A new survey released by Mumsnet has revealed a new obstacle in choosing a baby name - grandparents
Words: Gabrielle Hernandez
It might not be something you initially consider when drafting a list of potential names for your new little one, but apparently the older generation is highly opinionated on the matter.
The UK’s biggest site for parents joined with its sister site, Gransnet, to survey over 2000 parents and grandparents.
Nineteen percent of grandparents said ‘they hate or have hated their grandchild’s name’. Fifteen percent of parents say their child has a grandparent or in-law who hates their name.
The research found that one in five grandparents hate names such as Tabitha, Aurora and Elijah for their grandchildren. ‘Odd’ and ‘unconventional’ names are loathed by the older generation. Surprisingly, so are names that seem ‘old fashioned.’
Topping the list of disliked names are Charlotte, Finn, Jack, Lindsay, Noah and Sally.
Who knew there could be such difficulty, even leading to dramatic family fallouts, over what should be an exciting time on the journey to motherhood.
Some family members will completely shut out others over the issue – quaintly referred to as ‘baby name wars’.
Amazingly, six percent noted a fallout over the issue and another four percent said they completely ended their relationship with the person. Quite a lot of drama over the name of an unborn child, don’t you think?
Some of the concerns seem a bit more genuine. Ten percent worried the name would ‘embarrass the child’ or were fussed a family name wasn’t used. However, some objected that the name sounded ‘made up’ or was simply ‘too ugly’ for the child. And if you completely disregard their suggestions, prepare for loathing to ensue.
Mumsnet’s research revealed that grandmothers have much stronger views than their male counterparts. Forty-four percent of researchers revealed objections came from their own mother, and forty-two from their mother-in-law.
In a last-ditch effort to get around using the ‘hated’ name, nine percent of grandparents avoid using it at all or use a shorter version of the name.
Justine Roberts, founder of Mumsnet, said ‘Choosing a baby name is fraught enough for parents if you’re only taking into account your own views; if you add grandparents’ biases to the mix it can become impossible, unless by some freakish chance you’re all in agreement that the baby has Cedric written all over him.
‘Parenthood is one long object lesson in not pleasing everyone, and new parents should think of any naming tussles as preparation for coming battles over what constitutes an appropriate outdoor outfit, whether it’s alright to cut the cat’s hair, and whether two hours is enough time to revise for a GCSE.’
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