Choosing a name with a bad personal association?

I have been making baby name lists since long before I was pregnant, but am coming to realize how different the process is when trying to name an actual baby girl! My usual name preferences are very much on trend (much to my dismay, the long, flowery, vowel-heavy names I have always loved have become prohibitively popular for me).

I really adore the name [name_u]Kit[/name_u], which I had absolutely never considered for a girl before, because I have always envisioned it on a boy. But for whatever reason I fell in love with it for my baby girl.

My husband has been very generous with listening to my endless baby name musings and letting me keep names on the list that I know he has reservations about. But my husband immediately vetoed [name_u]Kit[/name_u]. He said despite it being a lovely name, there is a man named [name_u]Kit[/name_u] in his social circle whom he does not like. He worries that he will think of this man when he sees our baby girl and that he will get a hard time from folks in his circle who know this [name_u]Kit[/name_u]. My husband had never mentioned this person before, so I cannot imagine it is a deep personal connection. But all the same, I tried to be ok with forgetting about the name, thinking that I would not want to give my daughter the name of that mean girl from high school, etc. But I am absolutely in love with the name [name_u]Kit[/name_u] for our daughter, and it has stuck with me so powerfully, in a way that none of my names (even those from my beloved top 10!) has.

I desperately need your help! Should I let a name that I love go for this association my husband has, or should I fight for it? Does anyone have experience with a bad association with a name that ultimately they used on their child, and either regretted it or found that the association disappeared? Has anyone forgone use of a name that they wish they had used or are glad they didn’t use because of a bad association? Thank you for your advice!

You should let it go. Sorry.
When we were naming out kids my husband would listen to app my reasonings to consider names and either veto, approve or say it might grow on him. If it was a hard veto I respected it. Almost every hard veto was due to a previous association. I didn’t have to understand why his association was so strong or believe the association would prevail. I just reminded myself that if he kept pushing for a name that I associated with someone I didn’t like, I’d be furious.
I think sometimes knowing a name is a hard no makes it even more magical for a period. It’s the name you can’t have so you fall more and more in love with it. But look at it logically: there are millions of names out there. It’s not fair to insist on one your husband doesn’t feel comfortable giving his daughter. Together you will find a name you agree on and I promise you it’ll fit her well and you’ll be happy she has a name that both you and your husband are proud of.
I think if you named her [name_u]Kit[/name_u],his association with the the man [name_u]Kit[/name_u] would fade in time. But I think he’d still feel weird around mutual acquaintances of his and man [name_u]Kit[/name_u]. And I think this embarrassment would make you sad.
Good luck.

I think you should respect your husband’s veto. If he loved a name but it was the name of someone you couldn’t stand, or had hurt you deeply, you probably wouldn’t appreciate it if he kept badgering you about it even after you explained why you didn’t like it.

My husband vetoed all [name_f]Rose[/name_f] names, which was very disappointing for me, but I let it go. He knew how much I loved [name_f]Rosemary[/name_f], and thought on it for a while, but in the end he apologized and said he really couldn’t get over his negative association with [name_f]Rose[/name_f]. Maybe one day he’ll get over it, but in the meantime, I [name_u]LOVE[/name_u] our daughter’s name and I can’t imagine her as a [name_f]Rosemary[/name_f]/[name_f]Rosie[/name_f].

If it makes you feel any better, he also originally vetoed [name_f]Phoebe[/name_f], which I loved (like, he hated it for years) but we ended up using it. He said the fact that I told him how I felt but still respected his opinion and didn’t press the issue made him more open to imagining it on an actual child. Plus, when she came out she was my mini-me and that pushed him over the edge.

In the end, I know there will be names that I love that I’ll never get to use. [name_f]Eve[/name_f], [name_f]Rosemary[/name_f], and [name_f]Ariadne[/name_f] are already out. But I still love plenty of other names, these are just a few that got away.

P.S. You could always try for a name that [name_u]Kit[/name_u] could be a nickname for. [name_f]Katherine[/name_f], [name_f]Keturah[/name_f], Christine/Kristina/Kristin, Kirsten, or any K name with a T middle name. Kirsten is probably my favorite.

I agree with PPs, I’m afraid. A hard veto should be respected. I know it can be hard once you have it set in your head that this is The Name for your baby girl, but unfortunately if your husband is against the name, it’s not The Name. I think you have the right idea trying to put yourself in his shoes but you have to remember that different people deal with things differently. While you might be able to forget a less-than tasteful person for the sake of using their name, not everyone is able to do that. I think I’m similar to your husband in that a terrible person can really ruin a name for me.

I agree with @llbaby22 that the fact that the name is forbidden can make it seem more magical. I do think there’s something to be said about how you’re loving it more than your top 10… to me, that sounds like it’s more of a passing crush rather than a true favorite. Perhaps it’s different for others but I know that my top 10 names are all names that I have a deep, personal connection to, and a few days crushing on a new name doesn’t mean it deserves a spot in my absolute favorites.

I agree with PPs - I know that it hurts, but I think you need to let [name_u]Kit[/name_u] go. While I don’t think that your husband would forever think of this man he dislikes whenever he looks at your daughter, I do agree that there’s potential for his social circle to take note of the connection and I understand if that makes the name unusable for him. If the name were more commonly used I might vote that you let it sit on the table longer, but at least where I live I don’t know anybody who goes by [name_u]Kit[/name_u], so I would make that connection if I were part of your husband’s social circle.

Having said that, I might be on board with your using the name [name_f]Katherine[/name_f], [name_f]Kristina[/name_f], [name_f]Caroline[/name_f], or something else along those lines that could lead to [name_u]Kit[/name_u] as a nickname that you use (and that your husband is free not to).

I agree with the others. I would let it go :frowning:

I’m sorry, OP, but you’ll have to let that one go. An alternative is choosing a name with similar letters, like the suggestion of [name_f]Katherine[/name_f].

I absolutely disagree with everyone here! I think you should fight for it.

If you’ve never heard of this friend, how likely is he to stay in your lives? Was he at your wedding? Is he close to the family? If not, his association with you both will fade in time. But you may always resent being unable to use your favorite name.

Who is carrying this baby? Who is doing the physical labor to give it life? I think you, as the mother, should have the final say. Yes, parenting is a partnership and you should ultimately agree. And yes, if he absolutely refuses then that’s relevant. But it sounds to me like the name has a fighting chance, so why not fight for it?

Does he have a name he absolutely loves? Because if not, you have every right to fight for the one you love.

I think if you love [name_u]Kit[/name_u] this much, you should absolutely try to use it. I do think maybe using it as a nickname for a longer name like [name_f]Katherine[/name_f], as mentioned earlier, would be a good compromise. But you should call her [name_u]Kit[/name_u] regardless.

I was in a very similar situation in that my absolute favorite girl’s name was vetoed by my at-the-time husband. I had loved [name_f]Larissa[/name_f] for years, but he said that because his sister’s daughter was [name_f]Marissa[/name_f], there was no way [name_f]Larissa[/name_f] would work. I’m still somewhat regretful I never got to use [name_f]Larissa[/name_f], but as it turned out my daughter is definitely not a [name_f]Larissa[/name_f] (& will say so quite firmly…she’s 21 now). But I do think naming needs to be a partnership between the parents (if both parents are involved…there are certainly situations in which that doesn’t happen) & if he feels that strongly about not using [name_u]Kit[/name_u], then regardless of whether it’s a nickname or the full name, it’s going to be an issue [name_f]IMO[/name_f]. [name_m]Even[/name_m] if the guy he doesn’t like disappears from the picture, the “hangover” of the argument about the name will persist, again [name_f]IMO[/name_f]. (I realize this is probably ironic/irritating coming from me, as my daughter’s nickname is [name_u]Kit[/name_u]; she chose that for herself at age 7…sorry…)

I love [name_u]Kit[/name_u], however I agree I wouldn’t use it. Not as a full name, not as a nn. Your partner has voiced it bothers him. Not everyone comes home and talks about people they dislike. I don’t. It’s true that people come and go through out life. Three years from now, it may not be an issue, but today it is.

Names connected to negative people in our lives bother people at different levels. Some people are more affected by it than others. I agree this person probably isn’t a HUGE part of his life, but it clearly bothers him. [name_m]Long[/name_m] winded, but I think a hard veto needs to be respected

In this situation, I wouldn’t use it. I’m sure once it was attached to your little girl the other association would fade, but if your husband feels that strongly about it then I think it’s worth respecting his opinion enough to move on. I know if I were in your husband’s shoes, I would not be happy if I felt like my partner was trying to force a name upon me.

Lastly, the thought of my husband being embarrassed to share our daughter’s name with others bc of the negative connection that they would have with the name would make me incredibly sad. I wouldn’t want him to be ashamed, questioned over it, or be met with raised eyebrows, and I wouldn’t want that association with my child even if it was fleeting. I would only want happiness and excitement surrounding the introduction of my baby to the world and that would include sharing her name with anyone in our social group.

That being said, if you feel like it was a quick judgment and he hasn’t given it much thought - I’d bring it up again and see if he would be willing to at least keep it on the list for the time being. I know that there are times that my husband has been very against certain ideas until he has had time to sit with them and he has come around later. If it was a definitive “NO!” then I’d leave it alone and keep searching.

I have to say that I’m with the majority here, sorry.
My husband is a teacher and he has often vetoed names that I absolutely love. It’s hard but I could never name our child something that has poor associations or connotations for my partner. Yes these feelings may fade but you are both deciding on this name together and both need to want it. I like previous suggestions of possibly finding an alternative name and using kit as the nickname!

I would let it go or use it in the middle.

Name associations are very strong! I personally would not choose a name with a bad association (for either partner). I know eventually the association would fade and the baby would own the name, but a name with a bad association would not even be in the running for me. This is especially the case with a rare name.

What about [name_u]Kai[/name_u] instead?