My father-in-law is furious I refused to carry on his family’s baby name tradition’

When it comes to baby names, it can be difficult to please everyone with your choice – so it’s probably best to just pick something you like and not worry so much about what everyone else thinks.

However, one mum-to-be claims to have found herself in a spot of hot water with her father-in-law over what she plans to call her child.

The unnamed mum, 29, has taken to Reddit to share the issue and ask for some much-needed advice.

In her post on r/AmITheA**hole forum, the woman explains that she and her husband Shay are expecting their first child and it’s going to be a boy.

In her husband’s family, they have a naming tradition, in which all of the firstborn sons are named Shay and they of course all have the same surname.

However, the woman and her husband don’t want to name their son Shay – and it’s causing big problems.

Using fake surnames, she explained: “Am I the a**hole for not listening to my father-in-law about my baby’s name?

“For some background, my own parents hyphenated their names when they got married and passed it down to me and my two brothers.

“My mom was Smith and my dad was Clark, so my last name is Smith-Clark. Shay only has one last name, Johnson.

“We decided, before we got married, that I would keep my name, and in the event of kids, they’d be So-and-so Smith-Clark, cause I’m attached to my name, and he liked the idea of the kids inheriting it.

“I’d like to stress that the kids using my name was his idea. Plus, adding his name in would be weird. Smith-Clark-Johnson is kind of a mouthful.”

She continued to say that they decided they wanted to name their child Connor Smith-Clark, as they liked it and they announced the name to their family a few weeks ago, but Shay’s father wasn’t happy that they weren’t using his surname.

“He called us after he saw the announcement. Connor Smith-Clark does not work for him.

“Shay’s family has named every firstborn son Shay for years. I knew about this, cause he’s got cousins and an uncle named Shay, but I did ask my husband while we were looking at names, and he said it wasn’t a big deal, and he knows I don’t like the idea of my kid being a Jr.

“For the same reason, my father-in-law was not cool with using my name. They’ve had every firstborn kid named Shay Johnson, and he was hurt I was ‘disrespecting their traditions’.

“My FIL is usually a very nice, easygoing guy. He gets along great with me and my side of the family. I was kind of shocked he’d get so defensive about this. Like, I get it’s a tradition, but it’s a weird hill to die on, y’know?”

The pregnant woman added that her husband took her side in the argument and told his dad that their family could survive a generation without the name.

He went on to point out that his sister had just gotten married and was likely to continue the tradition when she had kids, but it did little to appease his father.

“His dad wouldn’t hear any of it. He’s been refusing to speak to us.

“My sister-in-law suggested we use Shay as a middle name, but the middle name we picked out already is honouring a deceased friend of ours, and neither of us wants to change it.

“I do feel bad somewhat, cause it’s clearly important to his family, and we could save Connor for if we have another boy in the future. AITA for sticking to my guns here?”

Hundreds of people have responded to the post, with many taking the woman’s side.

One person said: “Your partner isn’t attached to the tradition so there is no reason for you to change the name. Your kid, your rules. His family traditions aren’t the law.

“It sounds like keeping FIL happy would make you unhappy, and it’s not worth the sacrifice. Plenty of other family members are keeping the tradition alive. He’ll live.”

Another replied: “It’s incredibly sexist to expect a couple to comply to the MALE traditions. You have a family and your own traditions as well, and they are not less important than the traditions of the Johnson family.

“Good on your husband for not pushing this on you, and to do what is best for them, not what the men in his family dictate. Connor sounds like a lovely name. NTA.”

A third added: “Imagine any family events: ‘Honey come meet Shay Johnson, Shay Johnson II, Shay Johnson Jr, Shay Johnson Sr, Shay Johnson III and Shay Johnson.

“That is weird as f**k Don’t be afraid to give your kid his own identity. Jeez I get there are some weird family traditions but this would just be confusing. NTA.”