My husband and I have always given our children (and the cat) lots of nicknames and pet names, but our youngest, who’s a toddler, seems to have been given the most out of all of us. He can say a number of words but not his own name – and now I’m wondering if we’ve confused him by giving him too many nicknames?
All of my sons go by both their proper given names and a shortened version (except the middle one whose name is Sonny), which is pretty standard I think – unless you’re a parent who’s a real stickler for full birth certificate names only. However, they also have a stack of other cutesy pet names that my husband and I dish out on a regular basis.
Combined with several variations on his real name, our littlest now has around 15 different names that we, and our other boys, use all the time. Probably a bit much, right? The nicknames are said with love, but we’ve realised that sometimes he doesn’t respond to his real name – and he can’t say it either. What have we done? The poor little mite must be so confused!
Read more about baby nicknames:
- 20 surprising nicknames for common baby names
- Don’t like nicknames? Here are baby names almost impossible to shorten
- Nicknames that have become great first names for babies
What’s in a name?
My son goes to daycare three days a week where carers and friends call him by his real name, and our whole family actually do use it daily (on top of all the other ridiculous names – ‘Lambie Pie’ is probably the craziest), so hopefully, he’ll start to recognise it soon. But until then, I wonder, should we pull back on the nicknames a bit? Our eldest has the nickname ‘Bear’ and we still use that along with his real name most days. He’s almost eight, and it’s never been a problem, he knows it’s a pet name that only his family uses for him, which I think is quite special.
Time to cull
But 15 different names? Yeah way too many. My toddler needs some consistency in his life! Surely I can cut the list down to ten, right?! Okay, maybe 12 …
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