Suggestions on what the kid/s should call us? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 30 Old 06-05-2013, 07:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know most people on the forum are women, but I imagine some of you will have some suggestions so I'm going to ask anyways...

 

Does anyone have suggestions on either gender neutral terms or alternatives to 'dad'? My partner and I are both transgender, and this is something we haven't really had any luck finding a good solution to. We're probably just going to both go by 'dad', but we're keeping an eye out for a solution that works better for us.

 

Thanks. :)


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#2 of 30 Old 06-05-2013, 08:57 PM
 
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Welcome.gif sillysapling!  I'm sure others in the forum can chime in with more experience than I have, but the name I have seen more often that seems like it could work is Baba.  I don't know the history, but it seems fairly neutral to me.  I think Pop or Papa could be nice too. 

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#3 of 30 Old 06-05-2013, 09:41 PM
 
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My partner is trans (ftm) and the kids all call him Baba. Our oldest is DP's bio son and has continued to use Mom until recently but even he has switched to Baba and then I'm called Mama or Mom.


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#4 of 30 Old 06-06-2013, 03:34 AM
 
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My partner is trans and our kids call him Dad.  Other variants I have heard are papa, papi, daddy, poppy, baba, mio, pops, and many more I can't think of.  We also have two different male donors and came up with a name for one but are working on the other so we have lots of male, "dad-like" names in our brainstorm pile.  


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#5 of 30 Old 06-06-2013, 06:47 AM
 
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Welcome, sillysapling! My partner & I think we'll probably just go with our first names when our kid's born... FWIW, I identify as cis-gender & femme, and DP as genderqueer butch.

Here's one of my favourite parenting blogs, written by a trans guy whose husband is also trans:
http://ishai-wallace.livejournal.com/
I can't remember what their kid calls them, or even if he reveals it, but it's a wonderful & thoughtful read nonetheless.

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#6 of 30 Old 06-06-2013, 07:29 AM
 
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My partner is also FTM and my DD calls him Papa. Good luck!

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#7 of 30 Old 06-06-2013, 09:11 AM
 
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I have friends who use Pomo and Momo--not sure how the identify, but more options for you!

She's here!
And so are the boys!
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#8 of 30 Old 06-06-2013, 12:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone for the suggestions! :) I kind of wish the kid were older so could help with the decision process, that'd make it a little easier!


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#9 of 30 Old 06-10-2013, 11:27 PM
 
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Welcome!

The kids call (genderqueer) DP 'Baba.'  I'm 'mama.'

I've also heard lots of mash-ups that have happened organically, from the kids of friends.  Like, the folks start out wanting to be called Papa and Mama, and then the kids end up giving them nicknames anyway, which stick.  So, who knows ... maybe your kid will be involved in the final decision!

Our oldest (4) also calls us by name too, sometimes.  

(Actually, our 20 month old calls both of us Maba, right now, speaking of mash-ups. Kinda cute.)  


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#10 of 30 Old 06-12-2013, 06:25 PM
 
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A friend of mine who is gender queer goes by "Apa", which I think sounds nice.
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#11 of 30 Old 06-12-2013, 06:57 PM
 
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Just piping in to express gratitude.

 

As a mom who is not queer, but who wants a world where my children can grow up without being boxed into gender expectations, I just want to say that I feel so uplifted when I see these discussions.  I know we are a long ways away from the world I envision, but I am heartened to witness people living and manifesting it each and every day.  Language is so very fascinating.  A very refreshing salve to counterbalance the multiple times a day that I hear and have to respond to the query:  so are you having a boy or a girl?  My goodness, please let my baby be free of these boxes at least until they are born.

 

Much love and gratitude to your families! 

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#12 of 30 Old 06-12-2013, 07:00 PM
 
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You have gotten some nice feedback...maybe look into other languages for synonyms for "parent" and see what sounds good to you and yours.

Welcome!

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#13 of 30 Old 06-12-2013, 07:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you to everyone else who gave suggestions!

 

McGucks- We have tried a bit, I believe that the Latin equivalent of "dad" is Atta, which isn't bad. I like the Icelandic 'pabbi', too.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrmEmbar View Post

Just piping in to express gratitude.

 

As a mom who is not queer, but who wants a world where my children can grow up without being boxed into gender expectations, I just want to say that I feel so uplifted when I see these discussions.  I know we are a long ways away from the world I envision, but I am heartened to witness people living and manifesting it each and every day.  Language is so very fascinating.  A very refreshing salve to counterbalance the multiple times a day that I hear and have to respond to the query:  so are you having a boy or a girl?  My goodness, please let my baby be free of these boxes at least until they are born.

 

Much love and gratitude to your families! 

 

On the bolded- yeah, definitely. A few people gave us trouble for not finding out before the birth- using the "but how will I know what color to get?" argument. Pink and blue are not the only colors!

 

I've read about a few families who are raising their children genderless- which isn't meant to force the child not to have a gender, but rather to ensure they're totally free to express gender however they please (studies have shown that people treat and describe babies differently based on gender, so it's also to avoid that). We really would have liked to be able to do that, and online I try to avoid using gendered terms and such, but we just didn't feel up to the responses we might get. One person we know actually asked if we were planning on doing that- but everyone else assumed we were going the traditional route, so at minimum we'd be having that conversation a LOT.


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#14 of 30 Old 06-21-2013, 08:06 PM
 
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We have a very andro friend who goes by Mapa - I don't know if there's a story behind it.


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#15 of 30 Old 06-21-2013, 09:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by pokeyAC View Post

the name I have seen more often that seems like it could work is Baba.  I don't know the history, but it seems fairly neutral to me.

 

I like Baba too. Baba is "father" in some languages and "Grandmother" in other languages so it feels very gender-neutral to me. smile.gif

 

sillysapling, I hope you and your partner find names that you both feel very comfortable with.


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#16 of 30 Old 06-22-2013, 12:56 PM
 
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The queer roots of "baba" go back to Polly Pagenhart of www.lesbiandad.net, as far as I can tell.  That's where our research 5+ years ago took us!


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#17 of 30 Old 06-23-2013, 08:03 PM
 
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Baba has been around for more than 11 years. I don't remember where I first heard it, was it mentioned in the Brill book?

I haven't met many Babas in the wilds of Ohio. I can say that it confuses a lot of people. My family still, after 10 years, ask my kids, "Where's Mom, uh, Baba?"

We occasionally hear kids address their dads as Baba. It makes me smile. I'm asked about the grandma reference more often. Picking a non-traditional name has gotten me a lot of questions, but fewer than my non-traditional family.

There are a couple of nice things about having a different name. I always know when I'm being summoned at the playground. It's a totally different sound than what they call my partner, so it's easy to distinguish at home.

One funny bit, Baba is easier to say than my name, so I've been called Baba by about a dozen kids.

To the OP, Cordelia's suggestions are nice.

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#18 of 30 Old 09-24-2013, 07:19 PM
 
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omg, loving these suggestions already on just the first few ("baba" is adorbs!), subscribing for now.  i don't know if i want my kiddo to call me mom.  i am more of a genderqueer, though not to the extent that i'm uncomfortable being identified female.  i guess i'm more pan-gendered than non-gendered, though i find gender a bit of a weird cultural mess and hard to talk about in a way that really makes any sense (despite studying it extensively in school!).  but still, since my wife def wants to be called "momma" and later "mom", i do think it'd be cool to have a different thing for the kiddo to call me, just not sure what, that would be cute and not-forced-sounding.  and also not sure yet how i feel about first names for either or both of us, so i'll come back soon and read, but i stupidly clicked on the link to this thread when i really have to run out the door (bad habit of mine)!


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#19 of 30 Old 09-30-2013, 08:37 AM
 
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Baba is a Polish term of endearment for grandmother, the equivalent of Grammy or Nana. Grandmother is Babcia in Polish. I think Baba is a great alternative to Mom/ Dad. Most Americans don't associate Baba with a Polish grandma... well, I do, but I had several Polish grandparents & great-grandparents.


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#20 of 30 Old 09-30-2013, 04:15 PM
 
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My housemate is Kashmiri, and calls her father Baba... In fact, we all do! Apparently it's rather common in Northern India, if not other parts of the region, though my housemate says that she's in the minority among those she knows in the Kashmiri/Indian diaspora: Most call their fathers "Dad" or "Papa". As my kid's grandparents live far away and this Baba is close by and a regular visitor, I'm guessing my kid'll call him Baba too...!

 

Here's an update on where we're at, now that it's getting close to our babe's arrival: Lately, DP has taken to talking to my writhing belly-o-baby (so cute!) and referring to herself as "MaPa". LOL! I can see that sticking...


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#21 of 30 Old 09-30-2013, 05:28 PM
 
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I was going to say that MaPa is one term I recently heard used for the first time. Seems like a good idea.



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#22 of 30 Old 09-30-2013, 05:44 PM
 
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Oh, neat, Pokey! I'll let DP know... Heh heh... Though I'm not sure if she'll be pleased or annoyed that it's already in use...


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#23 of 30 Old 10-03-2013, 08:49 PM
 
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I know the original question was for transgender "dad" type names, but instead of starting a new thread, I figured I'd jump in here. My partner and I are Mom/Mommy and Mama. At least, that's what we're planning on. The older girls just call me Coco. We are starting to use baby sign language with our 3 month old, and so now we are debating what signs to use for each of us. Neither of us really want to use the "Dad" sign. Any ideas? One idea is "mom" and "milk mom," but that might be confusing because "milk" is one of the first signs we're teaching. Not a big problem, but if ya'll have any ideas, or if any of you momma couples have used baby sign language, let me know :)


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#24 of 30 Old 10-03-2013, 10:20 PM
 
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You could do right cheek for 'mama' and left cheek for 'mommy.' Or do the gesture (outspread fingers, aka "5" hand, thumb touches cheek) but to your heart instead?
We used the 'papa' sign for 'baba' ... Same as 'mama' but thumb touches right temple.

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#25 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 05:38 PM
 
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nice suggestions. I thought that Mom was with the thumb on your chin...switching cheeks might be good, but I wonder how well baby could remember right from left. I like having the one be on your heart instead. Milk Mom is funny, but like I said, might get confusing.


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#26 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 06:23 PM
 
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(btw, can i say how exciting it is to see so many of you casually mentioning, in passing, the use of baby signs?!! i studied a bit of linguistics & ASL & in that context learned that babies can use language super young, as evidenced by the babies in deaf households. when we decided to have a baby, i bought a huge stack of books, one about baby signing, and though i haven't cracked it open yet, i keep wondering to myself when we should start building our vocabulary. now i know for sure – though i'm not surprised at all – that there are peeps in here to nerd out about it with. going to look for those topics now, yay!)

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#27 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I figure we'll just use the two baby signs. The signs aren't that widely used, so most other people won't recognize the gendered nature of it. If you know a lot of people who use baby signs- I can certainly understand avoiding the one for "dad" in that situation.


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#28 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 06:46 PM
 
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Mama and baba are easy to pronounce from pretty young, so we stuck with signs for other things.
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#29 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 06:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It did seem like mama/baba/dada/papa were all pretty easy things to learn to say and would probably be learned quite early, so signs for them didn't seem to make much sense to me. We're still too young for baby signs or talking, though. So I wasn't sure.


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#30 of 30 Old 10-04-2013, 06:59 PM
 
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It's all good. They pick up language so quickly that teaching more signs seems great, too. I never had a problem knowing who my babes wanted.

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