Did you have confirmation that it's a girl or a boy? Congratulations! Now, how do you choose the right name? Don't worry! Emma will help you find the perfect name for your child.
Maybe you are feeling the pressure is mounting because your child will have his or her name for the rest of his or her life - unless you really screw up and he or she decides to change it - and that name will be used to define him or her, among other things. Here are a few tips to help you avoid getting into trouble by choosing a name your child will resent.
It goes without saying that your child will be the most special in the world and therefore deserves a distinctive name, but don't obsess with giving him or her the most unique name possible. There are at least 2 good reasons for that:
First, it cannot be ruled out that the reason you have never heard the name you intend to give your child is because it might be less beautiful than you think. All tastes are in nature, of course, but if the majority of people find your child's first name particularly ugly... don't impose this on your child simply because of the uniqueness of your choice.
Second, finding a beautiful name that is unique to your child at the time of birth is not a guarantee for the future: first names disappear and come back into fashion constantly, which means that the fact that your child has a unique name in his or her cohort does not mean that it will not be widespread a few years later.
You can visit sites like BabyNameWizard.com and Nameberry.com to try to predict trends in baby names, but again, this is not an exact science. In other words, if you can think of a unique name you like, that's great. But don't spend too much time on that feature.
This recommendation is quite difficult to follow at first, especially if this is your first child.
If you choose to extend the Baby Name Search Committee to your family and friends, you can reasonably expect your choices to be criticized or outright ridiculed.
That being said, don't let yourself be too affected by the opinions of others: if you really like a name suggested by someone close to you, don't hesitate to consider it, but don't assume that people who really care about you will see or treat your child differently if you choose to give him or her a name they disapprove of: they will learn to like it.
Just like the obsession with unique first names, some people have a desire to make their child's first name an almost magical word that is both a combination of their ancestors' names, a reference to a significant event and an all-in-one pun.
This approach is rarely a good idea because even if it doesn't result in an absolutely grotesque first name, you're likely to go to a lot of trouble so that in the end, no one remembers exactly what the name was supposed to mean... including you.
On this aspect, there are essentially 2 schools of thought: those who want their child's first name to lend itself to beautiful possible nicknames/diminutives and those on the contrary who want to make sure that they give their child a first name that will be very difficult to manipulate, truncate or distort later on.
There's really no right or wrong answer. Simply choose your camp and select a first name accordingly.
No matter what name you choose to give your cherub, don't worry too much about it: in the worst case, he will change it in due course!
The choice of a first name often leads to heated debates and discussions within the couple and the family. Here are some interesting facts on the subject to help you with your research.
Did you know that Emma was the most popular female name in the most recent study by Retraite Québec (2018)? The popularity of the name is spreading overseas: Emma ranked second in France and was equally popular in the United States.
American and French influence can also be found in male names such as William, Logan and Liam, the three most popular male names in Quebec in 2018.
Since 1980, the law has allowed women to give their surnames to children. In 1992, 22% of children inherited double names, a trend that is now running out of steam.
If you are considering this option, ask yourself whether the combination of first and last name is harmonious or creates a particular sound and connotation.
Charlotte with one "t"
Anne Laure Sellier, professor and researcher in cognitive sciences at HEC Paris reminds parents looking for originality that changing the spelling of a classic first name could be harmful to the child. "This little extra thing that we think is extraordinary is going to become one less thing for the person," she says. (La presse, 2018)
If you have any doubts, test it! Ask different people around you to spell the first name in question.
If, for example, 10 of your relatives write "Aiden" with an "i" instead of a "y" for "Ayden", tell yourself that your child would have had to correct and spell his name to those 10 people!
You wouldn't want your child's name to be in the (Z)imparfaites register either!
Emily becomes Emilia
Baby names ending in A are on a meteoric rise, mainly due to Latin influence and immigration.
Another explanation for this increase in popularity may be due to the paradigm shift in the pronunciation of the vowel A at the end of the word, a fear for parents that the sound of the child's name would be altered.
Indeed, in some regions, a is pronounced as an open o [Ɔ], which is sometimes perceived as a "lesser sound".
Influence of the world
English first names that used to generate some disapproval are now less of a problem.
The same goes for surnames with Mexican, Latin, Czech or even Aboriginal influence such as Savannah, Caleb or Elijah.
Again, immigration would play a role in this trend.
Popular culture greatly influences trends in first name choice. For example, we saw the popularity of the name William explode after the Little Prince of England was named after him.
The cultural impact of the Game of Thrones series is also reflected in the name Aria/Arya, which has risen from 942nd place to 119th between 2010 and 2018 among our neighbours to the south.
Boy's first names tend to be chosen as a tribute to a family member or in memory of a loved one. For girls, the choice would be based more on sound and aesthetics.
There is a well-known legacy left by a women named Maria Ann Smith, who inspired the name of the famous Granny Smith apple.
Visit our directory for inspiration!
In order to enhance your baby name search, Emma's team had a lot of fun designing a repertoire of inspirations to help you in your search.
Check out our top 100 most popular baby names for girls and boys!