Adult Contemporary

Here’s why AJ McLean’s daughter changed her name from Ava to Elliott

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AJ and daughter Elliott (Ava) circa 2018 — Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images

AJ McLean’s 9-year-old daughter has decided to change her name from Ava to Elliott.

The Backstreet Boys singer’s wife, Rochelle McLean, took to her Instagram Stories Wednesday and explained why, clarifying that it was “not a gender thing.”

“‘Ava’ has changed her name quite a few times since she was about five,” she wrote. “Last year she asked us to start calling her Elliott and it stuck. She wanted something unique that no one else had. (There are so many Ava’s.)”

“I didn’t really see the harm in respecting her desire to be unique,” Rochelle added. “Come to think of it, it’s a little odd that as parents we choose names for people we haven’t even met yet and expect them to forever [identify] as that person! Anyway… so that’s how Ava became Elliott.”

She requested that people “be kind” to her daughter. “She’s just a kid trying to make her way in this crazy world!” she wrote. “I just want her to know she can always be whoever she wants to be.”

AJ and Rochelle first shared their daughter’s chosen name in a back-to-school post this week. They are also parents to 5-year-old daughter Lyric.

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