I was incredibly lucky in life and love. I landed a handsome man who enjoys the same things I do, always lets me pick whatever there is to pick, and treats me better than I sometimes feel I deserve. He lets me sleep in, eat the last piece of the pie, and decide what we watch on TV.

It’s a pretty rare occurrence for us to have a real argument. However, naming our son was certainly a task. His first name? Not a bit. I’d known for a very long time that if I ever had a son, he would have a specific name and my husband was fine with that. Our struggle? His middle name.

At some point in the past, my husband had decided to name a son after his brother. My hope was to name my son after my grandfather who passed away in 2012. We were fine with using 2 middle names, but I didn’t like the combo of those 2 particular names together. I wanted to name him after my grandfather and my husband.

This is where the true issue resided, completely in me.

For as long as I can remember, I have been an insane name lover. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what my children would be called. I also have very picky specifications : no alliteration (no Eliza Ellis for us!), no names ending in S (Amos Ellis just sounds like you have an awful lisp…), no names that start with a letter we’ve already used (that counts Bailey, Blythe, Benjamin, and Beatrix out)... The list could go on and on and on forever. That is exactly what frustrated my usually very compliant other half. He says it’s ridiculous and I make no sense. I 100% understand the concept of “just choosing a name because you love it”, but when it comes down to it, I… Just can’t.

For quite a while, the majority of the time I was baking our bun, we argued. I got legitimately upset, I cried. He got fuming mad. It was an ordeal.

In the end, we decided to go with one middle name that wasn’t a family name at all, one name that meant something to us. So my son is named after whiskey.

That sounds so silly when you say it outloud. There is an explanation though. My husband and I both share Irish heritage as well as the love of relaxing with a drink after a long, hard day. Some people drink a beer and watch football. My husband drinks a small glass of Irish whiskey and watches military movies. A bottle of this certain brand is also what I bought him as a gift for our first Christmas together (we began dating in January).

Maybe it isn’t the perfect name, but it’s the perfect name for us and our boy. The most important thing is that after all the arguments and unhappiness, we were able to compromise and choose something that we both appreciate.

I totally still asked if we could use the middle names I loved so much when I was in the midst of labor. I guess I thought he’d feel all squishy and let me have what I wanted at the last moment. I should’ve known better, but I’m a huge brat.

Now that we’ve started talking about (and quasi-planning for) Baby Number 2, we’ve been approaching the matter differently. Our girl names are pretty much the same as they were during my first pregnancy, the name we’d chosen for our son, had he been a girl, is still a front-runner. Boy names are a little more… All over the place.

Here’s what we do and what I’ll suggest for you :

Find a (modern, make sure to buy a modern) baby name book and 2 different color highlighters. You and your partner should take the time to sit and each highlight names that you, personally, enjoy. I think doing this alone is probably the idea. That way there is no influence from the other person. From there you could either make a LARGE list and whittle it down, or, if you both highlighted a few of the same names, you could choose from those.

If you’ve got a small list, but none of them just really… Hit home, you could always post on a baby name forum and ask for help with other options that you might not have thought of, or ever even heard of. Nameberry is my favorite!

If you’re like me and already have a very long list of names (I have a literally binder… Don’t judge me.), you might ask your partner to make a smaller list of names they like from that (if they’re okay with that option.)

I sincerely hope naming a child is easier for you than it was for us. I wish everyone the luxury of simply having that “light bulb” moment that provides you with the ultimate and most fitting moniker for your little one.

I have my fingers crossed for that myself…


The photo above is of my husband and I, shortly after we got married. The credit for the picture goes to S M Photography.

This article was originally posted at my publication, Fruitful Euphoria.

Published by Kylee Ellis