Dear Bruce: What is “birth announcement letdown” and what causes it?

Dear Bruce,

What is “birth announcement letdown” and what causes it?

Bruce: Birth announcement letdown is a term I coined to describe what you feel when the name you’ve selected produces disappointing feedback when you announce it to friends and relatives or to people you’ve just met. You’re in big trouble if people groan or say, “You’ve got to be kidding.” You’ve made a strange choice if people ask, “What?” or “Come again?” You know people are being polite if they remark, “Oh… that’s a nice name.” And you know the name you’ve chosen may one day irritate your child if (after receiving a printed birth announcement) people ask you, “How do you pronounce that?” or if (after being told the name of your baby) they ask you, “Is it a boy or a girl?” or “How do you spell that?” Imagining how people may respond to your child’s birth announcement should motivate you to do your homework to avoid making a disappointing choice.

If you’d like to submit a question, please leave it in the comments section here.  

© 2013 Bruce Lansky
All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without proper notice of copyright.

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