Choosing a name for a new person coming into this world is an intimate experience.
Parents want to choose a name that will fit and properly represent a person for life.
But how does one name a person one has never met?
Over the last few generations, it feels like parents have been playing fast and loose creatively with baby names.
Some are welcomed, and some are… questionable?
This is why a lot of people are unable to hold their tongue when the topic comes up.
Case in point…
Redditor nfjs74839 wanted to discuss his experience and get some feedback. So naturally, he came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.
“AITA for not keeping my thoughts on my sister’s ridiculous baby names (Stanford and Yale) to myself?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I’m the youngest of three siblings.”
“There’s me (34 M[ale]), my sister Katie (35 F[emale]), and my brother Ian (38 M).”
“Out of the three of us, Katie is the one who ‘made it’ (her words).”
“She attended Yale law school and is engaged to a neurosurgeon (Daniel) who attended Stanford medical school.”
“Over the years, it’s become clear that Katie looks down on me and Ian because we aren’t as ambitious/successful/credentialed as she is.”
“Katie has expressed her astonishment that the family business is profitable even though someone who got C’s in high school and never went to college (aka me) has been running the day-to-day operations for 10+ years.”
“Katie also once told Ian to his face that he ‘wasted his potential’ (context: Ian was the valedictorian of his high school class, just like Katie) by dropping out of college to help Mom run the family business after Dad passed away.”
“Katie and Daniel recently posted that Katie is pregnant with twin boys, and their names would be Stanford and Yale.”
“I commented ‘Congratulations!’ but later I texted her to say that it wasn’t right to give the boys ridiculous names that would put them under immense pressure to succeed from a very young age.”
“I also asked her about what would happen if one or both of them weren’t as successful/perfect as she hoped.”
“Kate didn’t like the points that I made.”
“She texted back ‘I wasn’t asking for opinions, especially from someone like you. Consider yourself uninvited from our wedding until you sincerely apologize.'”
“To be honest, I was already leaning towards not attending due to Katie’s condescending attitude towards me, but the ‘someone like you’ comment sealed the deal.'”
“I told Ian what happened, but he said that I should’ve kept my thoughts to myself.”
Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.
“NTA. Parents should be steered away from giving their children highly bully-able names.” ~ plfntoo
“Yeah, definitely NTA.”
“My mom wanted to name me after a popular Disney princess and we even have the last name to match.”
“I would have looked like an a** trying to use an ID or credit card with that name.”
“Or Winifred because ya know, the Wonder Years was popular.”
“I ended up with a relatively common name and thank god for that.”
“Though the Disney princess would have been funny/ironic considering I forced her to give me a bowl cut (I hated my long hair) and wouldn’t leave the house for a year unless I could wear my Ghostbusters coveralls.”
“Eventually they got fed up and forced me to burn them.” ~ Gcs-15
“In my lifetime I have known 1 Stanford (whom we called Stan), 2 Yales, 3 Princetons, and 1 Cornell.”
“Asians like to name their kids after prestigious schools, I guess?”
“None went to the college they were named after (actually, one did get into Princeton).”
“And none were bullied for their names.”
“Although as twins, it seems a little much.” ~ Even-Emu5483
“If that were me, I’d purposely go to Cornell, Brown, or Harvard.”
“Or maybe a small private college like Saint Mary’s (California) or a state University (maybe Cal Poly).”
“This is just cruel to the kids and setting them on a course of resentment.”
“Also, this is some sort of badge to everyone who asks: why did you name them that?”
“Oh, well, that’s where hubby and I went to college, thereby rubbing their education credentials in everyone’s faces all the time.”
“OP, NTA but his sister and hubby sure all for lots of reasons stated by OP.” ~WhizGidget
“This lady and her husband sound like name-dropping pretentious a**holes.”
“I’m sure the main reason for naming their kids that is so every time they introduce their kids to people they can say, ‘This is Stanford and Yale! You know, since my husband went to Stanford and I went to Yale and we have such fond memories.'” ~ Capital-Afternoon-22
“NTA. Your sister sounds absolutely insufferable and conveniently forgets that the family business that she looks down on as less than provided a roof over her head, and food on her plate as she was growing up.”
“Start a lotto as to when her kids go N[o] C[ontact].” ~ paisley_life
“Not only that, but she sounds like the type of mom that will treat her kids as if they have some sort of moral failing if they end up having a learning disability (or any disability) and can’t keep up with her expectations.” ~ SailorSunBear
“NTA. You brought this up in private (the way such things should be, especially when first broaching a subject like this), and, frankly, someone needs to tell her that kids are meant to be their own people.”
“She’s about to give birth to two trophies to her career accomplishments, and I feel very, very bad for the kids.”
“Given her attitude, I’m not surprised this didn’t change anything, but good on you for trying.” ~ Prime-Number-52021
“NTA. I don’t care if/where/when my kids go to college.”
“I have a Ph.D. and several other degrees. The partner is in a very advanced scientific field.”
“You were brave to speak up for your nephews.”
“Children deserve to be individuals and not be pressured to outperform or follow their parent’s endeavors.”
“The only reason I would give for trying to rekindle the relationship is to be a positive influence on your nephews, but that may be asking a lot of you, and they may not be receptive under their parents’ influence.” ~ jgalol
“If the kids had already been born, I would say that you should keep your thoughts on the names to yourself.”
“But, being pregnant myself, I understand that telling people the names you’ve picked out means that people are going to give their opinions.”
“Family ESPECIALLY because they will feel more free to share their opinions in most cases.”
“NTA. Those names really are awful.”
“I do agree that it would have been better to keep your thoughts to yourself, but I doubt you’re the only person who couldn’t help themselves.”
“Plus, why does she care about the opinion of ‘someone like you’ anyway?”
“I feel bad for those kids.” ~ lightningbug24
“As someone who has worked in schools with the current generation of kids, OP is absolutely NTA.”
“Kids can be so mean, and missing several years of ‘normalcy’ and regular socialization has made it worse.”
“Even if they weren’t outrageously bad names (Really? Naming them after Ivy leagues? I can get past like, the Breydons and Ainsleighs, but after colleges?), those two kids are going to get bullied so bad by classmates, other peers their age, and likely feel so much resentment to their parents.”
“Especially if they DON’T get into ivy league schools, which is a very likely possibility.”
“OP’s sister sounds like a real piece of work and I hope she re-evaluates her mindset before having her kids.” ~ trogladyte_colony
“NTA, not for your sister’s attitude towards your family, but for you to protect these kids.”
“Calling kids by school names is ridiculous.”
“If she wants to give them ‘educated’ names, she has so many possibilities – first names of savants, first names using etymology.”
“Calling kids ‘Yale’ and ‘Stanford’ sounds really pretentious.” ~ Booky_Cat
“I guess this is where we talk about emotional IQ and social savvy.”
“Your sister might be smart but true wealth and status whispers.”
“She’s your family’s, Donald Trump.”
“I’d be okay with the disinvite.”
“Make sure she doesn’t get 1/3 of the business.”
“You and your brother should have 1/3 now with your mom’s 1/3 divided between you siblings.”
“Make plans now for an eventual forced buyout. NTA.” ~ Ipso-Pacto-Facto
“NTA. Let me see if I’ve got this straight… your brother left college to help run the family business, you have been running the business for 10+ years, and your sister has the nerve to look down on both of you for working instead of going to an Ivy League school?”
“What were you supposed to do, close the business?”
“Let your mom struggle to run it alone? Sell it?”
“And on top of that, giving her kids names that are pretentious at best and targets for bullying at worst?”
“You owe her nothing. I wouldn’t even send a card.” ~ littlelostangeles
“NTA for two reasons in my book…”
“1. You are her brother and therefore you care about her unborn babies and…”
“2. Your comments were based on being worried they’d be put under too much pressure, not because you simply didn’t like the names.”
“I think your concern about these two particular names is logical.”
“All of the credentials in the world can’t buy you common sense.”
“Be glad you’re a ‘person like you’ and not a person like her.” ~ HabitualEnthusiast
“Wait, she was pregnant before getting married?”
“I know we don’t shame women for getting pregnant out of wedlock these days, but given her condescending attitude I’d definitely be petty enough to question her health education and the validity of her husband’s medical degree (but I’m an AH).”
“You, however, are NTA.” ~ BatGalaxy42
Well, OP, Reddit is with you.
You voiced an opinion
It sounds like your sister has never had a problem doing that herself.
And it’s your sister’s wedding. She gets to invite and disinvite whoever she wants.
A little time to cool off, and maybe this will blow over.
Good luck. We applaud you for advocating for your newest family members, though.