Considering a name change for our 10 month old

Ok all. Need advice. My daughter (4th kiddo, 2nd daughter) is nearly 11 months old. And her name has not felt right since the beginning. We hesitated in the hospital, flip flopped and all that. And then went with the name which had been a consistent top contender. And I’ve regretted it since. My husband is sad that I’ve regretted it and is open to changing her name.

Her name is Helena, pronounced Hel-En-Uh (not Hel-Ain-Uh), which is just the more natural pronunciation for us both. But our preferred nickname was Laney, so that’s what we call her…even though it doesn’t make much sense for how we pronounce her name :woman_facepalming:t2:. That’s an annoyance to me. We have tried to pronounce it differently but it doesn’t stick.

The other problem is that so many people say her name differently, and even people we see fairly frequently don’t get it “right”.

Also…she is our last baby, and the name I’ve always loved and never used was Darcy. I talked myself out of it for lots of silly reasons, mostly having to do with what other people might think. And I regret not using it. My husband even asked when I was pregnant if I would regret not naming her Darcy, and I was adamant that I was ok with it…but I was wrong, and now I regret it.

So. This was long, I’m sorry! But what do you all think? Is it nuts to change a baby’s name at 10 months? Plus she responds to Laney now. Ahh.

Should I just learn to live with it? I know this is such a ridiculous situation, believe me! So please be kind :joy:.

Other kids name are Jeffrey (Jay), Virginia (Ginny), and Mark. All named after special people in our lives. Helena is not a tribute name, just thought it was pretty and the meaning was beautiful (bright). Darcy is not a tribute name either- but I love Jane Austen books and have read Pride & Prejudice at least once a year since I was in 8th grade so it’s special to me.

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Darcy is lovely! I don’t think it’s crazy to change her name. You could change it and add Helena as one of her middle names so that she could still be Laney as well as Darcy! I know lots of people who go by a nickname for their middle name — not that she’d have to always go by Laney, but that way she can have both while she’s little!

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I think after reading your post
it is quite clear that you and
your husband are having
second thoughts on the
wisdom of selecting [name_f]Helena[/name_f]
for your dear daughter. I personally
think that if you believe that [name_u]Darcy[/name_u]
is the name you have always loved
and felt a strong connection towards,
then by all means use it. Legally change
your wonderful daughter’s name. It
is not too late at this early stage
of her life.

Best of luck to you! :+1::four_leaf_clover:

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I’d change it! While [name_f]Helena[/name_f] is a lovely name, it sounds like it was never really the name for you. She’s still really young and while it might be a bit of an adjustment, it shouldn’t take her too long to get used to being called [name_u]Darcy[/name_u]. I think you should do what feels right and it sounds like you might always regret it if you don’t change her name.

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Babies are resilient and she can easily pick up on a new name. I’ve seen people who adopted children even older than 10/11 months change the child’s name and they adjust much more easily and quickly than most people expect. [name_f]Helena[/name_f] is a beautiful name but it seems like it was never her name. And even though you said [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] isn’t an honor name for any family, it is still honoring something very important in your life. It’s better to go ahead and change her name now than to continue to regret it the rest of your life.

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Hmm, I’m generally a bit less enthusiastic about name changes than the average berry; I think once the child responds to their name it becomes their name rather than having to be the perfect name to the parents. As you also have other children who have been using her name, I think giving your daughter a completely different name would be a little confusing, especially as you do like the name Laney.
Honestly, I’d just change her name to Laney or introduce her exclusively as Laney, keeping Helena for paperwork only.
However, I would add Darcy as a middle name, that way she could choose to use it in the future and perhaps your name regret would be lessened.

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I would change it! She is still young enough that she won’t know any difference, and she’s got a lifetime ahead of her! She deserves to have a name that her parents truly love, since a name is one of the first gifts given to a child! Would you go with [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] [name_f]Helena[/name_f]? That would be a lovely combo, and she could still go by [name_f]Helena[/name_f] when she is older if she wants to!

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Technically you could change it and she would adjust fairly easily, even though it could take some time because she responds to her name now. But it’s not just about her. You have older children who will also need to adjust. I don’t know how old they are, but it could be confusing for them. And don’t underestimate what a hassle it would be to tell everyone in your and your daughter’s life that she has a different name now, and all those people will have to adjust as well.

I have four children myself, our twins are just a little older than your daughter, and when I think about changing their name at that age… I can hardly imagine it. Not for myself, but for them and my other children, and everyone around…

So yes, you can still change it if you absolutely want to, but I tend to agree with @OpheliaFlora on this one. Maybe settle for [name_u]Laney[/name_u] so she can go by that and use [name_f]Helena[/name_f] as her official name for paperwork only.

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I feel you had me at changing UNTIL you mentioned that she is already responding to her nickname and until you mentioned your lineup of kids. Kids are resilient and can adapt but you also had your hesitation with [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] so it doesn’t even necessarily sound like [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] should be the fn. I’d honestly take @OpheliaFlora advice. Introduce her as [name_u]Laney[/name_u] for the most part and place [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] in the middle. FWIW I love [name_f]Helena[/name_f] (either pronunciation) with each of your kids. And the nn is cute! Good luck! :purple_heart:

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Agreed that I think it’s too late to change her name. [name_f]Helena[/name_f] is gorgeous and [name_u]Laney[/name_u] is adorable, and they both fit well with her siblings’ names. It sounds like you do have name regret about not using [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] so I love the suggestion of adding it as a middle name.

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I also think it is way too late to change a name at 10 months old, especially as she recognises it. It will be mega confusing for all little people involved. Call her [name_u]Laney[/name_u], add [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] as a middle name but I wouldn’t change it this far on.

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I agree with the suggestion to add [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] to her name. All such gorgeous names btw.

Then you could progressively test the waters by calling her [name_u]Laney[/name_u] or [name_f]Helena[/name_f] [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] and see what the family and your baby like the best.

I totally feel you on the last baby “name regret” though.
I just posted a very similar question to Swistle. Sometimes it feels like such a funny dilemma to have but it’s real!

Good luck!:yellow_heart:

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Maybe make [name_f]Helena[/name_f] her middle name? [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] [name_f]Helena[/name_f] is nice. And she could still go by [name_u]Laney[/name_u].

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After reading your post I would change her name if you haven’t learnt to love [name_f]Helena[/name_f] (I pronounce the same way as you do and personally love the name. I also think [name_u]Laney[/name_u] works as a nickname) then I think I would change her name before she starts going to nursery etc. The transition at 11 months won’t be as hard as when she’s 2 years. Also I think you’ll always regret not using [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] so I would just do it! If I was you I would go with [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] [name_f]Helena[/name_f] and continue using [name_u]Laney[/name_u] as sometimes people have nicknames that are not off any connection to their name but they are affectionately called it. For example my Ex boss had a daughter called D3nny-Dulc1e but they called her B0ws and she was always called B0ws. So yep [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] [name_f]Helena[/name_f] (if [name_f]Helena[/name_f] has a middle name maybe do two middle names) and call her [name_u]Laney[/name_u]! Such a sweet name. [name_f]Hope[/name_f] this helped

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Hmm I think it’d be interesting and clever if you don’t mind it, to add [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] to her name? Also isn’t [name_m]Mark[/name_m] [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] a character in P&P? Not sure if that matters to you at all or if that is why you like both names so much?

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I’d change her name to [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] [name_f]Helena[/name_f] and continue calling her by the nn [name_u]Laney[/name_u] as well as introducing [name_u]Darcy[/name_u]. Lots of kids understand they have an “official” name as well as a completely unrelated family pet name so I don’t think she’d find it confusing to answer to both [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] & [name_u]Laney[/name_u].
As she grows up she’ll probably find it a funny story that she got another name at 10months and she’ll be able to chose for herself which version (Darcy, [name_f]Helena[/name_f], Laney) she wants to introduce herself as in different situations.

Our daughter, 12 months, responds to [name_f]Eleanor[/name_f], Scurmidge & [name_f]Dolly[/name_f] :joy: I personally think they’re responding more to the intonation and tone of voice you use towards them than the actual name for the first year or so anyway. Think how you say your husband or even your older children’s names compared to your baby’s- I think they recognise that they’re being spoken too based on the way we speak to them.

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[name_f]My[/name_f] mother’s best friend from college renamed her baby after a few months. It was the best decision. They never looked back! I think you should go for [name_u]Darcy[/name_u]. It can just be a story you tell when she’s older. Please keep us updated! We all want to you to be in love with your baby’s name :slight_smile:

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[name_m]Mark[/name_m] [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] is a character based on [name_m]Fitzwilliam[/name_m] [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] in [name_f]Bridget[/name_f] Jones’ Diary. I don’t think it’s noticeable.

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Totally right! Sorry I crossed my wires there, I love [name_f]Bridget[/name_f] [name_m]Jones[/name_m] movies and I watched those before P&P, so I guess I filled in the “Mr.Darcy” with [name_m]Mark[/name_m] in my head.

Either way I think adding in [name_u]Darcy[/name_u] somewhere is a good idea. I’m in a similar dilemma myself with my 14 month old, but I will save that for a different post. [name_m]Just[/name_m] know you are not alone, and this decision is so hard and emotional and totally understandable. I hope you find a solution that will work for you and your family. I think kids can totally go by different names or nicknames in different settings or with different people. [name_f]My[/name_f] 3 year old responds to at least 3 names (2 nick names, and her name said with Spanish and [name_f]English[/name_f] pronunciations).

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