A woman fears her son’s “phallic” surname will attract bullies, and wants to change it. However, her ex-husband refuses, declaring that he should “learn to wear it like a badge of pride”
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A mum has become concerned that her son’s unusual surname will attract torment, with the nine-year-old having already been subjected to bullying incidents because of it.
The name in question is Cox, the old English spelling of C***s, the same as his dad’s.
As the parents split up when their son was just 18 months old, and the dad has little to do with the child and hasn’t seen him in years, the mum didn’t think it would be a big deal to change the name.
The mother has told how she went on to remarry in 2019 and took her wife’s surname. She now wants her son to have the same name and broached the subject with the dad.
However, her ex point blank refused, stating that the youngster should just learn to wear his name “like a badge of pride”.
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Taking to Reddit, the mum said that she had tried to explain the issues they’d had with bullying during the conversation with her ex.
She also stressed how the surname had caused her and her wife various frustrating practical difficulties, for example, with systems bouncing the name back as a swear word.
The poster – who goes by the username u/Unlikely-Bunch2986 – wrote: “I approached my ex to ask if he’d be willing to let us change my son’s last name to ours, due to the above reasons.
“He declined, stating that ‘he shouldn’t have to deal with this disrespect’ and ‘it’s his right as a man to have offspring with his last name’.
“When I asked him, ‘Okay, but what about the bullying?’ his response was, ‘He should learn to wear it like a badge of pride and you’re damaging him by telling him it’s okay to have a different name.’
She continued: “He’s always been extremely prideful, bordering on narcissistic, but I need to do what’s best for my son. He keeps swearing up and down that this will be the downfall of their relationship, and it’ll be my fault.”
Her fellow Reddit users have reassured her that she is in no way at fault for this unfortunate situation, with some urging her to try and change her son’s surname regardless of his dad’s input.
One person wrote: “’Dad’ isn’t a dad at this point, he’s a DNA donor. Ask your son what he wants, and do that. Ex sounds like he’s looking for an excuse to permanently bail on your son. He sounds fairly worthless, so let him.”
Another advised: “Change the name because your son already feels disowned by his original father. It’s not a badge, it’s a reminder of how horrible his father is. Make your son feel included and enjoy his new family.”
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