Woman horrified by pregnant sister naming baby after deceased child

Gillian Sisley

Are there ever names that are off-limits?

The loss of a child is an incomprehensible reality for many. But for others, this is something they unfortunately know too well, and have to live with every single day.

Understandably, the death of a child can cause devastating psychological struggles for the parents left behind. It is common for parents to suffer from depression, and at times may also require mental health support from professionals.

These realities were highlighted in a recent online post in which a new mom names her newborn after her sister’s deceased child, and it isn’t received the way she’d expected it would.

Are there ever names that are off-limits?

An online post published on September 30, reported on by Ashley Gale from Newsweek, has gone viral with 6,700 upvotes and 1,000 comments.

The author begins her post by tragically explaining that three years ago she gave birth to a baby girl, but after 19 hours the baby passed away. It was an incredibly devastating loss of the author, and she still struggles with it quite a bit, stating that she is ‘traumatized’. Due to this painful event, she and her partner broke up as well. They had named their daughter Coraline Iris.

Fast-forward to the present, and the author’s younger sister just gave birth. She didn’t tell anyone the planned name for the baby, which is fairly common for expectant parents today. She said she would let everyone know the name once it was ‘legal’.

The author didn’t think that this was anything out of the ordinary—that was until her sister made the ‘official announcement’ of the birth, stating that her newborn daughter was named ‘Iris Coraline’. The author was absolutely shocked by this, as her sister had taken the exact name of her deceased daughter and flipped it.

Is it nice or tacky to honor someone’s memory through their name?

The author goes on to explain that if her sister had only taken one of the two names, she wouldn’t have been upset, because she could understand how it would be an act of honoring the deceased child’s memory. But to have used the exact same name, and hiding it from the author the entire time, made the whole situation feel wrong.

She confronted her sister, demanding why she’d done what she did. The sister became offended, saying that she thought the names were beautiful, and so she ‘swapped the order’ so that her sister ‘wouldn’t be upset’. A large fight ensued, resulting in the author calling her sister ‘insensitive’. She notes that most of their family members are ‘uncomfortable’ with the name choice, but that they also think the author went too far by confronting her sister.

What do you think? Did the author indeed go too far by yelling at her sister so soon after giving birth? Or is the author absolutely within her right to be upset, especially as her sister chose this name behind the author’s back?

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