Baby Name Regret: Turns Out A LOT Of Parents Feel Remorse

The regret is real, and now we have proof.

Baby name regret is real, and now we have proof. A new survey conducted by found that nearly a fifth of U.K. parents would choose a different name for their child.

According to the survey, which polled over 1,000 parents, 25 per cent regretted their child’s name because it was “too commonly used,” whereas 21 per cent said the name “just didn’t feel right.”

Other reasons for regret included never liking the name, but giving in to pressures to choose it (20 per cent), spelling or pronunciation issues (11 per cent), and a dislike of the name’s short form (6 per cent).

But despite 18 per cent of parents admitting to feelings of remorse, only 2 per cent actually changed their baby’s name.

We saw an example of this earlier this month. According to, Maryland couple Carri and Will Kessler changed their daughter’s name from Ottilie to Margot after no one could pronounce it.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard of baby name regret either. A past survey by BabyCenter Canada found that 11 per cent of its users wished they could change their baby’s name.

On top of that, baby name expert Laura Wattenberg noted the rise in regret back in 2012. “There isn't hard data, partially because I don't know of any accessible data on name changes,” she said at the time. “But as a percentage of my mail… remorse from parents who have already chosen names is rising.”

To explain this trend, Nameberry co-founder Pamela Redmond Satran told “Parents care a lot more and think a lot more about names now than they did back then, and agonize a lot more about names than they did say in the mid-'80s.”

As a result, some parents are actually hiring companies to choose a baby name for them to help relieve the stress of the decision.

But while baby name regret might seem like a parents’ worst nightmare, Mumsnet founder Justine Roberts says it isn't necessarily a bad thing. “In some ways baby name regret is great practice for parenting: you do a lot of hard work and research, try to please several people at once, and end up getting it wrong,” she explained. “The consolation is that most children grow into their names.”

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