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My stepdaughter found a loophole...

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
My stepdaughter tells me she considers me her other Mother, consider's herself my daughter (and her Mother's as well). My stepdaughter has also asked, for years, if she can call me Mom, Mommy, KrissyMommy, MommyKrissy, etc, and I am forced to tell her that I can't let her call me that (her Mother made sure that was in the custody/visitation papers). My stepdaughter is not even allowed to call me her Stepmother (it has the word "Mother" in it ) in front of her Mother- she must refer to me by name or as "Daddy's Wife". Anyways, my Katherine announced last night that, since she can't call me Mom or Mommy or any form of "Mother", even though she thinks of me as her second Mother, she will no longer be calling me Krissy. She says it doesn't feel right, it feels like she's calling me like a babysitter or one of her friend's Moms. She told me that she picked a nickname for her to call me and that's what she will refer to me from now on. My new name? Chrysanthemum. Pronounced, ChrysantheMOM! : And she says it's a flower name, so nobody (meaning her Mother) can complain, and I should think of a flower name for me to call her. : Anyone know a good flower name with a really cool meaning, maybe something that means, "Best daughter anyone could have ever asked for?"
post #2 of 33
How wonderful! (I am, however, flabbergasted that her own bio mother is such an insecure mom that she can't allow her daughter to develop her own relationship with, and name for, you).

My youngest's name is Iris. She's not just a flower name, she's also the goddess of the rainbow.

Just a flower-name thought.

Congrats on having such a great relationship with your DSD!!

love, penelope
post #3 of 33
What a beautiful thought and a perfect name!

There is a lovely children's book called "Chrysanthemum", do you know it?

There is also a Delphinium in the book.

I love the little-known book by the author of Anne of Green Gables, "Magic for Marigold." My grandmother named my mother `Marigold' after the girl in the book.

I've always loved the name Rosamund, which means "rose of the world". I could see calling a lovely girl variations of the name Rose as a nickname.
post #4 of 33
Thats cute!

But really strange that she cant even call you Stepmom.

I like the name Daisy... Just as like a nickname.
post #5 of 33
Cute! I have the book Chrysanthemum, although maybe you guys can write your own book (to be published the day she turns 18 and can call you whatever she wants!) :
post #6 of 33
How sweet. This brought tears to my eyes.
post #7 of 33
How about sunflower (because they are bright and happy) or blossom?

Also found this web link:
http://www.thinkbabynames.com/search/0/flower
post #8 of 33
What a sweet girl a beautiful, indomitable spirit!

I thought you might find these helpful or interesting-

http://www.proflowers.com/flowerguide/flowermeanings

http://www.aboutflowers.com/floral_b5.html

http://www.vietfun.com/flowers/
post #9 of 33
That is so wonderful! I've been on this board long enough to know your story, so I know how nice it must be for your dsd to want to acknowledge your very important presence in her life despite her mom's attempt to quash it. What a sweetie.
post #10 of 33
Thread Starter 
I read all your posts, but I haven't picked a nickname for her yet. Luckily, she's "giving me until Sunday, when she has to go back to her Mother's house" until I have to pick one. I'm still reeling- the kid is pure genius, and so sweet, as well! :
post #11 of 33
I don't want to sound mean, but is it fair to encourage her to use Chrysantemum to circumvent her mother's direct wishes? Anything spelled out in the custody order should be upheld on both sides, and by letting her "get around" her mother's rules, you are sending the dangerous message, that you are willing to go against her mom, that you are not a team.

Maybe you don't like the rule, and maybe your dsd doesn't either. But, if her mother and father agreed to it, then you should abide by it. For some moms, "Mom" is a sacred name.

I personally insisted that my dd not call her stepmother "mom." This was after I was asked by several people who knew my ex and his wife why I was "babysitting" D and G's little girl. I even had one snotty girl who babysits while my dd is at her dad's house tell me that her stepmom was as much her mother as I was. Which, considering my daughter is relegated to the role of "temporary" child, is just inacccurate.

Help your dsd find a nickname that doesn't have mum, or mom, or mommy in it. And ask yourself if you and your husband would be okay with calling dd's stepfather "Daddy?"

I have to agree, though, that you have one sweet, intelligent sd. Encourage and embrace that, but do it in a way that doesn't directly go against her mother's wishes. When she's older, she can tell her mom that she thinks of you as a mom, and that's the way she'd like to refer to you.
post #12 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by strangeduck View Post
I don't want to sound mean, but is it fair to encourage her to use Chrysantemum to circumvent her mother's direct wishes? Anything spelled out in the custody order should be upheld on both sides, and by letting her "get around" her mother's rules, you are sending the dangerous message, that you are willing to go against her mom, that you are not a team.

Maybe you don't like the rule, and maybe your dsd doesn't either. But, if her mother and father agreed to it, then you should abide by it. For some moms, "Mom" is a sacred name.

I personally insisted that my dd not call her stepmother "mom." This was after I was asked by several people who knew my ex and his wife why I was "babysitting" D and G's little girl. I even had one snotty girl who babysits while my dd is at her dad's house tell me that her stepmom was as much her mother as I was. Which, considering my daughter is relegated to the role of "temporary" child, is just inacccurate.

Help your dsd find a nickname that doesn't have mum, or mom, or mommy in it. And ask yourself if you and your husband would be okay with calling dd's stepfather "Daddy?"

I have to agree, though, that you have one sweet, intelligent sd. Encourage and embrace that, but do it in a way that doesn't directly go against her mother's wishes. When she's older, she can tell her mom that she thinks of you as a mom, and that's the way she'd like to refer to you.
I can understand how you would be bitter, given your own situation, but you still can't dictate the relationship of others, through the courts. They just are what they are and no amount of court custody agreements or rules will stop people from loving and nurturing one another. Personally, I find court custody orders with rules like this petty and controlling and not in the best interest of the child at all! Children should be free to call their care givers and family members what ever they feel is suitable. A mother that would try to control every aspect of a child's relationship with her father and his new spouse in this manner, doesn't deserve special consideration and gives the word mother, a bad rap. Get over yourself- you don't own your child's emotions.
post #13 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASusan View Post
How sweet. This brought tears to my eyes.
Me too!
post #14 of 33
[I don't want to sound mean, but is it fair to encourage her to use Chrysantemum to circumvent her mother's direct wishes? Anything spelled out in the custody order should be upheld on both sides, and by letting her "get around" her mother's rules, you are sending the dangerous message, that you are willing to go against her mom, that you are not a team.

Maybe you don't like the rule, and maybe your dsd doesn't either. But, if her mother and father agreed to it, then you should abide by it. For some moms, "Mom" is a sacred name.

I personally insisted that my dd not call her stepmother "mom." This was after I was asked by several people who knew my ex and his wife why I was "babysitting" D and G's little girl. I even had one snotty girl who babysits while my dd is at her dad's house tell me that her stepmom was as much her mother as I was. Which, considering my daughter is relegated to the role of "temporary" child, is just inacccurate.

Help your dsd find a nickname that doesn't have mum, or mom, or mommy in it. And ask yourself if you and your husband would be okay with calling dd's stepfather "Daddy?"]

But the point isn't what the parents are comfortable with but what is best for the kids. If this girl genuinely wants a name for her stepmother that connotes a parental relationship (I'm taken that as a given here though I obviously don't know) then she should be allowed it. And the mom saying you can't even call her stepmom is crazy. I also am queasy at the idea of going around the mom b/c it puts the child in the middle but if it's what the girl wants, then I think that should be respected. I might want to consider mediation to work through some of these questions precisely so the kid doesn't get put in the middle.

I think it's worth considering that for some kids, titles like mom or dad or some variation thereof connote security and trust - the idea that an adult will always love and be there for them no matter what. As opposed to a teacher or other caring adult who passes through the kids life. For a kid who's been through the upheaval of divorce I think to deny them that is really hurtful. We tell our kids that a parent can't love another child more or less than them but that love expands. And yet somehow we send the message that if they love a step-parent that that lessens the love for the parent. It's totally contradictory and makes no sense. I think we do best by our kids when we tell them that love is expandable and infinite and that we support them in all the relationships in their lives and are happy for them when they are lucky enough to have more than 2 people willing to make the committment of parenting to them. Personally, I haven't had to deal with this so I know my feelings might be hurt if my daughter called another woman mom; but I would hope that I would be genuinely happy for my daughter that she had another woman willing to play that role in her life. Her loving someone else does not make her love me less. When we adults allow ourseles to fall into those emotional insecurities, then how do we teach our kids to be secure in the love of others.

Okay, rambling now, but this is a push-button topic for me. Btw, I don't think kids have to call their step-parents mom or dad (my daughter doesn't call my partner dad) and they absolutely should not be forced too; but if it's what they want then I don't think anyone should stop them.
post #15 of 33
SO HAPPY FOR YOU !!!!

Yet I do feel sorry for a mother who sounds so insecure as your step daughters mother does. Writing in the custody agreement that she and no one else is to be called Mother? Very insecure woman ..
post #16 of 33
I think it's great and sweet. A child should be allowed to express affection in any shape or form they feel the need to express it. We, the adults, should be teaching our kids to express more love, not less. And it is up to us to conquer our insecurities, just my humble opinion.

I'm glad your stepdaughter had enough strength of character "to find the loophole". Having every endearing nickname to be approved by someone is NOT healthy. And I'm glad for you both that you can maintain this level of closeness despite others trying to prevent it.

If a child feels that you are her second mom, then you ARE her second mom. (not first one, not biological, not as important as real mom, but yes, you ARE her second mom). Someone else can tell her it's not true, and it's not right, but a child feels what she feels, and the sooner her feelings are acknowledged, the sooner the poor kid can stop balancing between adult insecurities... Good for you.
post #17 of 33
i guess i just dont see the issue here. i think that mom sounds really insecure. thats too bad. we use "dada (insert name)" here...it makes everyone feel like they are on teh same page. i see nothing wrong with it. but thats just me.
post #18 of 33
To be clear, I'm not saying that you and your sd shouldn't have a mother/daughter relationship and that she shouldn't love you and respect you and that you shouldn't feel like she's your own daughter. I think that it's awesome that you love your sd that much, and frankly I wish my daughter had a stepmom who loved and cherished her as much as you clearly do your sd.

What I was saying was that by the two of you doing something sneakily behind her biomom's back sends your sd the wrong message. Yes, her biomom needs to get over her insecurity and be grateful for your loving influence in your sd's life, but going against the agreed upon conditions in the custody order is hardly the best way to do that. You don't want to send the impression that your sd's biomom is "wrong" and that you are right.
post #19 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strangeduck View Post
What I was saying was that by the two of you doing something sneakily behind her biomom's back sends your sd the wrong message. Yes, her biomom needs to get over her insecurity and be grateful for your loving influence in your sd's life, but going against the agreed upon conditions in the custody order is hardly the best way to do that. You don't want to send the impression that your sd's biomom is "wrong" and that you are right.
I also play games with my stepdaughter, help her pick which outfits she wants to buy and dress in, help her with her hair or painting her nails, help her with her homework, read with her, spend time with her without her Dad, tuck her in at night and talk about "girl things". I also tell her I love her and tell her that I am her family and that my family is her family as well. All of this is "against" her Mother. How would denying my stepdaughter all this, when she repeatedly asks me to make her "mine" as well as her Mother's and her Dad's, how would that send my stepdaughter the "right message"? And what is the "right" message? That her Mother is to have complete control of her every move, every word, every thought? That she's "wrong" to want something special with me, her Stepmom, because her Mother decided something before she even knew I exsisted? At a certain point, I realized that all these rejections of my stepdaughter, all the time I spend "correcting" her when she told someone she was my daughter or that I was her Mother, was hurting her, was suggesting to her that I don't love her as my own child, that she is not as important to me as my own son is, that I don't consider her "my" family, because her Mother has ruled against it. I respect that my stepdaughter's Mother is her Mother, but I will NEVER put my stepdaughter's Mother's needs (or wants, or whims) over my stepdaughter's needs. I am responsible for my stepdaughter's emotional wellbeing, not her Mother's. Her Mother is a big girl now. My stepdaughter is still an innocent child caught in the middle.
post #20 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bronxmom View Post
I also am queasy at the idea of going around the mom b/c it puts the child in the middle but if it's what the girl wants, then I think that should be respected.
I read that, and I am also feeling a bit... awkward... "letting" my stepdaughter find a loophole, but it's been pushed so much (by my stepdaughter), that I feel like, it I keep agreeing how her Mother's wishes are all that matters, despite how my stepdaughter feels about me, despite how I feel about my stepdaughter, I will emotionally lose my stepdaughter- she will close off. I cannot, will not, let my stepdaughter's Mother destroy our relationship with eachother. My stepdaughter means too much to me.
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