To be upset to hear DS referred as "hyper boy" by his cousin

(44 Posts)
Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 19:35:44

Context: ILs on Skype with DBiL and DNephews. DD1 and DD2 were here and DNephew says "Where is hyper-boy?", clearly referring to DS, 4. My lovely nephew is 5 and he's clearly using words from his parents. I am so upset.
For the record, DS is very active and excitable, but nothing out of the ordinary. No problems at all at school.
I just find it horrible that his own uncle would use this label when referring to him in front of his children. For the record, DH is not a fan of his DB and I was trying to build bridges for the sake of DMil and the children.

thebody Sun 10-Feb-13 19:41:25

Well yes but have to say our ds 2 was known affectionately in the family as trigger ( bit flaky)and dh is eeyor.( cup half empty) dd is HRH..

Just give them affectionate names and see how it goes.

Annunziata Sun 10-Feb-13 19:43:45

Hyper? I don't see much wrong with that.

What's the problem?

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 19:46:21

OK, just me then. I don't find "Hyper-boy" to be a particularly affectionate nickname.

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 19:47:31

I don't refer to my nieces and nephews as "xx-girl" or "yy-boy" for a start.

Flisspaps Sun 10-Feb-13 19:47:49

I'd just take it to mean lively and excitable - just as you've described him.

Annunziata Sun 10-Feb-13 19:49:45

One of my sons was called 'big fat x' by his grandmother for the first five years of his life. That was a problem. Hyper-boy or girl sounds affectionate to me.

thebody Sun 10-Feb-13 19:52:32

Edma, that's what I am saying. Make up names for them all and then refer to them as such in Skype.. Make u feel better.

Bluestocking Sun 10-Feb-13 20:01:41

I think Hyperboy sounds like an affectionate superhero nickname. I doubt it's meant to be hurtful.

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 20:02:24

Must be me, then. My friend thinks the same as you.
It's so something I would never do which is maybe why it really offended me.

It's not just you OP. I wouldn't like that either, but then I am very much in in the family (in law) that like to label every child and I battle against it. My DS is the 'rough' one and my nephew is 'grumpy and awkward'...
Nicknames are only ok when they are affectionate but if they don't 'feel' right then it's not.
I should have stopped it with my ds when it was all superhero/hyper references that didn't sit we'll but seemed fairly harmless, as he has soon become the scapegoat for many a family incident and it is the only behaviour commented upon I.e. he could play perfectly nicely for 2 hours but if he then slips up everyone is all nodding and sharing looks (or picking him up and shaking him, which happened too...whole other story)
Just don't let him be labelled.

thebody Sun 10-Feb-13 20:12:00

I guess everyone is different but for us nick names are so a part of all our family, nieces and nephews as well. All done in affection but I suppose could be taken the wrong way.

HecateWhoopass Sun 10-Feb-13 20:12:18

I also don't think offence was meant. It's an affectionate sort of nickname, imo. But that might be because I don't think there's anything wrong or negative about a kid being very active. Mine are, and I laugh about it. A friend's boy is and it's lovely to see him happily bouncing about.

If you think that she does see it as wrong and it is therefore meant negatively, then I could understand why you wouldn't like it.

Do you think that it implies a criticism of him? Is there anything that she does or says that would support that?

MrsDeVere Sun 10-Feb-13 20:17:27

I don't see the issue myself.
But it upsets you so you should say something.
Be prepared for your family to be taken aback and offended themselves though.

HollyBerryBush Sun 10-Feb-13 20:20:23

At 5 your nephew is at school. He is quite able at that age to form opinions on behaviour witnessed.

Why would you assume BIL and not SIL had chosen the name.

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 20:27:26

Thinking more about why it upset me:
1/The parents never called him this in front of us. They just clearly referred to him as this.
2/Labelling a child is just shit IMO.
2/DNs are pretty quiet and reserved and so is DD1. DS is the only live wire.
3/DFil clearly favours DD and DS is always fighting for attention and getting worse and worse when he doesn't get it.

I just know it wasn't meant in a nice way.
But I do realise that I am making assumptions, and that 3/ is not directly related to the issue grin

gordyslovesheep Sun 10-Feb-13 20:28:50

hyper - just means active and exited - not seeing the issue I am afraid

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 20:30:37

I think it's meant as short for hyperactive. And "anything-boy" is not very warm IMO.

PixelAteMyFace Sun 10-Feb-13 20:32:38

I can understand OP being upset as `hyper` is not a term that is generally used admiratively when describing someone.

Nicknames are lovely as long as they are merely affectionate and don`t have negative connotations.

As a child my grandfather always called me `Beefy`. I was not overweight at all, but have spent my entire life feeling like an ungainly lump - even in my twenties when I was a size eight I never felt good about my body.

OP`s DS is too young to understand yet, but she should have a word with her DB and tell him how she feels.

AlfalfaMum Sun 10-Feb-13 20:38:48

Yanbu

If it was meant affectionately it would be fine, but you know it's meant disparagingly and that's not on.
In my experience most 4 year olds are loud and energetic (my 3 girls all were), it's not fair to pigeonhole them.

MrsDeVere Sun 10-Feb-13 20:40:43

It does depend on the context. Only you can tell really.

My family used to go on and on about my DS1. He was the first boy in the family. They carried on like he was some crazy thing. He was very active but they had been used to very placid girls (not because they were girls, they just happened to be girls and placid).

Edma Sun 10-Feb-13 20:50:10

And if it was affectionate, surely they would have called him this to his/our face. Not referred to him like this behind our back.
I am probably too wet/soft, and overreacting, but it just puts me off. I have to make loads of efforts as DH doesn't really like his brother (although he likes his SIL and the DNs) and I have pushed for us to spend more time together, mostly for the children to spend time with their cousins.
They are supposed to come and spend 2 weeks with us this summer. DH wasn't keen to start with. So that's not helping.

Thinking about it, I still want the children to spend time together. I just will need to make sure this doesn't happen again.

DoJo Sun 10-Feb-13 21:06:13

Apart from anything, it may be something they have said just once and he has turned it into a nickname, rather than something routinely spoken about when your son's name comes up. I wouldn't worry if it were me, but if you feel strongly about it then maybe ask them not to call him that because it upsets you.

Corygal Sun 10-Feb-13 21:09:33

It's quite endearing.

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