We all know that picking a name for a child is deeply personal and while we all would love our friends and family to love the moniker we choose, it doesn’t always happen that way.

A few weeks ago we shared the story of a mum devastated by her grandmother’s reaction to her baby’s name. And now, a woman has shared how she really doesn’t like the name her brother picked out for his newborn and can’t decide whether she should say something or keep silent.

I’m Worried For My Niece

The woman wrote a post on Mumsnet venting her concerns for her baby niece’s name:

“My brother has chosen Gretel for his daughter…Is this an okay name? I am worried that she will be asked ‘Is your brother Hansel?’ all her life.”

Keep Your Mouth Shut!

But she probably regretted sharing her opinion after seeing the flurry of defensive responses, pretty much ripping the poor woman apart for daring to express her opinion.

Most of the commenters said that they actually loved the name and the child is not hers so it’s really none of her business.

“Why on earth are you worried? It’s not your baby. The name is fine,” said one.

“I think it’s a lovely name, very underused and classic.”

Love The Name!

“Your brother’s choice, not yours. Gretel is a perfectly fine name, unusual but nothing wrong with it,” said another.

“The name is not your hill to die on,” read another comment.

“Um yes, she will get a bit of that and it’s twee… but it’s up to them isn’t it. There are worse names.”

Another responded similarly:
“Our son has a unique name from a known duo. Whenever anyone mentions the other half I just laugh. It’s a lovely name. Also, it’s not your child.”

Even a teacher weighed in: “Have taught two Gretels over a long teaching career. Nice name. Hardly any kids know the H&G story these days. Never got mentioned with the two I knew.”

What would you do if you didn’t like the name a family member or friend had picked for their child? Would you say something or just keep silent? Tell us in the comments below.

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  • I wouldn’t say anything about it.
    I think it’s nasty when people do.
    It’s your child so your can name it whatever you want!


  • Gretel is a nice name. Kids these days are much kinder about names and are used to a wide variety of names, I wouldn’t be worried about Gretel being picked on. I never criticise another persons name choice. It’s entirely their decision


  • Gretel does bring Hansel to mind, but one would think people are more tactful than that! We had planned on Logan Scott for our son and knew he would have to say “yes, my parents are x-men fans but no I wasn’t named for the characters”. We changed the name for a completely different reason.


  • People can get so defensive especially when they have way too much time on their hands


  • Each to their own choice. Their baby, their choice. The name isn’t that bad.


  • Don’t worry about it!


  • It’s not your child so don’t worry about it. There are a lot of names out there which I think are very unusual and it wouldn’t be my choice but there’s nothing I can do about it. I think Gretel is a lovely name and so much better than a lot of others. If I was you I wouldn’t say anything or you may lose your brother and not get to see your niece


  • I think it is up to the parents and no one else should interfere with a negative opinion on a babys name.


  • Don’t forget the famous Gretel Killeen (author, tv personality). Regardless of the name, the parents would have agonised over it and some one will always not like it


  • I will be silent. It’s their choice.


  • That’s not that bad- I’ve heard worse and there’s even a celebrity with the same name. It’s not really anyone’s place to say they hate the name or you should change it.


  • No, I wouldn’t say anything – not my opinion, choice or business!


  • I work in a primary school and believe me this is not an unusual name and really it is none of your business. Hansel and Gretel is not a common story so I doubt that she will be teased.


  • I think its nice that she has concerns for her niece, however, all things considering it really is not a bad name – there are worse for sure.


  • Um not your business what a family member (or anyone) calls their child. Appreciate you might comment at home, within your close circle, but you don’t get to raise it with them. Gretel Killeen?! What’s wrong with Gretel? As Aussies, we always find a nick name or pet name. Wow! I’m rambling. I think I’m shocked that this is an issue or even a discussion.


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