(Closed) Keeping baby name secret from family–is this normal?

posted 7 years ago in Babies
Post # 92
9053 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2010

@KatieBklyn:  I don’t think it’s necessarily  a “na-nana-na-na” thing.  We actually haven’t decided (and don’t know gender) and when you just say you haven’t decided, people then want you to tell them your entire short-list, and think it’s up for negotiation!

Post # 93
2902 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@SapphireSun:  I know that’s generally not how it’s intended, but to me, that’s often how it comes across… Especially if you’re saying it to a sibling or a really close friend. I’m sure it gets really annoying being subjected to the third degree by a nosy acquaintance, but I don’t think it’s that hard to just deflect those kinds of questions. Maybe I’ll feel differently when I’m pregnant, but I know I’ve gotten a lot of unsolicited advice about my wedding plans from friends and acquaintances, and I find it pretty easy to just say, “thanks for the suggestion, but we’ve got it covered,” or “we are still talking about it, I’m sure we will settle on a good choice soon!” But maybe I’m just more comfortable being evasive and non-committal. (I’m a lawyer, so comes with the territory I guess! Lol.)

Those other questions are just straight up inappropriate. I’m sorry you have to go through that. People should really learn some manners!

Post # 94
1833 posts
Buzzing bee

I’m kinda surprised by how many here are planning on this and how many say how common it is!  In my 53 years I’ve only ever known one couple who did this and the wife was the ultimate drama AW queen.  I am NOT calling anyone here that.

I guess what keeps rolling through my mind is are all these people who will criticize the names ahead of time really going to put on their “play nice” face when they hear it and the baby is already here?  I was raised by a guardian and she did not like my oldest DD’s name.  I would have been heartbroken to have my new baby in my arms and hear my guardian’s comments.  There are many in my family who wouldn’t care if the baby was here or not – their comments wouldn’t change…and I would have been devastated! 

Different things work for different people.  OP – I don’t think this is a personal snub since this is how they are treating everyone.  I will say, since this is very uncommon in any circle I run in, I’d be ticked off!


Post # 95
827 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

My SIL admitedly tried to get my husband drunk recently to try and get him to spill the name of our child (due next month).  I was SO PISSED when I heard this.  I mean, we aren’t telling anyone the name until he’s born.  That’s our decision.  Deal with it.  Why can’t people just be patient?

Post # 96
1430 posts
Bumble bee

My friends kept the names of their 2nd and 3rd baby a secret. We all thought it was annoying but if they wanted some element of surprise that is their decision. 

Post # 97
413 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@MrsPhilly:  +1 My family/friends have had strong opinions about names. Would rather keep it between my Darling Husband and myself, and announce after the birth.

Post # 98
1833 posts
Buzzing bee

@kelly105:  I would be incredibly mad at your SIL for trying that!  What did your Darling Husband say?

Post # 99
54 posts
Worker bee

I would only keep it a secret if you are going to name it Delia or Nathan.

Post # 100
1900 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I know a lot of couples that have kept it a secret, so I think it’s perfectly normal! I don’t intend to tell everyone my names for children – not even my family. Not only am I not obligated to tell people everything about my pregnancy, I’ve seen some poor, stressed-out, hormonal women/couples have their name choices berated by all kinds of people (“Oh, you have to name it after so-and-so!” “I don’t like that name, it’s too unusual/reminds me of someone I don’t like!” “Your child will be picked on so much, because the name almost kinda rhymes with something rude!”)

Post # 101
827 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

@hermom:  He kept quiet and didn’t spill the name.  Though she went through every name on the top 100 list… “…is it Jacob?   …is it Aiden?”  He told me that she actually did say our son’s name but he said, “no, that’s not it”.  After he said that she said, “good because that name is too old-fashioned.” 

It does kinda hurt when people negatively comment about the name you intend to give your baby.  But that’s not the main reason we are keeping it a secret.  My biggest reason to keep it a secret is because I think it will be fun to announce it to everyone on the day of his birth.  That’s just the way I want to do it, and I am the one carrying the baby so I think everyone should just respect my decision.

I see alot of people comment and say it’s “annoying” when couples decide to keep the name a secret.  I don’t get that.  Why is it so annoying?  Because you never learned how to be patient?  Because you are 6 years old and you just can’t stand the anxiety of not knowing every little detail about someone’s life?

And I never experienced a couple running around saying, “Guess what!  We named our baby already and we aren’t telling anyone!!”  No… it’s usually someone asking the couple, “oh, did you decide on a name yet?”  And the couple replies, “We did, but we are keeping it a secret until the baby is born.”

I just don’t understand why people feel so entitled these days.

Post # 102
1833 posts
Buzzing bee

@kelly105:  I’m glad he didn’t spill the beans!

I mentioned earlier that “I’d be ticked” (within my family) but I also mentioned earlier that this is a totally foreign concept to me as no one in my family or my social circle has ever done this.  Obviously there is a whole thread of women here who are extremely familiar with it so it isn’t something someone pulled out of their hat.

I’d like to think that after seeing so many women post on this that I will remember I may encounter this somewhere in the future and to be respectful .  You encounter new things everyday and you learn from some of them.

I think my family and social circle are the antithisis of this.  Heck, we all call with “what do you think of this name?”

I did learn a lesson a few years ago  and unfortunately it was with one of my daughters.  She called me while I was driving to an Army training course and we were chatting.  She said she had a girl’s name picked out for her baby (sex was still unknown).  She said “Stella!”  I was dead silent.  I hated the name and I was trying to spit something out and bungled it badly.  I said mommies and daddies get to pick the names they love best but she knew I hated it.  I felt like the worst mom ever.  We hung up, I prayed about it, called her back and apologized profusely many times over.  I will say from that day forward I have learned to put a smile on my face and say, “what a nice name!”, and I keep my opinions private. So, I guess, I get it.

Post # 103
199 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

I didn’t know my niece’s “real” name until after she was born, but my sister did give her a pre-birth nickname. If a couple has the willpower and what-not to keep the name to themselves, more power to them. (Me and DH–Fi at the time of my pregnancy with our now son–on the other hand, referred to the baby by name once we found out the sex, period.)

Post # 104
1401 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I’d like to add add that another good reason to keep a name secret is to avoid that awkward moment when you go ahead and name your kid that special name that your mother/sister/cousin said they absolutely hated when you mentioned it. To me, it would be a much bigger slap in the face to brazenly ignore one person’s specific opinion (especially if they’re a really close family member) than to politely turn down everyone’s offers for naming help the first place.   


One thing we do when people ask is to mention a few names we’re thinking of that are on the list but not really in the front of the running. That way, they can approve or berate someof our  choices whilst not having the chance to blitz our top picks. 


Post # 105
1023 posts
Bumble bee

I think revealing the name is different from revealing the gender. Sometimes, people have a name in mind and they change it when they actually see their baby – that happened with a friend of mine recently.

Your brother may also be protective of the name since mentioning it pre-birth may invite criticism by people (yes, even family), who don’t like the name and still think it’s up for negotiation.

Be happy for him, and respect the wish to keep the name to themselves – it’s their decision and it’s actually a quite common one. 

Post # 106
4655 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Not pregnant or planning to be, but if I were, I’d keep a baby name secret for sure. 

1. I don’t need people’s snarky opinions on what I chose (I’d be likely to be one of those “unique name” moms, I won’t lie) until there’s an actual baby attached to it and commenting makes them look bad


2. That way no one can steal it. 

No reason to get offended over this. It’s not personal.

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