Baby Boy Sepas, Brother to Evelyn

Hey Swistle!

I’m a long time reader, and I love, love, love baby names. So I can’t believe I’m writing to you for advice. I’m 30 weeks pregnant with our second – a boy – and I just can’t commit to a name. My name is Bridgett, my husband is Evan, and our last name is Sepas, but with a silent T in the front, and pronounced See-pahs.

We have a two year old daughter named Evelyn Claire, and her name is perfect. I told my husband while we were dating that I was having a daughter named Evelyn one day, so the day we found out she was a girl she was named. We gave her the middle name Claire because it means “light” and after years of infertility and miscarriage, she was definitely a light at the end of a dark time in our lives. Her name fits her perfectly, and hearing her say “Yevelyn” just melts my heart.

We’re due with a boy in mid January and I thought we had found the perfect name, but something won’t let me commit. The two names on our list right now are:

-Rowan Lawrence (Rowan is my favorite boy name, and Lawrence, after my beloved Grandpa that passed away)

-Luke Thomas

On paper, Luke Thomas is the perfect name for us. Why?

-My dad’s name is Luke.
-My father in law was Thomas.
-This is the first grandson born since my father-in-law passed away. (We won’t use Thomas as a first name because we already have a nephew named Thomas.)
-Luke also means “light”, just like his sister.
-Thomas is my husband’s middle name.

I think the reason I can’t get completely on board is because it’s a one syllable name. I’m so used to saying “Evelyn” 1000 times a day, and saying Luke just doesn’t have the same flow. It almost feels “blah” to me. But am I crazy? Am I not committing to the perfect name for us because of something as silly as the syllables?

I know I’m probably a little extra anxious, because our daughter was named at 18 weeks, and also because our daughter was born at 31 weeks, so if that happened with this pregnancy, I have approximately 5 days to name this baby boy!

Other names we have had on our list:


I would love to hear what you and your readers think. And to get an unbiased opinion. I don’t feel like I can ask any family members because they both include family names, and that’s awkward when you go with something different.

Thanks for considering helping me!



Luke Thomas is the perfect name, but I can see how it could feel too short, especially with “Yevelyn” ringing adorably in your ears. Would it help to have the option of calling him “Luke Thomas,” so you’d have three syllables like you do with Evelyn? I do love a good double name. You wouldn’t have to call him that every time, but it gives you something longer for when you want it. There’s also the nickname L.T. And there are endearments such as Baby Luke, Lukey-Pie, Lukey-Lu, Lukey-my-Lovey, and so forth.

I don’t know if it is true for you as it is for me, but I do find boy names more blah. All of my boys have names I really, really like, but it is only my daughter’s name that DELIGHTS me. There just WEREN’T any boy names that gave me that same feeling. I had to change my goals: for girls I looked for names that delighted me, and for boys I looked for names that gave me a strong warm feeling of happy satisfaction.

I also do love Nolan from your list, but I find I feel sad to lose the Dad Namesake. One of my kids is named after my dad, and it has given me more long-term happy satisfaction than I expected—and I expected quite a bit of long-term happy satisfaction. On the other hand, another of my kids is named after a character on a TV show, and that too has given me quite a bit of long-term happy satisfaction, so I don’t feel inclined to put too much pressure on you.

20 thoughts on “Baby Boy Sepas, Brother to Evelyn

  1. Sargjo

    I’m assuming you’ve already thought of Lucas, Luca, Lucien, etc and that those don’t work as given names for you since they’re less of a direct honor. However, you *could* choose one as an elegant nickname. Rather than going shorter, you’d go longer. And then as life evolved he might go by Luke in high school bor something but his baby name would be Luca…

    I really really like Rowan Lawrence though. That’s a hard name to give up! You could do Roshan which means light in Persian to reconnect the name to your family.

    My last idea would be Aaron-it means bringer of light and has that two syllable ends-in-n sweet spot that makes boys’ names so delightful and also ties to Evelyn. Aaron and Evelyn, Ari and Evie.

  2. Annie

    I think you can’t go wrong with the names already on your list – they are both solid family names, sound pleasant, and go reasonably well with your daughter’s name.

    I second Swistle’s recommendation to call him “Luke Thomas”! I know a baby named Luke Thomas who is called both first and middle, and it is darling! Even if, as he grows up, he starts to go by just Luke, you still have the family significance and a name you like (if you really do like the name in itself). The cuteness factor will become less important as he grows up, I assume, and then he’s got a good, solid name after his grandfathers.

  3. Kim C

    Mmmmmmm. This is a tricky one, both of your name choices are great, with some significant family connections thrown in too.

    Your favourite boy name is Rowan, won’t you be disappointed if you don’t get to use it? Have you considered two middle names?

    Rowan Luke Thomas

    What about Rowan Thomas in honour of your father in law who has recently passed away? Are you planning on having more children, providing an opportunity for other family names to be used in the future?

    The name Lucan could be used as a longer form of Luke, he’ll more than likely get Luke as a nickname at some point, but at least the longer option is there.

    Nolan and Lawson are my favorites from the other names on your list. What about Ronan, Damon or Logan?

    Wishing you all the best!

  4. TheFirstA

    Oh, I do really want you to use Luke Thomas. The family connections, meaning connection to your daughter’s name. It really does seem like the perfect name on paper. I think Luke Thomas is fine for a double barrel first, which would then open you up for a 3rd (middle) name if you wanted. Maybe playing around with that will help you feel warmer towards Luke Thomas?

    Since Thomas already has a namesake, my other suggestion would be to move Luke to the middle (which better mirrors your daughter’s name) and then find something else for the first. Rowan Luke, Lawrence Luke, etc. From your list, my favorite is actually Nolan Luke. The repeated L sounds give it such a lovely, fun to say flow.

    Or what about using your FIL’s middle name since his first has already been used (twice). Or use your husband’s first name as a middle, which carries on the tradition of dad’s first becomes son’s middle. It’s a nice nod to the relationship between your husband & his father and I think it’s fair to say it’s still honoring them both, especially since Thomas has already been used as an honor name more than once.

  5. Jd

    Both my boys are have family names, and I was not completely in love with their names when they were born. But they were the options I thought we would be happiest with. The family connection has made me love their names more over time. But it was hard to commit for sure.
    I really like Luke Thomas as a double first name – really masculine but lots of syllables. The Thomas part takes the cowboy vibe down a bit and turns up the classic.

    1. Laura

      I want to ditto this so hard. I have a boy with a name I didn’t really love, but named for a man I did really love, and now I also love my son’s name, because I say it a million times a day.

      1. Maree

        Me too, soooo much.

        Also, you have used your declared favourite already so I feel it is ok to defer to an honour name from your partner’s side this time.

        In my house a baby named Luke would become Lukey or Lucky Luke or Luke-o or similar so no worries about syllables. Two of my sins have one syllable names and it is a non issue.

  6. borealis

    What I’m hearing is that you don’t love Luke, as a name, in itself and that you do love Rowan. I wonder if you’re feeling as if you *should* want to name him Luke, but don’t, or as if you *should* want to name him Rowan because you love it, but you actually want to honor your father more than you want to use a name you love. Either one feels possible from your letter, but I’m leaning towards the first. And…I don’t think there’s a should here. You gave Evelyn a name you love for itself and your choice there was all about the name and the meaning and you and her and that moment in your lives. With this baby, its sounding like you’re feeling a lot of pressure to make the name about other people, about your father and your father in law and even about Evelyn—and of course you love them all and if that’s what you want then that’s lovely, but if it’s not what you want then it doesn’t have to be.

    There is nothing silly about not wanting to use a name that feels blah to you. There is nothing silly about wanting a name with more syllables. If those things matter to you, then they get to matter. You don’t need an unbiased opinion; both names are lovely and biased opinion is the only thing that matters between them. You just need to pick which of your biases to prioritize.

    When you imagine using each of them, do they both give you equal thrills of happiness? Is the decision too fraught for either of them to feel good to think about any more? Does one make you feel *guilty* to imagine taking off the table (I’d say that’s a reason to take it off the table—if you find you really really miss it afterwards, not out of guilt but out of wanting, then that’s important information—if not, then you have your answer). Is there one that makes you feel more sad when you imagine *not* getting to use it? Is there one that it would feel like a relief to let go of? If none of those things clarify, how anxious would it make you to wait until you met him—are you the kind of person for whom decisions like this tend to come clear at some point or the kind of person who just has to actively make a choice and the clarity comes later?

    The only thing that can make either of these choices *wrong* is how it makes you or your husband feel. Lean into your preferences, whatever they are: they are all you’ve got.

  7. Anne

    I love Luke Thomas! I think it’s a lovely name, but maybe wait until the baby is here to name him. We were torn between 2 names for my daughter and I found it easier to name her once I saw her face. Both are lovely and either way you can’t go wrong!

  8. Steph Lovelady

    I pretty much agree with everything Swistle said about Luke Thomas, but I keep coming back to the fact that you said Rowan was your favorite boy name. That counts for a lot in my book.

  9. Kerry

    I think you should teach your daughter to say “Luke” or “Baby Luke” and see if that melts you heart. (Possibly not in the context of talking about her baby brother though, in case you’re trying to keep the name a secret.)

    1. FE

      This is great advice! It’s how I went from knowing my son’s name was right and therefore agreeing to it … to Knowing it was right and loving it. When I heard my then 2yo daughter coming to my room to meet her brother for the first time and saying “Baby —-” and owning it, it did melt my heart. Our reasons for choosing his name were not too dissimilar from yours and it’s special to explain to him where it came from and why we used it. He’s 9 now, and even though it’s probably still not a name I’d expect to have on MY list, I’ve absolutely no regrets!

  10. Phancymama

    What about Lawrence Thomas? Honoring your granddad and your husband/FIL? Lawrence and Evelyn sounds lovely. Or would your husband want to use his first name as the middle? If you aren’t finding a boy name that makes your heart leap, is there a boy name that makes your husband’s heart leap? That might make it special enough to me.
    If you pretended you weren’t going to use any family names, and the job was now to look for all other names, would that feel like a weight was lifted?
    Good luck!

  11. Jean C.

    It does feel like Luke Thomas and Evelyn Claire are siblings. But I think the most important thing to remind yourself is that you are not obligated to use a family name, and you are not obligated to use your longtime favorite because you did with Evelyn. You don’t even have to use either name (it strikes me that Peter would be lovely with Evelyn!).
    Echoing a similar sentiment others have expressed: when I had decided on a family name (Gloria) for my daughter that I knew was the right name for her but I didn’t love immediately, it changed all of my feelings about the name when I heard my 3 year old niece call her “baby Gloria.” I swooned. It confirmed that this could in fact be an adorable, perfect name for a baby. And now I love her name so much. It fills me with joy when I see or hear it.

  12. Elizabeth

    Just had to say how much I resonated with your comment, Swistle, about how you are happily satisfied with your sons’ names but DELIGHTED with your daughter’s. Same story here.

  13. Jamie

    I love Luke Thomas! It sounds perfect and the meanings couldn’t be better. I have a 3 year old Erica and a new baby boy Brett, so I definitely understand about saying her 3 syllable name over and over… but I wanted a shorter name for my second to prevent having another longer-feeling name that I’ll have to repeat constantly when he’s older! So I actually see that as a positive :) I personally love a solid & strong one syllable name for a boy paired with a longer girl’s name.

  14. Elisabeth

    I quite like Evelyn and Luke as sib names.
    We had kind of the same situation in reverse with our kids. Our son had been named for 15 years before we had him (also had fertility issues). But our daughter was a different story. We too had had a favorite girl’s name for 15 years, but Mom died and naming her after Mom became really important. i had second thoughts about 6-7 months along, too, but in the end we went with Mom’s name and we have no regrets 18 months later. your mileage may vary, of course


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