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Mom-To-Be Stunned After MIL Insists On Using Her First Name As The Baby’s Middle Name

Mom cuddling with her baby
Courtney Hale/Getty Images

We’ve all heard horror stories about toxic in-laws, mothers-in-law competing for their son’s affections, and just general, ongoing family feuds.

People who are blessed with not being mixed up in one of these toxic family environments likely do not understand how difficult the dynamic is to navigate, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITAH) subReddit.

Redditor badab1ngb00m had received a lot of support from her side of the family throughout her pregnancy, with little to no word from her mother-in-law. When her mother-in-law started reaching out just two weeks before her baby was born, she was certain her mother-in-law wanted something.

When her mother-in-law confirmed her suspicions by making demands about her future grandchild, the Original Poster (OP) felt the need to stop her in her tracks, even if her husband was not totally ready to shut his mother’s behavior down.

She asked the sub:

“AITAH for not wanting to let my mother-in-law (MIL) give my baby her middle name?”

The OP knew her mother-in-law wanted something when she reached out.

“My partner and I are having our first baby, which will be the first grandbaby on both my side and his side.”

“We’ve been together for over a decade and I’ve never had any issues with my Mother-in-Law (MIL).”

“She never checked in on me during my entire pregnancy (my due date is literally next week) UNTIL two weeks ago when she texted both of us in a group chat, asking how I was doing.”

“Then she slipped in a question of if she could give our baby her middle name and make the baby’s middle name her name.”

“My immediate reaction was H**L NO. Considering she hasn’t really been involved with the baby and pregnancy so far, it mostly p**sed me off and I thought it was just overall strange for her to even ask that of us.”

The OP didn’t feel the need to “honor” her mother-in-law in this way.

“My side of the family has been spoiling the crap out of the baby already by constantly checking in, getting gifts, and everyone has been super supportive and excited for the baby to arrive. That’s especially true of my mom, who has gone above and beyond to help us get ready for the baby.”

“I know of course the relationship with my mom vs. his mom is not comparable, but if we were to give the baby a middle name after anyone, I feel it should be my mom based solely on how much love and support she’s shown us and how much she’s already done for the baby.”

The OP was frustrated when her husband didn’t agree with her.

“My partner doesn’t really care what the middle name is but obviously wants to please his mom and doesn’t want to p**s me off, either.”

“He suggested a middle name that includes both sides so that the baby has a piece of both sides, which I agreed to.”

“But the more I think about it, the more resentment I have because I just can’t see past the fact that his mom hasn’t done anything for the baby this entire time.”

“Am I just being entitled?”


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 felt the OP’s mother-in-law either had control issues or was seeking attention.

“I’d suggest if MIL wants to name someone after herself, she can adopt a cat or dog. Then she can have something that is hers because letting her be part of the baby’s name is going to make her feel like she has some sort of control or ownership.” – MartinisnMurder

“NTA. Just say you’ve already chosen your baby’s full name and she’ll find out when the baby is born. And then name your child whatever you want.”

“It was pretty nervy for her to ask. It would be nervy of anyone to ask regardless of what they have or haven’t done for your baby.” – ilp456

“What kind of person ASKS to have their grandchild named after them? So much ick! Also: Naming rights belong ONLY to the parents!” – Martha90815

“My father-in-law kept hinting that he wanted us to name the baby after him. Then he started calling the baby I was pregnant with His Name, Jr., and talking about how the baby was ‘25% him.'”

“Ewwwwww. It sounds like my father-in-law and your mother-in-law would get along just fine. NTA, OP.” – babypossumchrist

“My mother-in-law who has also been as uninvolved as possible asked me to give our baby her middle name, and we’re having a boy. Then she started trying to request another baby after this one (who isn’t the fist) to name after her…”

“Oh, and she’s been asking my husband and I to support one of her other children, who is older than us and in their 40s. When we decline, she gets mad and tries to use, ‘I’ll deduct it from your future inheritance,’ like that’s a threat.”

“Don’t let this woman pressure you into anything you don’t want to do, especially, ESPECIALLY if you don’t feel like she’s a part of your support network. And if you feel like she only comes out of the woodwork when you wants something from you (like… the name of your CHILD), then she definitely doesn’t count as a member of your support network. Ignore her.” – Sleepy-Blonde

“You’re due in two weeks. Say, ‘My apologies for not sharing as we haven’t heard from you in quite some time. Baby is due in two weeks, we have already chosen the perfect name.’ And nothing else.”

“I guess be thankful you haven’t heard from her in 38 weeks, haha. NTA.” – Outside_Holiday_9997

Others agreed and gave tips on how to honor both families.


“Is the baby going to have Dad’s last name? If so, my suggestion is to say, ‘Appreciate your input, but we have decided we’ll give the baby his last name to honor his family, a middle name that honors mine and we picked the first name together.'”

“Just because it is the accepted norm doesn’t mean the surname doesn’t count.” – grey-canary

“My husband and I picked our daughter’s name together. She took the same middle name that me and my mother have. And then I gave her his last name. It worked beautifully and we were both very happy with the results.” – Gooey_Cookie_Girl

“My grandmother always complained, apparently, but when she was pregnant, her mother-in-law was pressuring her to name the baby Cedric. ‘I’ve always wanted to have a baby named Cedric,’ she supposedly said. And my grandma always complained, ‘She had five boys, she had plenty of chances to name a kid Cedric.'”

“If your mother-in-law wants a baby with her name, she can have another baby and name it herself.” – TootsNYC

“You know, lol (laughing out loud), this reminds me of something my mom told me about when my older brother was born. My dad’s sister told Mom that she should name him Luther, after my grandfather. Mom didn’t want to name him Luther and told her so.”

“But the funny part is, her son, my cousin Jammie, was born BEFORE my brother, so if she wanted a child named after Grandpa, why didn’t SHE name her kid that?”

“Some people are so into telling other people what to name and how to treat their kids.” – hoosiergirl1962

“NTA. Tell your husband you have thought it over and don’t want to give the baby a name from either side. If your MIL wants a baby with her name, she can have another one and name it.” – Lazuli_Rose

“NTA. Choosing your baby’s name is one of the most personal decisions you’ll make. Everyone else’s opinions, even if they’re family, are secondary.”

“Surnames are carrying on lineage enough, and first and middle names should be a joyful consensus between you and your partner.”

“Remember, this child will carry that name for a lifetime; make it something you both truly love. Stay firm, and best wishes for a happy naming!” – Ill-Mousse-3898

“NTA. You and your husband should agree on whatever name you want.”

“You don’t get to decide and neither does he. You BOTH should agree.”

“Anybody else’s input is just background noise.”

“Also, being a Jr myself, I absolutely wish parents would give their children their own names unattached to any family member.” – BlueGreen_1956

“NTA. This is your baby. She has a chance to name her kid(s). This is your turn.”

“You made this baby and grew the baby for all this time. You get to choose the name.”

“I bet she will even call the baby by whatever middle name she chooses and not the baby’s first name for some stupid reason like, ‘This suits the baby better.’ Nope! She can deal. This is your kid.”

“Your husband better get used to telling his mom, no, because that is part of becoming a parent, too!” – Viperbunny

While the subReddit could understand the mother-in-law now wanting to be involved, they did not feel that anyone besides the baby’s parents had any right to speak on their name, especially if they weren’t really a part of the baby’s support network.

Appearing two weeks before the due date and making demands doesn’t really count.

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.