Surprising Number of Parents Regret Their Baby Names: Study

By Zachary Stieber

A shocking number of people regret the names they chose for their babies, according to a new study.

Some 28 percent of respondents told Channel Mum that they informed their child they regretted choosing their name.

More than 10 percent said their children told them they didn’t like their names.

While one in five dislike their chosen name because it went on to become too popular with other parents, almost one in 10 were put off thanks to a celebrity choosing it for their own child, according to the study results.

Britain’s Prince William holds Prince George’s hand as he arrives for his first day of school at Thomas’s school in Battersea, London, on Sept. 7, 2017. (Richard Pohle/Reuters, Pool)

Recent additions include the children of Kate Middleton and Prince William—Charlotte, Louis, and George—and Kourtney Kardashian’s children Penelope and Mason.

Sometimes the regret is when celebrities choose a name of an already-born child but expectant mothers and fathers don’t want their coming babies associated with celebrities and shun names like Miley, Kourtney, and Donald.

“Picking your baby name is one of the most important parts of becoming a parent – and its’ also something which everyone from friends and family to total strangers has an opinion on,” Channel Mum baby names expert SJ Strum said.

“Celebrity trends mean there are an ever-growing list of baby names to choose from, but this also means more opportunities to choose a name which you, or your child, then learn to loathe.”

Toddler boy gazes out of window
A little boy gazes out of a window. (Monika Rams/Unsplash)

The study involved 2,000 parents.

Of the respondents, 5 percent said they try calling their child a name that’s different from the one printed on their birth certificate while 14 percent have considered legally changing their child’s name.

The study produced a list of 10 reasons people regret choosing their child’s name.

  • It became really popular
  • I was pressured into choosing a name by my partner/ family member
  • I’ve just gone off it
  • I no longer think it fits them
  • My friend chose the same name for their baby
  • It’s too unusual
  • It’s difficult to spell
  • Someone with the same name became famous
  • A celebrity named their child with the same name
  • It sounds like something rude or awkward when you put it with their middle name or last name
Melania Trump and son Barron Trump attend the 3rd Annual Baby Buggy Bedtime Bash at Victorian Gardens at Wollman Rink Central Park on June 2, 2009, in New York City. (Gershoff/Getty Images for Baby Buggy)

Most Popular Baby Names

The most popular baby names for 2018 were Olivia for girls and Atticus for boys, according to Nameberry.

The full top 10 were as follows.


  1. Olivia
  2. Isla
  3. Amara
  4. Cora
  5. Charlotte
  6. Aurora
  7. Amelia
  8. Ava
  9. Rose
  10. Genevieve


  1. Atticus
  2. Milo
  3. Jasper
  4. Asher
  5. Jack
  6. Theodore
  7. Silas
  8. Wyatt
  9. Henry
  10. Finn

“Number 1 boy name Atticus represents a growing trend toward ancient Latin names and literary heroes, Theodore is a second-tier classic making a strong comeback, while Silas is a name revived by Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake in 2015,” Nameberry stated.

“For girls, Charlotte reflects the influence of the British royal family; the popularity of multicultural Amara was probably spiked by her presence as an immortal character on “The Vampire Diaries,” while Genevieve is a fresher replacement for the Jen-generation of names.”

According to the Social Security Administration, the most popular baby names in 2017 were as follows.


  1. Liam
  2. Noah
  3. William
  4. James
  5. Logan
  6. Benjamin
  7. Mason
  8. Elijah
  9. Oliver
  10. Jacob


  1. Emma
  2. Olivia
  3. Ava
  4. Isabella
  5. Sophia
  6. Mia
  7. Charlotte
  8. Amelia
  9. Evelyn
  10. Abigail