Navigating the delicate territory of suggesting names for a grandchild can be challenging for new grandparents.
While it’s natural to have preferences, there’s a fine line between making polite suggestions and being imposing.
One man on Reddit found himself grappling with this issue as his mother became a “mother-in-law from hell” to his wife during their pregnancy. Despite setting boundaries, he questioned whether he went too far in making his opinions known…
A pushy grandmother-to-be
The 25-year-old man took to Reddit’s ‘Am I The A*****e‘ thread to share the unfolding situation, explaining the challenges faced by him and his 25-year-old wife, Kenzie, who were expecting their first child.
He explained that this child would be his parents‘ first grandchild, which he said started causing “some craziness” from his mother – and that most of this was aimed at Kenzie. In his post, he wrote that it was the first time he was able to see just how pushy his mother could actually be…
“This started right after our pregnancy announcement. My mom went to Kenzie and told her we should name our child Rodger if we had a boy and Elizabeth if we have a girl. Rodger was my mom’s grandfather and she wanted to name me or one of my brothers Rodger but dad vetoed the name every time,” he said.
However, the Redditor’s mom became increasingly persistent, despite Kenzie informing her that the couple was not really looking for baby name suggestions and had already a few in mind. Choosing to ignore the wishes of her son and his wife, the mother apparently told Kenzie that the names “were important and should be used.” Yikes…
“A couple of weeks after the first incident my mom asked Kenzie if she knew whether baby Rodger or baby Elizabeth was joining the family. Kenzie told her neither of those names were in the running and we didn’t know yet,” the man continued, adding: “Kenzie mentioned mom bringing up the names to me then but downplayed how pushy she was being so I said nothing at that point.”
The situation intensifies
The situation eventually reached a tipping point when the couple learned they were expecting a boy, and the mother took it upon herself to order baby items embroidered with the name Rodger.
“The first we knew of this is when she gave us a little door decoration with the name Rodger on it. I told my mom then that we hadn’t finalized a name yet and wouldn’t be announcing it until after he’s here anyway,” the man explained.
Though, the future grandmother sadly didn’t choose to stop there. In fact, she then took the liberty of posting about the embroidered clothing and baby items on social media, which naturally created a false impression that the name ‘Rodger’ had been decided on by the expectant couple.
It was at this point that the man says he “lost it” and went to confront his mother directly, who said it was important that the couple take her opinions on board, given that she was to be one of the baby’s grandparents.
In response, the man firmly stated that his mother “had zero rights to name our baby and her opinion wasn’t wanted or important here.” He then wrote: “My mom told me it was rude to dismiss her opinion and her feelings as unimportant and I should have more respect for her.”
However, reflecting on this confrontation, the Redditor wondered if he had gone too far when telling his mother how he felt. While acknowledging the need for space from his mother’s overbearing behavior, he questioned the appropriateness of his response. The situation highlighted the complexities that can arise when extended family members become involved in the naming decisions of a new baby, prompting a need for clear boundaries and respectful communication.
What the internet had to say
One person wrote: “You should’ve put a stop on this long ago. First time she was pushy you should’ve told one more time and you personally veto the names like your father did.”
They continued: “Go to the social media posts or make your own referencing hers and tell everyone that your baby won’t be named either of those things,” before adding: “Instead of building resentment, you should shut your mom down.”
Another comment read: “Your wife should block her and all communication should go through you from now on. It’s not fair to make her deal with all this, especially while pregnant/ becoming a new parent.”
What do you think? Would you have done the same if you were in this situation? Let us know in the comments!