Another Irish Name Dilemma

Hi everyone,


Back after a long absence... A miscarriage at 12 weeks last year made it emotionally difficult to think about babies.


So, a year later, I am *very newly* pregnant! It's a tense time, and we don't want to make any decisions or announcements etc until well after the 12-week mark. But the waiting and the secrecy and the anxiety is driving me a little crazy, so I was hoping you all would indulge me in a bit of useful distraction.


Regulars may remember the epic debate between my husband and I over our first daughter's name. It continues now with the possibility of a second girl. To summarize: I have long loved the Irish name Aoibheann (EE-van), which has a myriad of personal meanings for me. DH vetoed it for our first daughter, who was named Sorcha (SOR-a-ka) as a compromise between our two positions. And, I am the first to admit, it is *her* name, suits her utterly, and I wouldn't change it. However, a year after her birth, DH relented on Aoibheann; quote: "If we ever have a second daughter you can use Aoibheann". And, prepare for the flip flop once again: now that we are anticipating our second child - enh. He's not keen on it. "Well, you can still you use it, or whatever. I'm just not ever going to be a big fan", he says. Great. Fantastic. Thanks for your input.


This leads to two related questions: should I use Aoibheann, with the grudging acceptance of my husband, even though it's obvious he dislikes it? Or should we aim for another compromise name like Sorcha which I will grow to love and associate with my child?


If it helps, the compromise name he suggested is Cobhlaith (as in COVE-la), which I kind of love as well. I can see a daughter of ours with this name. But I worry that, if I pass up Aoibheann a second time, I will always regret not using it.


And finally, for the curious, our boy's name is set in stone: Callum Hart (as a combo of our fathers, Calvin and William, and Hart to honour a dear friend).

Middle names under consideration for a second daughter are: Cecily (a family name), Serenity (DH loves Firefly), and Reverie (thanks to Girl's Gone Child).


Any help, feedback, suggestions, or empathy would be so appreciated!




By Coll
July 13, 2012 11:11 PM

PPP, of course I remember you and your epic Irish name debate. I'm so sorry for your previous loss. I also took some time off from the name boards when dealing with a miscarriage and other struggles. I'm glad you are expecting again and feeling more comfortable on the boards.

I think both names are lovely, though both are also very far outside my familiarity. So I'm curious as to why the one is more acceptable with your husband than the other (since it's not a question of unfamiliar spellings or pronunciations, the way it would be with so many other men). Could you question him as to what it is specifically that he resists about Aoibheann? Maybe if you undertand the root of his hesitation better, it will help you make your choice.

July 15, 2012 11:18 AM

is the idea of using Coibhlaith Aiobheean too much irish together for a first/middle combo? because i like it, though in the States, the prn. will have to be explained and the spelling, constantly. unless you are elsewhere, but with Sorcha, that is probably something you may contend with already and not mind. congrats, by the way.

By Guest (not verified)
July 16, 2012 12:41 AM

Thanks to both of you for your suggestions. First off, though, I have to apologize because I accidentally created this as a duplicate thread, so there's been a bit of a conversation going on already. 


Coll: when I could press him on the issue, he mostly objects to Aoibheann phonetic similarity to "even". So, according to him, a lifetime of "even steven" or "odds are even" awaits her. I personally think on the teasing meter that's pretty tame. More generally, he says he just doesn't like the sound - and it doesn't sound like a girl's name. With sorcha and cobhlaith, the feminine 'a' ending is implicitly there.

Danasurfside: alas, yes I think using both is an bit too gaeliphile even for me. And we also agreed that the first name could be bewildering irish, but that the middle would be more accessible. We also have a double barreled last name, so it gets to be a bit of a mouthful! We're in Canada, not the states, but as an irish political history prof, my circle is pretty on board with either name. At least it won't get mangled by my friends! 

Thanks for the support as well - the main reason I came back to this board was the wonderful people! 


By Guest (not verified)
July 23, 2012 1:33 AM

Unfortunately Coibhlaith Aiobheean is going to look like "Xjdfurusdfl; ASDFjl;erjfucx" to most Americans. =(