.
Do not Choose the Year’s Top 10
There are high chances that you pick a name which figures in the top 10. This will mean that your child will be saddled with ten Alice’s and ten johns in the class along with him/her. Too many people of the same name creates boredom and confusion.
Grandparents are often tempted to name their grand children out of sentiment, traditional or religious reasons. While this is ok, see whether you all are on the same page when it comes to choosing a name. Selecting an outdated name that was more relevant 50 years back does not make sense. Choose a name instead which has the same meaning as the one chosen by the grandparents or incorporate their name as the middle name. Ultimately the parents should have a say where naming the child is concerned.