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Dad-To-Be Offended After Pregnant Wife Suggests Naming Baby After Her Late Ex-Boyfriend

Dad holding baby
Olena Domanytska/GettyInages

Naming a baby is one of the most important decisions for an expectant couple, and brainstorming can be part of the fun.

For one couple, it was anything but when a name suggestion became a point of contention.

After a heated discussion, the individual who caused the drama sought judgment on the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

There, Redditorbigtasty774 asked:

“AITA for suggesting we name our baby after my ex/dead friend?”

The original poster (OP) explained:

“My husband (30 M[ale]) and I (28 F[female]) are pregnant and thinking of baby names for our son due later this year. We’ve got a good list of names we love, but we’re still undecided.”

“The other night I was up late with a bought of insomnia, thinking about when our baby is going to be a kid and what he’ll be like, and I remembered my childhood best friend, Lucas.”

“We were best friends from 5 until 15, when he passed away. About a month before he died, we started ‘dating’, as in we held hands in the hall at school and kissed a handful of times. My husband knows about him as I have fond memories with him and he’s in a lot of my childhood photos.”

“He has never shown any disdain to me talking about Lucas. I also do not harbor any leftover romantic feelings for Lucas. I loved him, but we were not in love, just kids doing what kids do. He was my best friend and I miss him, but he is dead.”

The OP continued:

“Lucas is a pretty timeless name with multiple variations, as well as a way to honor my childhood best friend, especially since he doesn’t have any siblings who could name their children after him.”

“Plus, a lot of my and my husbands first name ideas have multiple syllables, so I thought a short middle name like Luke would help balance it out.”

“I suggested it and my husband hit the roof. He said me wanting to name our baby after an ex-boyfriend was gross and insulting to him as the father. He said if the baby should be named after anyone, it should be him.”

“I told him I wasn’t trying to be insulting and it was just an idea, not a name I was set on and him vetoing it was completely fine. I also said it wasn’t naming our baby after an ex, but an old friend. He’s still angry, though, and is demanding I apologize for disrespecting him as the father.”

“I refused to apologize because the suggestion wasn’t a way to disrespect him. It had nothing to do with him at all, it was just a way to pay homage to my friend. He said he’s not interested in brainstorming ideas anymore and has been giving me the cold shoulder ever since. AITA?”

Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

Many Redditors were divided and judged accordingly.

“Lordy lord that is such a stretch it’s laughable. Less than 1% of people who were childhood sweethearts make as adult couples.”

“OP is NTA she thought of a name while thinking of a late friend fondly. She actually apologized to her husband when he got upset and plans to apologize again. While I understand her husband having hurt feelings his reaction as described is disproportionate to what had occurred.”

“He needs to apologize for overreacting, not his feelings but his reaction to the suggestion of Luke for a middle name. Yelling and refusal to talk to your wife over an innocent name suggestion is a punishment that doesn’t fit the crime.” – Cmkevnick6392

“They held hands a few times before he suddenly died AT FIFTEEN.”

“What she remembers and cares about is the memories of a dear friend from her childhood and thought about honoring him. Honestly, we cannot respect the pasts of people we loved and other people we loved how can we really ever have healthy relationships.” – angel9_writes

“No judgement. When naming a baby it’s best to agree to keep all the names of exes, even the innocuous ones, off the table because inevitably it leads to an argument.”

“My husband wanted to name our son Jeffrey. I reminded him I had two exes named Jeff and they were both jagweeds. He’d forgotten and started to laugh and we picked another name.” – Peony-Pony


“He’s not an ex, he’s a friend who passed away. I think it’s perfectly fine in this case, but the husband doesn’t so it’s vetoed.” – floydfan

Some Redditors sided with the husband.

“Yta how do people not know that naming your baby after any of your ex’s no matter the duration of the relationship is just a terrible idea. Its setting up for the baby daddy to think you would prefer that man to be the dad.”

“It may be an irrational thought from your perspective but how would you feel if he wanted to name your daughter after his ex.”

“I’m not trying to be harsh I just don’t think you thought this through.” – Wifevsofficewife

“Come on you knew this wasn’t going to be ok with him….or anyone really. Nobody wants their baby to be named after their partners ex. Doesn’t matter if you were 15, an ex is an ex to your partner. YTA for suggesting this.” – ChickenScratchCoffee

The OP interjected with:

“I didn’t realize he thought of Lucas as an ex as he’s never given any indication. He readily talks about Lucas whenever he’s brought up and we also have a photo of us as kids displayed in our home.”

“There was never been a hint of an issue until now. And honestly, yeah, the thought of me rather having a baby with a dead child over my husband is irrational.”

Redditors continued weighing in.

“This mentality though is just so juvenile though. Semi related story – my childhood male best friend was coming up to my house a few weeks ago with another mutual friend just to hang out. We have known each other for over 20 years and yes dated briefly while we were kids, 20 goddamn years ago.”

“I am married and have been with my husband for a total of over 10 years. Friend’s current girlfriend got upset that he was going to his ‘ex-girlfriend’s house’. Like I mean you’re not technically wrong, but we were literally 13 years old. Is this really something that needs worrying about? Grow up, Peter Pan.” – PilsbandyDoughboy


“Now you know this whole time you’ve ever mentioned Lucas, he didn’t care because he’s dead but he absolutely saw him more as a boyfriend than a longstanding friend. You are viewing it as ‘my friend Lucas who I grew up with and loved so much’ and less about the dating part.”

“His reaction was over the top. Also really weird to be this upset about a childhood friend that is dead. Like he’s not competition. It’s not like it was the one that got away and you settled for your husband. Geez.” – archetyping101

“I agree – there was no malice or ill intent! I think she owes a GENTLE apology because she obviously hurt hubbies feelings but a gentle one combined with explanation that she didn’t see Lucas as an ex in the true sense. She’s certainly not an AH for making a suggestion.” – ececacademic

“NTA your husband is of course allowed to say no and you acknowledge that in your post. The anger is what gets to me. You were literally children and this was 15 years ago.”

“Why did this suggestion make him so angry? He seems insecure. I’m also strongly against giving the cold shoulder in a marriage. You can take time to calm down and then talk it through, but refusing to speak to the partner you’ve chosen to spend your life with is incredibly immature and hurtful.” – WifeofBath1984

After reading the comments, the OP provided the following update:

“ETA: I will be apologizing to my husband, a lot of people pointed out that whether I meant to offend him or not, his feelings were hurt and I do want to try and remedy that. I’m also going to try and have a conversation about how he feels about Lucas moving forward.”

“I now see a lot of people are getting caught by the ex part, as my husband is. I assumed it was clear that I do not still have feelings for Lucas. I do not wish I was having a baby with him instead.”

“He was not a childhood crush. As an adult, I know that we were pairing off because that’s what everyone else our age was doing and he was my very best friend, so why not? When he died, I mourned the death of a friend, not an ex lover.”

“I am also not trying to force this name on our baby. It was merely a suggestion because I thought it was sweet and it fit what we were looking for in names. If my husband says no, it’s a no. I don’t know why people thought I would do otherwise.”

Overall, the judgments were all over the place with mostly Redditors thinking the husband may have reacted dramatically while others thought the OP should’ve been more sensitive to his initial response objecting to the suggested name.

Hopefully, the OP’s apology goes over well and the pair can work together to come up with a baby name that will please them both.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo