Woman Seeks Advice After Her 'Narcissistic' Mother Announces Her Baby's Name Before She Does

She feels manipulated by her mother.

mother and daughter sitting on couch actively ignoring each other Fizkes / Shutterstock

Choosing a baby name is no joke. The stress of one name for your child for the rest of their life … it’s definitely not a small task. When you finally land on that perfect name, though, nothing can beat that feeling.

Nearing the end of her pregnancy, one woman took to Reddit and admitted she basked in the joy of finding that perfect name. Growing up in the South, she revealed how she couldn’t help but joke with her mother about the possibility of her daughter getting a Southern nickname — turning Katherine into Katie Mae. When the laughs were over and the conversation passed, however, the soon-to-be mom was shocked when she opened up Instagram to see a post from her mother the next day. 


After joking about a nickname for her newborn, this ‘narcissistic’ mom posted it on social media without permission. 

In a Reddit post from the r/narcissists forum, a soon-to-be mother vented about going through her pregnancy with a "narcissistic" mother — not a task for the weak. After posting a celebrity Cameo to her Instagram commemorating her daughter’s pregnancy, the excited grandmother shared her daughter’s baby name with her entire following. 

“My mom wrote a post explaining the [Southern nickname] joke, but ended it with ‘it’s so funny how the Southern way took over and now she’ll forever be Katie Mae,'” she confessed. “All my mom’s friends and peers are commenting stuff like ‘so cute, Katie Mae!’ and ‘can’t wait to meet Katie Mae.'” 


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After she expressed her distaste and anger towards her mother’s post, the soon-to-be grandma was quick to deflect — naming herself as the victim for not understanding how much the post would hurt her daughter. Even this one interaction highlighted evidence of the woman's theory about her mom being a narcissist: two of the largest signs of narcissism are blaming others for their own behavior and needing to be the center of attention. 

Many people within the Reddit thread were quick to validate this woman’s experience — noting that she grew up being gaslit by her mother’s behavior. Regardless of whether or not a narcissistic parent actually has Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), the effects they leave on their relationships and children are significant.

Looking back on her pregnancy, she recalled her ‘narcissistic’ mother’s attention-seeking nature. 

Her mother’s "attention-seeking" behavior was far from new — she recalled instances throughout her pregnancy where her mother desperately tried to steal the spotlight


“When my husband and I announced the pregnancy, she used the pictures we posted.” she wrote. Adding, “she then wrote a whole post about becoming a grandmother — nothing about being happy for me and my husband.” 

While she’s spent a great deal of her life gaslighting herself into thinking her mother wasn’t really as selfish as she seems to be now, the pregnancy has only made it more difficult to ignore. 

A part of narcissism that is often overlooked among parents is their ability to use involvement as evidence of their "good parenting" — being the PTA President, designated carpool mom, or constant love-bomb poster on social media. For many parents with narcissistic tendencies, this increased involvement in their children’s lives is entirely self-serving. Their inability to give up control and step outside of the center of attention is what motivates their involvement in many areas of their children’s lives. 

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After years of dealing with her ‘narcissistic’ mother, the woman yearned to have something ‘of her own.’ 

The mom-to-be admitted that her mother's tendencies have “affected almost every aspect of [their] relationship and has only become more insidious with the pregnancy.” 

Like many children who grow up and out of toxic households, their yearning for control over their lives outweighs many other typical desires. While many moms at this stage of life are able to enjoy intimate conversations with their mothers and share celebratory moments, this woman was stuck enforcing boundaries and fighting for normalcy. 

“I just want ONE thing about this baby for myself and I feel like she’s stolen everything.” 



TikTok and other social media platforms provide space for people to share their experiences with toxic parents — like @dorkbait’s post above emphasizing her mother’s desire to live through her experiences. 


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Comments were empathetic, addressing the long-term consequences of a narcissistic parent. 

Competition, manipulation, and selfishness are all traits associated with narcissistic tendencies. While only six percent of the U.S. population has been diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), a much larger percentage of people tend towards similar tendencies. 

Reddit commenters were quick to acknowledge how those tendencies in a parent can breed a toxic environment for a child. Even after leaving the home, these tendencies can leave lasting effects on how their children view and interact with the world as adults. One user explained, “I’ve come to understand that the reason why ‘little’ transgressions by a narcissistic mother feel so big is that they are indicative of years of abuse and a lifetime of little things that are actually really big when you put them together.” 


Some mothers in the comments recalled their own pregnancy experiences with narcissistic parents — some went as far as suggesting she should stop telling her mother things altogether. “She doesn’t deserve to hear any of the ‘firsts.’ Before you know it, she’ll be using ‘little transgressions’ towards your own daughter and you’ll regret allowing her space in your life.” 

While it can be difficult to take a step back from your life, oftentimes toxicity is bred from the people closest to you — this Reddit post is proof of a community of people who’ve had to learn that the hard way. However this woman decides to engage with her mother in the future, she should make an effort to actively celebrate the joys of life with the people who are more than happy to give her the spotlight she deserves.

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Zayda Slabbekoorn is a news and entertainment writer at YourTango focusing on pop culture analysis and human interest stories. Catch up with them on Instagram or TikTok