Woman dumbfounded after pregnant friend reveals she wants to name her baby after STD

Stock image of a woman staring at her phone in confusion, slapping her head in shock
The pregnant woman's friend tried to correct her, but it didn't go well. Photo credit: Getty Images

As a childless 24-year-old with no intention of opening for business any time soon, I'm probably the wrong person to ask for advice on baby names. What I can tell you, however, is that never, ever should you settle on an obscure forename without Googling it first

Without the wonders of the internet, how else would the following mum-to-be discover she had planned to name her newborn after a sexually transmitted disease?

Taking to the popular Reddit forum 'Am I the Asshole' - a space for people to seek advice from the strangers of the internet on their pressing moral conundrums - a woman said that a friend of hers had planned to christen her child after a character in Greek mythology

The woman, sharing her story anonymously, explained that her friend, who is five months pregnant, had always been passionate about the genre of folklore, a body of myths originally told by the ancient Greeks. 

However, it appeared the mum-to-be's memory had not served her well, with the pregnant woman confusing an ancient Greek character with, well, an ancient Greek word for a sexually transmitted infection.

"So my friend… [is] having a girl and likes to run some of her ideas by our friend group to see what we think," the woman wrote.

"Yesterday we all got together to hang out and she told us her latest favourite. Chlamydia. 

"Before I had time to get over my shock, she started going on about how ever since we had to read The Odyssey in high school, she's always liked her in Greek mythology. It takes a minute but from the context she gives in the conversation, I figure out that she's talking about Clytemnestra.

"So I interrupt her and go, 'Wait, you mean Clytemnestra not Chlamydia. Right?' And she's all, 'No, I meant Chlamydia'."

For context, 'chlamydia' is derived from the ancient Greek word for 'cloak'. Meanwhile, the character Clytemnestra was the wife of Agamemnon, king of Mycenae, and the sister of Helen of Troy in Greek mythology. In Aeschylus' Oresteia, she murders Agamemnon. However, in Homer's Odyssey - the ancient Greek poem the mum-to-be had been referring to - Clytemnestra's role in Agamemnon's death is unclear.

Continuing to explain her conundrum, the woman said once she realised her friend meant Clytemnestra, not Chlamydia, she was quick to correct her. 

"I have to explain to her that she's got the name mixed up and that chlamydia is an STD, not a figure from Greek mythology. After I bring up a Google search to prove my point, she gets all awkward and quiet. The mood for the rest of our time together kinda soured."

According to the woman, the mum-to-be proceeded to send her a long text following their exchange, telling her she was a "bad friend" and had "embarrassed" her in front of the group.

"She says I could have brought it up in private and didn't need to be so condescending about it. She [said she] was just talking about a name she liked and I made her feel like an idiot.

"I ignored the text 'cause she was kind of being an idiot… A simple Google search before getting so attached to the name would have solved the problem before there was one."

Despite dismissing her objections, the woman subsequently received texts from their other friends, asking her to apologise for upsetting their pregnant pal.  

"I don't think I have anything to apologise for, and besides, they were perfectly happy to sit there and let her think her STD baby name would be a good choice. Imagine how embarrassed she would have been after she found the mistake later and realised that none of her friends had the decency to tell her the truth," the woman argued, before posing the all important question.

"I feel like I'm the only one on my side, so am I really the [asshole] here?"

The vast majority of the subreddit's dedicated readers concluded that no, the woman was not the asshole - and she had done the right thing to correct her friend. 

"If she's old enough to be pregnant, she should be old enough to know what chlamydia is. She embarrassed herself," one reader stated.

"Exactly. The friend has pregnancy brain and got the names mixed up. OP [original poster] did what was necessary and her other friends should feel awful about not having said something. Like they seriously gonna let this baby be named after an STD," another seconded.

"My friend, an [obstetrician-gynaecologist], had a patient who wanted to name her kid Chlamydia. My friend explained to her very clearly what that is and the patient's response was, 'that's a doctor's word, no one knows what that means anyway'. My friend grabbed the [patient's] sister and let her know what was going on which caused hell, but that baby got a non-STD name," a third shared.

"Clytemnestra is a pretty tragic figure too as far as Greek mythology goes. I wouldn't saddle a kid with that name," a fourth weighed in.

In an update to her post, the woman admitted she could see her friend's point of view and she may have embarrassed her with her blunt response - but readers reassured her that her friend was the one who should've handled the situation better. 

"I think this would happen to me but I would’ve laughed it off because of how ridiculous it is and thanked my friend for pointing it out."

It's not the first time a mum-to-be has almost inadvertently named her newborn after a medical term. Last month, a woman took to the same forum to ask if she would be an asshole for informing her pregnant colleague that her name of choice, Mackoneum, is simply an alternative spelling of the word meconium - in other words, a baby's first poo.