Name carryover?

Quick question for today: I think this might apply mostly to those who don’t find out the baby’s gender before birth, but if you decide on a boy name and a girl name for your baby-on-the-way, do you carry over the unused name and consider it for the next baby, or do you now cross that name off your list?

For example, if you decided on Adam for a boy and Anna for a girl, and you had a boy, do you consider Anna for a girl the next time you’re expecting, or do you cross Anna permanently off the list? Why or why not?

We carry over the name. We’ve had the same girl name picked out through all of these boys, and if we ever have a girl, it will be her name. But I’ve heard from time to time from other parents who feel like, using the names from the examples above, Anna somehow seems like it *belongs* to Adam — it would have been his name if he were a girl, and now it seems Anna would be inappropriate for any other sibling. I’d love to hear your thoughts/experiences!

17 thoughts on “Name carryover?

  1. We carry them over. We have a top girl name and boy name picked out and will use the girl name for the next girl and the boy name for the next boy. Unless something came up in the meantime to change our minds (doubtful) they are set in stone.

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  2. We carry over–we have two lists of full names ready to go, so we know exactly what the next boy or next girl will be. There’s room for the list to change, but after each baby’s birth we kind of ‘lock down’ the next top names. This way, as soon as we know the sex, we can start calling the baby by name. And it just cuts down on one more source of anxiety during pregnancy.

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  3. We carry over, but it’s not set in stone. When the next baby comes the discussion begins again with the last “unused” name on the list, but others are there as well. It’ll be interesting to see if we ever have another boy which of the carried over names he’ll get, maybe he’ll be like European Royalty and have them all.

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  4. There are some names that we’ve carried over and some we haven’t. With each baby, it seems like we feel certain names speak more to us than others and I think that’s the Holy Spirit inspiring us for that particular baby. Isabella was going to be our first if a girl, but it was never a contender later. Then again, I had a feeling that we would have a Rosie, and we stuck with it through two babies.

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  5. We have usually carried over the name, including the times we found out the baby’s gender in advance, which we have on some of our babies and haven’t on others. We didn’t carry over the boy’s name after we had our second daughter. Mainly that was because we had a terribly difficult time coming up with one in the first place and didn’t like the final contender that much. I don’t know if we’ll carry over our girl’s name or not. It does have an initial problem with our last name but I’m trying to decide if that matters or not.

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  6. We carried over the names from our first and second pregnancies and used them for our 2nd and 3rd children. However since then (we have 6) we haven’t carried over. Our early choices were such favorites that they were “no-brainers” in a way. Also my increased interest in names seems to have made sticking to a top choice harder.

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    • Oh and interestingly the girl name that we had picked for our 3rd baby (a boy) and didn’t use on our fourth baby (a girl) is now again my top pick if we ever have another girl.

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  7. The name we are most likely going to use for our third child was a possibility for our first two. Though, we always allow for change in preference. I have definitely dismissed some of the names we were throwing around the first time, because they no longer match our naming style or wouldn’t sound right with our sibling set.

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  8. As someone who finds out the gender (except with our first child), I have to say, we haven’t always done the name ‘carryover.’ We lost our second baby and the name I was planning on using if the baby was a girl, didn’t seem to fit our next baby who was indeed a girl. I still love the name, but don’t know if I would ever use it (didn’t use it for our second daughter either!), I think, because I associate it with our miscarried baby. We have basic name list for each baby that seems to carry over, but inevitably, I think our tastes/likes have changed, so some names have moved to the top or bottom.

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  9. We definitely carry over. We have a very short list of names we even agree on! Since we’ve had one boy and one girl, we’ve had the opportunity to discuss both genders (we find out at 20 weeks), and so we have top names if we ever have more. That said, I am totally writing in to this blog for help if we have more because I feel like it’s worth revisiting the name discussion with each child, and I’ve since come across other ideas we didn’t have the first two times around.

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  10. Generally we carry over, but we’re open to new names too. My 2nd has a name that was carried over from my first pregnancy, but we changed his middle name at the last minute. We decided on a completely different name for #3 than the one we’d had planned for #2 if he was a girl. #4’s name is the one #3 would have had if he was a boy. And the girl name I want for #6 is one I’ve had in mind since pregnant with #2 but have never used.

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  11. Fun question!

    We carried over the same girl name for all 4 boys, actually the same list of top 3 girl names (paired with middles). But people close to us have since used almost-identical versions of the top two. So I have a new set of 3… my first set was very Germanic, but the new list is very soft and vowel-y.

    We also have had the same backup boy name for the last 3 boys, assuming it would be the top choice for the next boy. But my pick for boy #5 might make that name unusable for us now. So hard to let go of a good name though!

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  12. So fun to read all your thoughts.
    Being a Grandmom, i look back so lovingly on the baby naming time for my little ones who are all grown now….they each seem to have the names they were meant to have, and have gone on to choose beautiful names for their own children.
    I don’ t think their dad & i
    were closed to possibilities, but we seemed to stick with pretty much our group of spectacular names…each & every one!

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  13. We carry over. Sort of. The boy name we would’ve used with #1 kind of slipped way behind for the following four kids, but it is still on our list. We haven’t ruled out any of our names, unless someone we are close to has used it, at which point they turn middle name or move way to the bottom. Usually when I find out we are expecting again, we revisit the leftover name from previous pregnancy and sometimes it has felt right, and others it was put back on the list for maybe next time. We love talking about names and had twelve kids’ names picked before we even got married. We have pretty similar taste for which I am so grateful! Although, recently, my husband has been trying to push more for strong, not typical, almost redneck-but-not names, that don’t seem to fit our flow. He says flow doesn’t matter, but I think it does, and I think deep down it matters to him too, he just really likes these new names! haha! 🙂 However, I think with the right kind of middle name, some of his new favorites might be doable, or even with the right kind of first name that works with our line up, one of his could make a decent middle name.

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  14. We do not carry over names. They get tossed after we find out the sex of baby and then again the list gets narrowed after the baby’s birth. Every pregnancy must start with a clean slate of names.


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