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Guy Balks When Woman He’s Dating Wants To Introduce Him By Middle Name To Family Due To Her Ex

Person wearing a 'Hello, My Name Is' name tag
Rick Gayle Studio/Getty Images

We can all agree that names are important, and the names given to those that we love carry a significant importance in our lives.

When a relationship ends or a loved one passes away, it can be hard to be confronted with that name again in the future, reasoned the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit, at least for a while.

Redditor ToledoBandito was in the early stages of seeing a woman who was irked when she found out that he had the same name as her ex-husband.

But when she demanded that he go by a different name in public and around her loved ones, so that she wouldn’t have to think about her ex-husband, the Original Poster (OP) questioned how this relationship could possibly work.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for telling a girl I won’t introduce myself by a different name because I share the same name as her ex-husband?”

The OP’s girlfriend was offended that he had the same name as her ex-husband.

“I’ve been talking to a girl I matched with on a dating app for almost two months now. We’ve gone on a few dates, talked a lot throughout the week, have a lot in common, etc.”

“But my name happens to be the same as her ex-husband.”

“She didn’t know it until a few days after we started talking because my name on my profile is just my initials.”

“Ever since she found out, she has incessantly made comments and sly remarks about how much she hates my first name.”

The OP tried to compromise with her to make her more comfortable.

“She wants to call me by my middle name. I hate being called by my middle name, but I tried to be understanding and tell her she could give me a nickname or call me by my initials.”

“She didn’t like that option. Then she proceeded to ask me if I’d be willing to introduce myself to her friends and family, or if we go out and I’d book a table, under my nickname or a name other than my own.”

“I told her that I’d be fine with her calling me something different if that would make her more comfortable, but I was not going to stop going by my name just because it makes her uncomfortable.”

“I told her it was unrealistic and that it’s concerning that she lets his name have that much weight on her decisions (she doesn’t want to date or talk to anyone with his name).”

“She said she skips or swipes left on anyone with our name (even though it’s an extremely common name).”

“Now she’s upset, acting like she should’ve just cut me off when she found out my real name.”

The OP was perplexed.

“I can’t be the a**hole, right?”

“I feel like I was trying to be pretty accommodating allowing her to call me out of name, but I’m not gonna allow someone else to dictate what I call myself, especially if it’s my actual name. Like, I’d get it if I went by ‘P Diddy’ or something, but I’ve had the same name for over 20 years.”

“I just wanted to make sure I’m not crazy. I felt like I was being more than reasonable. I’m definitely not willing to let anyone be that controlling.”

“She acted like I wasn’t being considerate of her feelings and that’s never been my strong suit. I just wanted some other opinions.”


Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some insisted that the OP had already been considerate enough.

“You were considerate of her feelings when you offered to let her call you a nickname or your initials. She was inconsiderate of your feelings when she said she wanted you to introduce yourself to others by that name. NTA.” – iamonewiththecheese

“Generally speaking, it’s important to be considerate of your partner’s feelings, even if you don’t understand them initially. However, your partner needs to be equally considerate of your feelings.”

“This girl definitely isn’t considering your feelings. You’ve offered her compromises others wouldn’t in your situation, but she doesn’t care. To put it nicely, she’s being completely absurd.” – DragonCelica

“Having a name she doesn’t like isn’t a flaw or a slight, it’s a compatibility issue. You can’t make her happy without changing who you are. That doesn’t mean you’re inconsiderate of her feelings, it means you’re simply not compatible with her criteria for a partner.”

“It’s fine for her to have boundaries and deal breakers, but they’re only supposed to dictate her own actions, not anyone else’s. So if your preferred name is a deal breaker for her, that means she needs to break it off with you, not demand you change your identity for her. You’re not crazy, her expectations are just out of line!”

“It sounds like she’s trying to make you out to be the bad guy so she can avoid acknowledging her issues, instead of doing the responsible thing and breaking it off herself.” – pocketfullofdragons

“NTA, but she has some serious issues. If her ex has so much power over her and she holds this much resentment towards him, I would stay away from her.”

“Your name is part of who you are and her requirements are impossible and to be honest embarrassing. If my boyfriend wouldn’t like people to know my name, he would not be part of my life for that long.”

“She needs some alone time before she starts to date again.” – Simple-Plankton4436

“NTA, she has some weird issues, and you need to leave. She is effectively wanting to take away who YOU are, the name you’ve been known by for over 20 years, because of an ex who she was with probably for only a few? That’s bonkers.”

“If you stay with her, understand that you’ll be living with a new name/nickname/unwanted name. Just say no. If she can’t accept it, then there is your answer for how this relationship is going to pan out.” – Own-Kangaroo6931

Others agreed and were worried about how this situation could escalate.

“The worst part is, this is not even super controlling yet. Just wait until you have a hobby he also had that she wants you to stop, or a mannerism, or a friend she doesn’t like, or how he always argued with her when she went out with a particular friend and disappeared all night.”

“She’ll constantly compare you to him and use that technique to make you think you’re the unreasonable one.”

“Best case scenario, she’s got baggage, isn’t ready for a relationship, and could use therapy. Worst case scenario, she’s some sort of manipulator or narcissist. Either way, this behavior, this early, is a red flag.” – TuringTestFailedBot

“Just going into a relationship with her, I’d be concerned that she has some intense and bizarre feelings regarding her ex. What if she transferred those feelings onto me after a few months of dating? The behavior doesn’t exactly scream ‘stable person.'”

“Honestly, I think I’d just block her and move on. Maybe send one last, ‘That will not be happening,’ message and gauge the response first. Then just put it down to a bad match.” – ich_bin_keine_banane

“NTA. She clearly has issues that she needs to sort out before getting into a new relationship. If her ex’s name is causing her so much distress that she wants a person with the same name to change their name, that’s an unrealistic expectation of other humans.”

“She needs to make an effort to get some therapy. I really hope she does because life’s to short to live with such trauma, but this isn’t something for you to fix. You did nothing wrong and you have every right to keep using your name.”

“The OP said, ‘I told her it was unrealistic and that it’s concerning that she lets his name have that much weight on her decisions.’ You were 100% correct in saying so.”

“I was in a pretty terrible relationship a while ago, and hearing the name at first did make me sad, but I went to therapy (not so much for the name) it was mentioned in order to move on to learn to associate places that we went to together with new positive memories. I did the same with the name.”

“It’s just not possible to go on living expecting everyone to tiptoe around something like her personal dislike of a common name. If that’s how she’s reacting to this, I’m sure there’s other things that will happen in the future where she may do the same.”

“It’s not a healthy mindset and her desire to not do anything and her expectation for everyone else to make all the effort says a lot. I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this.” – TheMelodicPanda

“For everyone saying she has an issue, yeah, I agree, but also… if the genders were reversed, people would rightfully point out that this is how abuse often starts: demanding their partner change things about themselves to be more to their liking.”

“This is pretty sinister. If you let her cajole you into accommodating her on such a frivolous request at the cost of effectively changing who you are… that shows her that she can push you around and make you bend.”

“She is showing you who she is. It isn’t pretty. Run!” – annewmoon

“NTA. She should’ve cut you off when she found out your real name. It’s clearly a dealbreaker for her. Do yourself a favor: Be happy with your name and do what she didn’t.” – jedirieb

Not only did the subReddit not think that the OP was in the wrong for not wanting to change his name for his almost-girlfriend, they also demanded that he flee before he entered a full relationship with this woman.

No matter how kind she might be about other things, it was clear the OP’s partner was not ready to date. Until she could be exposed to her ex-husband’s name without adding such negative connotations to it, she shouldn’t have a partner, let alone demand that they change such vital things about themselves to make her feel better. That’s not love.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan has been a part of the George Takei family since 2019 when she wrote some of her favorite early pieces: Sesame Street introducing its first character who lived in foster care and Bruce Willis delivering a not-so-Die-Hard opening pitch at a Phillies game. She's gone on to write nearly 3,000 viral and trending stories for George Takei, Comic Sands, Percolately, and ÜberFacts. With an unstoppable love for the written word, she's also an avid reader, poet, and indie novelist.