what to call step-grandma - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-11-2006, 02:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a grown daughter and stepdaughter. My husband and I have been married for 18 years. My daughter is married and she and her husband have two children that call me Grandma and my husband Grandpa. My husband was like a dad to my daughter cause my ex has had nothing to do with my daughter for years so my grandkids only have 4 grandparents(me, my husband, and my daughter's in-laws). My stepdaughter is also married and told us that she is pregnant. I am thrilled for my stepdaughter. SD's baby will have 5 grandparents(BM, my husband, myself, and SD's in-laws).

However there is a bit of a controversy of what my stepdaughter's baby will call me. I am already called Grandma by my grandchildren and just assumed that SD would have her baby call me that. SD informed that Grandma is reserved for the biological grandmothers(her mom and MIL) and that it would more appropriate for me to pick a nickname like Nana, Nanny, MeeMaw.

I am glad that at least I get a title and will not be called by my first name by SD's baby. SD is at least considering my feelings. But I am concerned that it will be confusing when my grandchildren call me Grandma and my stepgrandchild calls me Nana. Is it okay to have 2 names for the same grandma? I do want to respect SD's feelings, as she feels her mom and MIL get to pick what they want to be called first. SD's mom wants to be called Grandma, which is what my grandkids call me and SD's MIL wants to be called Grammy. I feel if I tell SD that her mom should pick another name that SD will feel as if I am stealing her mom's name from her.

So what is a good compromise? This is so confusing since I already have grandkids, and since I am a step-grandma and SD's baby will already have 2 biological grandmas that also deserve the grandma title.
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Old 05-11-2006, 02:08 AM
 
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What about Grammy. It's pretty close, but different. And the dc will never have to clarify, Grandma who? You are GRAMMY!!!!

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Old 05-11-2006, 06:09 AM
 
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I had two grandmas growing up, both biological. Grandma who was never an issue, because it got put in context.
My boys have four grandads (one stepgrandad, one grandad and two great-grandads)- it's really not an issue, they figure out who they're talking about on an as-and-when basis. They also have a granje, a gran and a nana.
As a compromise, I'd suggest to your sd that she teaches her child to call you "grandma clothilde" (or whatever your given name is.) That way, there's no confusion, you get to keep the title you've been using with your others and your sd's mom is hopefully, happy. Better still, I'd get your dh to suggest it.

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Old 05-11-2006, 07:38 AM
 
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My kids have soooo many grandmas, they have three great-grandmothers living (one just passed last October, so recently had four), two grandmothers and a step-grandmother...

And all of them, except for my mom, who prefers GiGi (grandma gail), go by Grandma or Grandma X (first names for my step-mom and ex-mil, last names for great-grandmas). I guess we're just old fashioned in that it doesn't matter much that there are a whole lot of grandmas. When I was growing up, I called my two grandmothers Grandma B... and Grandma C... when referring to them, and just "Grandma" when speaking to them directly.

I must admit, though, that I do have trouble referring to my step-mom as "grandma" and forget to do so at times. But she joined our family after I was married, I have basically no relationship with her, and she half the time interferes with my dad visiting with us, so it's sort of warrented in our case.

Anyway, I'd go with whatever makes you comfortable, but your grandkids will probably work it out themselves. Having had a daughter who called me by my first name for about 6 months, just because she thought it was cool, sometimes you've got to be flexible to whatever the child actually does.
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Old 05-11-2006, 01:09 PM
 
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As far as having different names for the same grandma, I don't think that will be an issue. I have three sets of cousins and each set has always had our own name for my maternal grandfather. My brother and sister (and neice and nephew) and I call him Papa. One set of my cousins (and their kids) calls him PawPaw; the other set of cousins call him Poppy. We all now who everyone is talking about, but all use our own names.
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Old 05-11-2006, 01:17 PM
 
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my kids have a whole slew of grandmas and grandpas and there has never been any real confusion. when in doubt they say grandpa W or grandma P. the only person who gets any distinction is my husbands dad and he is Papa. we have no idea where it came from. it is just what my dd started calling him one day. My BIL desided he wanted to be papa to his kids so now Noah calls Papa Grandpa but it doesn't seem to be causeing in propblems.

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Old 05-12-2006, 09:14 PM
 
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don't fret, it will all be fine. the kids will never notice anything odd unless you tell them. Some of the other grandkids may experiment with calling you nanna too. Just correct them if it bugs you.
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Old 05-12-2006, 09:30 PM
 
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Let them call you grandma, granny or whatever the kids prefer. I'm pretty sure everybody feel like they have extra grandmas or mamas sometimes that are not relate to them. When the kids get older then they can understand that you're their grandma by marriage but right now they small and dont care who you are long as you show them love.
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Old 05-14-2006, 08:18 PM
 
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Not odd at all~I like grammy!

Our kiddos have my mom & step dad (who raised me since my bio dad died at age 3)
My Dh's dad & step mom (who again raised him when his bio mom left him with his dad at age 2)
And then we have Dh's bio mom that left him & is now around if need be.

The kids call my mom/stepdad "Maw & Paw"

They call Dh's dad/stepmom "Mamaw & Papaw"

They call Dh's bio mom who is a worthless pos (another post though!) "Sharon or sometimes Grandma Sharon" But moreso just Sharon.

They call MY grandma "Punkin" b/c my now 10 y/o son gave her that name when he was 1, and it stuck!

**These are the names our kids call each of these people, and meanwhile our brothers/sisters kids call them something totally differnet, but they all understand.

Sorry this got so long, but I agree with you, at least you get called a "Name" Vs. your first name only!!
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Old 05-14-2006, 08:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djs_girl517
As far as having different names for the same grandma, I don't think that will be an issue. I have three sets of cousins and each set has always had our own name for my maternal grandfather. My brother and sister (and neice and nephew) and I call him Papa. One set of my cousins (and their kids) calls him PawPaw; the other set of cousins call him Poppy. We all now who everyone is talking about, but all use our own names.
I agree. Children understand from an early age that those close to them have different names under different circumstances, often depending on who is saying their "name". I remember knowing that my "Aunt Elsie" was my second cousin's "Gramma" at a family reunion in about first grade. The two and three year olds I teach in my dance classes know what their Mama's name is, what other people call her.

DH's family used "Grandma Firstname" or even "Grandma Lastname" for various matriarchs.

My step-father was going to be "Grand-Jack" to my child. He died before he had the chance to meet her. I had always called him Jack, so Grand-Jack made a lot of sense to us all. What does your sd call you? Is there a variation on it that feels right?

This may all be solved by the child having a strong opinion of what s/he wants to call various extended family members.

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Old 05-16-2006, 10:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann-Marita

My step-father was going to be "Grand-Jack" to my child. He died before he had the chance to meet her. I had always called him Jack, so Grand-Jack made a lot of sense to us all. What does your sd call you? Is there a variation on it that feels right?
I really like that idea. My mom died a couple years ago and Dad has a gf/fiance (supposedly they are never going to get married) who will be around for the long haul. My older girls knew their Grandma well, they like papa's gf well enough but it feels wierd calling her "firstname". My brothers and their women have complicated the situation by declaring "she will never be GM". We (dh & I) have been looking for a compromise, and I think your plan just may work for us! Thanks
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Old 05-17-2006, 02:04 AM
 
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My daughter has two grandmas (my mom and dh's mom), two grandpas (my dad and dh's stepfather), and a G'pa and G'ma (dh's dad and stepmother). She distinguishes the "grandmas" by their first names when needed, but since they live far from each other she doesn't usually need to. She also has a Grammerlynne (good friend of mine named Lynne), and a Grammellie (my grandmother).

We just told everyone to choose what they'd like to be called. I don't think it'll be any more confusing for the children than the fact that your kids call you mom, nieces and nephews call you aunt so and so, or your husband calls you thus-and-so. They figure out that there are different relationships going on.

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Old 05-17-2006, 03:10 AM
 
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Our kids have two Grandma's(last name if needed,)and a Gram and a Great-Gram.Gram just got promoted from Grandma or first name.,We'll see if it sticks.

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Old 05-17-2006, 02:11 PM
 
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Let the kids call you whatever they want! We planned on my DS calling my mom "grammy" but he calls her g-ma, or whatever else he feels like calling her at the time. If the child's mom really doesn't like what the child calls you, then let her do the correcting.

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Old 05-18-2006, 02:14 PM
 
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personally, I think the 2 g-mas are a wee bit out of line trying to "claim" a name.....but anyhoo...

Quote:
Is it okay to have 2 names for the same grandma?
Growing up we called our g-ma (mom's mom) Baba. Our cousins, (moms bro's kids) called the same woman, Nanny. I dont know why. We thought it was pretty funny to be sitting around at xmas calling for her, "Nanny!" "Baba!".
I dont know how she felt about it, never thought to ask. It was just the way things were. We called our g-ma on our dad's side Baba too.

My kids call my mom Bubbie and dh mom, Grandma. My ds calls his other g-ma, Grammy, (which his other siblings from his dad call her too). Side note, my kids call the same woman Grammy too, even though she's nowhere close to being their g-ma. But I her for it......

So, I think its perfectly fine to have 2 different names. Just think, it will be between you and grandchild alone, you wont have to share it with anyone else.
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Old 05-21-2006, 03:02 PM
 
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my husbands nephews call his mom Mimi .. my kids just do the same because thats what they hear her being called
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Old 06-12-2006, 08:24 PM
 
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My kids have lots of grandmas steps/and bios and they are all called different names. Plus, some of the kids call my dad Papa, and others call him grandpa. I think it is only confusing to the adults. I think it is sad that the name "grandma" is only alloted to 2 biological grandma's. My dss has only seen his bio grandpa once so imagine if he couldn't call dh's stepdad "grandpa." Will they tell the children not to call you grandma? My son calls all grandma-aged ladies "grandma" including all my aunts which he now says are his grandmas. Who cares? My husband calls me my first name, my kids call me mom and no one is confused (so yes its ok to have different kids call you different things). This is one part of stepparenting where I think the adults need to back off and let the kids sort it out for themselves! My kids call their grandmas Grandma (last name) or Grandma (first name) regardless of the step/bio connection.


The day I married dh, my then-5 yo stepson yelled, "Yeah, now I have more grandparents!" He is anxious for his mom to remarry for the same reason. You can never have enough grandmas!
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