Name Toe Stepping — The Bump
Pregnant after 35

Name Toe Stepping

We've added Thomas Paine to our list. We were thinking of famous pirates and patriotic last names...my last name is a misspelled military term. Thomas Paine fits both. We want to go the hospital with 3 or 4 and see what suits him best. Thomas is also my father's name. 

The biggest problem I see is with my sister. My nephew died when he was 3.5 months old. SIDS. His name was Thomas Jeremy (TJ) Should I talk to her and make sure using Thomas is OK? May is bad month for us. My nephew was born May 9. His first birthday would have been Mother's Day. My cousin delivered last Mother's Day, and he died a few hours later. I'm due May 25, but could deliver anytime after May 4.

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Re: Name Toe Stepping

  • I would talk to her... especially if you're close.  She might see it as honoring her Thomas or stepping on his memory - the only way to know is to gently bring it up.  However, if you bring it up be prepared to scratch it off your list if she is really opposed.  If you're not willing to do that, I would not bring it up, kwim? 
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  • My 1st thought would be not to, but I'd talk to her about it.
  • What about Thomas as a middle name?  I don't know, unless you are absolutely dead set on the name (which it doesn't sound like because you have 3 other options), I would probably pick something else as a first name unless it has been a sufficiently long time since the passing of your nephew.  Even then, I can't imagine how hard it would be for your sister to hear stories about your Thomas' growth and see another small baby within your family with the same name as her child that died.  And I say this as someone who generally doesn't really think names are "off-limits" but this seems to be the best case if any for picking another one.  

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  • Her Thomas was TJ. Not Tommy or Thom or Thomas. She was OK with Thomas H S III.  She and I aren't super close. Too far apart in age 22/34(35). Definitely part of it is to honor all the Thomas' in our life: My grandfather, my father and my nephew. 

    I think I'll talk to her. She stole my name for her next son! Matthew Riley, granted, I thought I was DONE with kids, lol. Matthew for our uncle. He's Methodist minister and performed the memorial for TJ.  

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  • image cookiemdough:

    What about Thomas as a middle name?  I don't know, unless you are absolutely dead set on the name (which it doesn't sound like because you have 3 other options), I would probably pick something else as a first name unless it has been a sufficiently long time since the passing of your nephew.  Even then, I can't imagine how hard it would be for your sister to hear stories about your Thomas' growth and see another small baby within your family with the same name as her child that died.  And I say this as someone who generally doesn't really think names are "off-limits" but this seems to be the best case if any for picking another one.  

    I agree with PP. Loss of a child seems to be one of the biggest - if not biggest - reason to stay away from a name. If you're even going to consider it as a final contender, I think you really need to talk to her first but at any hint that it would upset her (she may say it's okay but I think your gut will tell you if she really means that or not), I would not touch the name Thomas. Also, she may have called him TJ, but my guess is that in her heart whenever she hears the name Thomas, she thinks of her son. I know I would.

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  • image aeh72:
    I agree with PP. Loss of a child seems to be one of the biggest - if not biggest - reason to stay away from a name. If you're even going to consider it as a final contender, I think you really need to talk to her first but at any hint that it would upset her (she may say it's okay but I think your gut will tell you if she really means that or not), I would not touch the name Thomas. Also, she may have called him TJ, but my guess is that in her heart whenever she hears the name Thomas, she thinks of her son. I know I would.

    I woke up this morning and decided against it. Such a sweet baby. I don't want anything to shadow his memory. I put a stocking up for him this year, and caught my mom and sister off guard. They said it had never occurred to them to that. I said, "Gone, but not forgotten."

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  • sounds like you have already made your decision, but I will throw in my 2 cents anyway.  the year after my daughter maggie died, close friends of the family asked if they could name their daughter maggie in memory of my daughter.  I said sure, mostly because i didnt really think about it at the time (i was living in my own world).  I enjoy it now.  whenever I see pictures of her, or hear stories about "their Maggie" it makes my happy, which suprises me still.  I now am glad they asked and glad I said yes, but I think that is a very personal decision and can really vary from person to person...Every one deals with grief differently and has their own opinions and feelings.  If you love the name, definitely talk to the family (you may want to consider the whole family as it may impact more than just TJ's mom) You arent neccessarily shadowing his memory, you may be honoring it.  But  If the name wasnt that important to you, then yah, scratch it off the list.
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