Let your child choose his/her sibling's name?

Have any of you let your older child(ren) choose the name of a younger sibling? Did it work out?

We’re starting to think about giving a shortlist of maybe 2-3 names to our older child and letting her choose from among them. Not sure whether we or she or even the new baby…may come to regret this decision in time, or whether it’ll be worth it to allow her to have a big say in his life…

My friend did this with her daughter. Her eldest daughter, [name]Tahlia[/name], was three when they had another daughter. Her parents let her choose between three names. She chose [name]Eva[/name] and they were all very happy with her choice! [name]Just[/name] make sure you love all your shortlisted options and you’d be happy with whichever name your child chose!

I definitely would want their input and for them to be included.

I wouldn’t let them have the final say exactly, but I would definitely want them included. If they’re top choice is one I love, perfect! If it’s one I can’t stand, sorry kiddo, it’s not happening.

I had a say in both of my brothers, my 14 year old brother’s first name is one I chose. We don’t call him by it however.

I think letting them choose from a short list of approved names is totally acceptable. Letting them come up with something on their own is a different story. Unless you’re ok with your child being named something like Cowboy or [name]Strawberry[/name]. (depending on their age of course)

I wouldn’t let my child choose their siblings’ names. That’s a decision for the parents to make, although I have nothing against the idea of taking input from older siblings.

It’s a sweet idea, in theory, but we got our kids’ input the last time around, and when DH and I ultimately decided on a name that our then 5 year old disagreed with, it was not pretty! He is still upset about it, and this pregnancy, praying for a boy so we/he can use the name that was his top choice last time. But as others have said, if you’re certain you’ll be absolutely fine with any of the names on your short list, no harm in involving other kids. I’m trying to keep their input limited to choosing blankets and onesies this time!

We made sure our two year old could pronounce all our top choices before adding them to the list but didn’t ask for ideas as she was too young. Choosing from a shortlist is a lovely idea.

I do think it’s a nice idea to see if your child can pronounce your top choice.

Personally, I don’t think I would give an older child a real say for various reasons–conflict, ownership, objectifying…I don’t know. I guess it would depend on the personality of the child, the reasoning for letting the child choose, and how firm/loose you are in your choices. I can imagine it having both horrible and fantastic outcomes depending on the situation.

I chose my sisters name, [name]Isabella[/name], back in 2002 when I was seven. My mum liked it because of a song; and my stepfather liked it because he preferred names that ends in -a, so they decided to go with my choice. Would I have chosen a different name today? Yes, but I don’t think that [name]Isabella[/name] (or [name]Isabel[/name] - I gave them options) is a bad name.

Personally, I wouldn’t let any future children name a younger sibling. I would, however, definitely take input. [name]Say[/name] if I was in between two names, I would most certainly ask the older sibling/s which name they preferred. I’d might even let them pick a middle name if I liked it.

I don’t think I could hand over the final choice to my children but I would like their input if they were older. My eldest will be 3 when baby number 3 arrives so I will mention names to her and see if she can pronounce them but that’s probably about it. If she had free rein on choosing a name we would probably end up with something like “Cupcake [name]Rainbow[/name]” haha

I agree with this smart lady. Of course it can be a sweet bond, but I imagine resentment from the little sister/brother. What if they hate the name? I want this to come back to me, if my child hates their name I want me to be the reason, not their big sister. And I want my other children’s names to have as much love and care put into them as my first. Might be the little sister in me, but I don’t ever want [name]Rosalind[/name]'s siblings to feel like they are less important in any way.
As for pronouncing the name; that’s what cute adorable nicknames are for!

Forgot to add, a friend’s nephew suggested the name Speed Boy for her baby, so maybe don’t give them total free reign!

My niece chose my daughter’s name. But it helps that we have similar taste. Which may be worrying, given that she’s still in preschool…!

I “helped” my parents, to name my brother [name]Phillip[/name], when I was three! But only because I watched sleeping Beauty… Atleast that was the name they wanted anyway, so… I also helped my sister, [name]Maja[/name], naming her daughter [name]Silke[/name]. I gave them some choices and they stood between [name]Sally[/name] and [name]Silke[/name], until she was born.

I would probably allow my daughter some input if she were older, but it would still be the decision of myself and my DH. While I would allow her weigh in and take her opinion into consideration, it would ultimately be our choice.

She has zero input for this sibling, but when told a hypothetical sister might be named [name]Rosaline[/name] she said “Cool, I’m going to call her rosiecheeks for short!” which I think is cute, and I’m happy to go along with that :slight_smile:

I think letting children have some input is great and letting them choose from a small final list is ok too if you really love every name on that list and wouldnt mind which one they chose but I would never in a million years hand over all naming responsibilities to a child. If this was the case a friend of mine would have had baby ‘lightpost’ thanks to her 5yr old! I have heard a story of another couple letting their son choose, they now have another son named ‘Beema’

I think it depends on the age of the child and the situation. The last thing I would want to do is let the child think they got to pick and were disappointed/ended up resenting the new baby because it didn’t have the name they wanted. If they came out with a good suggestion that we liked (unasked for) I might consider it as a middle or something. If we were really caught between two names, I might ask the child which one they like better (not mentioning it as being for the new baby). I wouldn’t want my hypothetical two year old naming her sister ‘[name]Rainbow[/name] Fairydust’ or brother ‘Bumface Smellypoo’, but an older, school-age child I might use to gage popularity/potential issues with the name, like if there’s some popular cartoon character by the name I wasn’t aware of.


When we were naming our daughter, if I had used my son’s suggestion, our daughter would have been Doofenschmirtz or PhineasandFerb, regardless of gender.

I think that would be cute! The older child would probably develop a deeper connection to the younger one. :slight_smile:

In my country, this is common. Parents chose names easy to pronounce by they older children, but I think this is silly. Children will be able to pronounce all names in few years. I once discussed with person whose mother try to persuade her to name younger child [name]Ana[/name] ([name]Ah[/name]-nah, I think), because that’s the only names older child could say.

Also, they include older child in discussion.