When you’re expecting, the whole process can feel overwhelming. From getting a prenatal checkup to finding the best gear, there’s a lot to prepare for. And that’s before you start thinking about the most important decision of all: your baby name.
As it turns out, choosing a name for your little one can be as tricky as finding a good crib mattress. In fact, experts say it’s a top source of stress for soon-to-be parents. The name you give your child will be with them for their entire life—and is often the first thing they learn to spell. So you want to make sure it’s a name you love, too.
It’s easy to worry you’re bandwagoning if your girl is named Harper, or that you’ll be a bore for picking a Liam (it’s not just me—name consultants say their DMs and emails are flooded with worried parents). That’s why it’s important to take your time, think about what you really like and don’t like, consider nicknames and spelling variations, and talk through the options with your partner before you decide.
Some parents even have a naming ceremony for their babies, where the family and friends help them choose the baby’s name. It’s also worth considering whether your child will have a middle name, or if you’ll be giving them a spiritual name. And if you’re planning on giving them sibling names, it’s helpful to see how they pair together and what the initials would look like.