to not want to be called 'Mummy'

(49 Posts)
StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Sat 26-Oct-13 18:27:22

by MIL?
I've asked her not to. I've politely reminded her that I have a name.

"Baby is very smiley, isn't she, Mummy?"

We have names! We are not Mummy, Daddy and Baby!

RedHelenB Sat 26-Oct-13 18:28:58

Not owrth getting worked up over. It will change as your baby grows!

edam Sat 26-Oct-13 18:32:24

Very irritating and patronising but I think it's one of those battles that you aren't going to win. And she will stop, eventually - you can only really use that form when they are babies, older children would think she's barking.

So my advice would be to let it wash over you.

zipzap Sat 26-Oct-13 18:36:06

Just don't reply when she uses it to address you - and if she calls you on it just express surprise as you assumed she was talking to her mother and that it was a strange habit that she was obviously going a bit doolally...

Look on one bright side - at least she's not calling herself mummy to your baby. That one annoyed me and a heck of a lot of other people here on MN!

Euphemia Sat 26-Oct-13 18:36:37

My MIL still does this and DD's 11. angry

I can understand why she did it when DD was little, to make clear to DD that she was talking about/to me, but really ... enough!

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Sat 26-Oct-13 18:39:34

I now have 2 DDs called 'baby'!
DD1 is 2.9. My head will explode she's still doing it in 9 years!

reelingintheyears Sat 26-Oct-13 18:42:12

YANBU, it would drive me crazy, I might have to kill her.

I can't even stand people referring to 'Baby', it's 'The' Baby or use it's bloody name.

shrieklesoda Sat 26-Oct-13 18:44:50

my MIL calls my kids 'it'. confused As in 'how's it getting on at school?'. Thing is, she is the most devoted, loving granny, she is not some toxic dragon, but for some reason in her world children are 'it'. It gives me the rage.

kangarooshoes Sat 26-Oct-13 18:45:57

Calling herself "mummy" is worse, happened to me, too. (Grrrrrrr)

I think you'll have bigger battles than this!

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Sat 26-Oct-13 18:48:18

I think it's the fact that the 'Mummy'/'Baby' thing forms part of a constant running commentary too.
"Look Mummy, Baby has a book!" etc I KNOW! I JUST GAVE IT TO HER!

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Sat 26-Oct-13 18:48:34

And breathe.

stella69x Sat 26-Oct-13 18:50:40

I had to ask people to call me mummy in front of my DS when he was first leaning to talk as he would try to say my name rather than mum/ ms/ mummy, I figured this was because he always heard me being called by my name so he was copying as that's what babies do.

Raddy Sat 26-Oct-13 18:55:50

Ooh no, how annoying. Tell her to stop with immediate effect.

I am also irritated by friends who call themselves mummy when speaking to their kids 'give it to mummy'. What's wrong with 'me'?

Boardingblues Sat 26-Oct-13 18:57:00


DoJo Sat 26-Oct-13 19:05:56

I didn't want my son to call me mummy, but he still does!

NotYoMomma Sat 26-Oct-13 19:06:42

pick. your. battles

Euphemia Sat 26-Oct-13 19:10:55

We went on holiday with MIL when DD was about 5. MIL seemed to think that DD was incapable of sitting in the car without constant stimulation, so I had to endure a running commentary of everything MIL saw out of the window for the first hour. (Look! A cow! A red car! See the big horsey!, etc.)

Thankfully we then joined the motorway, so I said "I need to concentrate really hard now, DD, so no talking please." smile

thebody Sat 26-Oct-13 19:30:13

ah cut her some slack. could he worse she could be calling herself mummy like another poster said her mil kept doing.

we call ourselves mummy and daddy still with our kids, youngest 14!! ha ha.

seriously though we ARE mummy and daddy to the cat.

when my older son was 15 and had friends round I did famously say to the cat, ' whose a wet Pussey then come and cuddle mummy' cue sniggers.

make a joke of it to mil. chill out.

Herisson Sat 26-Oct-13 19:30:58

MIL calls me, her mother (dead for the past five years), my mother and herself Mum. It DOES MY FUCKING HEAD IN and half the time I have no idea who she is talking about. As I call my own mother by her name, it is even more unreasonable. And DD calls me by my name at least half the time so she gets confused as well. DD is seven, btw, so definitely able to realise that people have names as well as family positions.

My MIL has spent the first year of both my DCs life calling them 'The Baby'. It gives me serious rage.

She has, and will have, no other grandchildren. Why not use their bloody names? They are not hard to pronounce or remember. WTF.

thebody Sat 26-Oct-13 19:33:27

Euphemia, slip night nurse in her tea before travel ( mil obviously) she will be out for the count.

Herisson Sat 26-Oct-13 19:35:55

She says things like 'I was just thinking about that meal at yours when Mum and Mum came over and we had sausages and mash. DD, wasn't that fun, didn't Mum cook lovely sausages?'

Seriously. It is like talking to a mad person. She is otherwise fully compos mentis and not in any way having a senior moment.

HearMyRoar Sat 26-Oct-13 19:55:59

My mum did this a couple of times until I pointed out that my own mother calling me mummy implied an unlikely use of a time machine and a relationship with my grandfather that was frankly just wrong on so many levels. She hasn't done it since grin

CrohnicallyTired Sat 26-Oct-13 20:29:02

I don't see anything wrong with using 'mummy' when you're talking to the child (eg 'take that to mummy'). Like a pp said, using proper names can confuse the child. After all, if the child is the only person who's allowed to say 'mummy' then how are they going to learn the word 'mummy' and who it applies to?

For that reason I call myself mummy to DD who is only just 1 because she doesn't reliably call me mummy yet, when she does I'll use the proper pronouns. I also refer to her both by pronoun and by name so she links the 2 (when we're playing I might say something like 'it's your turn now, DD's turn')

However, I do find it odd when people talk to me rather than DD and call me mum/mummy. The hospital are worst for this, at DD's outpatient appointments it's a stream of 'lay her down, mum, now hold her here, mum, I'll be back in a minute, mum'. I know they do it because they a) don't have my name on record as it's DD's appointment not mine, and b) they don't like to assume our surnames are the same. However, I work in a school and if I can't remember a child's mum's name I would just say 'Is it Mrs Childsurname?'

Mojavewonderer Sun 27-Oct-13 06:43:13

I really don't see what all the fuss is about. It's never bothered me. I know I am a mum and I don't care who refers to me as mum.

harticus Sun 27-Oct-13 06:46:27

Yeah don't get the fuss either. My Nan called me "Baby" till the day she died - I was 39 then.

Mummyoftheyear Sun 27-Oct-13 06:50:24

Irritating, nauseating... but old fashioned and harmless.

MrsWembley Sun 27-Oct-13 07:07:35

You do know this is how they learn language, don't you?hmm

Especially with the running commentary; yes, it's dull as ditchwater to listen to and even more so to actually do, but seriously, this is how they learn!!!

Really, if this is all you have to complain about with your MiL, you're very lucky...

SatinSandals Sun 27-Oct-13 07:13:18

One of the reasons children learn to say daddy first is that they hardly ever hear mummy.
Save getting annoyed for the things that matter.
I call my MIL Mary but with the DCs it would be natural to say ' Shall we go for a walk? What do you think Grandma?' How will a child learn she is Grandma if she is always Mary?
Have you really thought it through OP?

maddening Sun 27-Oct-13 07:17:35

Just reply in kind - "that's right grandma - now does grandma want to put the kettle on" etc she'll soon tire.

ceramicunicorn Sun 27-Oct-13 07:18:16

My pil's call each other mummy and daddy. My dh and sil are in their thirties. It makes me feel a bit sick.

WhenSheWasBadSheWasExhausted Sun 27-Oct-13 07:20:55

Mine does this and it is a bit annoying. She once asked if mummy wanted a cuof tea and dd wasn't even in the room.

I let it slide as she is a lovely woman and is only doing to make things easier for dd.

ICameOnTheJitney Sun 27-Oct-13 07:46:49

My MIL did this YANBU!!!!!!!!!! It drove me mad so I told her and she took umbrage. Still. I don't care.

selsigfach Sun 27-Oct-13 07:51:53

I think it's ok when talking to a child about their parent, eg "That's a lovely picture, show it to mummy", but asking if "mummy" would like a cup of tea, regardless if whether or not a small child is in the vicinity would make me heave.

natwebb79 Sun 27-Oct-13 08:23:01

Do people actually get bothered by this?!

notadoctor Sun 27-Oct-13 08:40:22

It seems a silly thing to get worked up about - especially if the relationship's good. It's a way for her to acknowledge your role in the family.

ICameOnTheJitney Sun 27-Oct-13 08:41:28

It might be silly to SOME people but to others it is dehumanizing. I am not just anyone's "Mummy" that title is for my children....other adults calling me that is not only ridiculous but faintly creepy and removes my NAME and my IDENTITY.

MamaBear17 Sun 27-Oct-13 10:03:25

My dd is two, she always tells my mum off when she calls her 'baby'. It is very funny! DD put her on the step once, until she said her name properly!

notadoctor Sun 27-Oct-13 10:07:58

I appreciate different people find different things irritating/ upsetting but I don't really see how it's dehumanising - isn't it about acknowledging your role in a given situation? In that way - to me - it doesn't seem al that different to calling someone Doctor or Nurse or a teacher Miss/ Sir or a pilot Captain. My DD is now old enough to understand Mummy's name's 'notadoctor' but I think when she was younger it helped her to always hear me referred to as Mummy (and Dad as Dad, Nan as Nan etc).

notadoctor Sun 27-Oct-13 10:08:45

If someone called me Mummy when my DD wasn't there I suppose I may find that a bit more jarring...

fanjofarrow Sun 27-Oct-13 10:16:43

my MIL calls my kids 'it'. confused As in 'how's it getting on at school?'. Thing is, she is the most devoted, loving granny, she is not some toxic dragon, but for some reason in her world children are 'it'. It gives me the rage.

Sorry, but this made me giggle. ''It'' was a term of affection in our house when I was a kid!

pictish Sun 27-Oct-13 10:19:06

Nope...can't get worked up over that.

ICameOnTheJitney Sun 27-Oct-13 10:39:37

Notadoctor I think it's part of the fact that society just LOVES placing women in their role for life....once you're a Mother that's IT! You're frigging defined as "a working Mother" " a stay at home mother" "A Mummy Blogger" or whatever and it winds me up.

I am me. I am also a my children...they call me Mummy...I am not that to anyone else...and my other roles in life as ME are just that.

nennypops Sun 27-Oct-13 11:17:04

I think it's worse when strangers do this, e.g. social workers and teachers. I've seen letters from council social workers when they refer to something that "mum" has done and I always want to get hold of them and ask what their mother has to do with anything.

ICameOnTheJitney Sun 27-Oct-13 11:24:00

Nenny I know! My friend got her son assessed by a developmental paed and the notes say things like "Mum is excellent with X and knows just how to help him on in his language..." confused Wtf? Why not call her "Mrs X" or "Miss X" or even Joan!>???

slothlike Sun 27-Oct-13 11:43:26

I much prefer my PILs to refer to me as 'mummy' when talking to my 3yo DS. They used to only ever refer to me by name to him, and then DS started calling me by my name too, which I hated. It actually really annoyed me, because MIL once told me about how my DH used to never call her 'mum' or 'mummy' and only used her actual name, and how it made her sad (my DH still has real trouble calling her 'mum' because it feels weird to him as he never did it as a child, and he often gets around the problem by just not referring to her as anything at all...) but then it would seem like she was trying to deliberately manufacture the same problem for me, because she'd call my DH 'daddy' in front of DS, but only use my name. Even in the same sentence. E.g., "Where are daddy and [my name]?" FIL would do the same, and seemed to think DH and I were being a bit weird when, after DS began to follow suit, DH saw that I was upset and asked him to refer to me as "your mummy" in front of DS in future.

BUT, it does get annoying when people aren't actually talking to my child and refer to me as 'mum', so I can see where you're coming from. Old health visitor used to do this, and I suspected at the time that it was because she had no idea what my name was. On the other hand, I sometimes accidentally call my DH 'daddy' when DS isn't even around, just because it has become ingrained. Was a bit weird at first... but maybe this is partly what's going on with your MIL?

natwebb79 Sun 27-Oct-13 15:34:03

My parents and in-laws do the same with my husband (refer to 'daddy') so I really can't get worked up about 'gender stereotyping' and 'dehumanising' here. I really had no idea that anybody analysed such things so deeply until I joined this site. I learn something new every day. grin

Euphemia Sun 27-Oct-13 15:38:34

Oh I have a whole lot more to complain about with regards to my MIL! Calling me Mummy is a small thing.

SatinSandals Sun 27-Oct-13 15:58:39

They analyse everything natwebb, you are not safe with a comment about the weather!
I tend to do it if taking to the child. Last week I said to a child 'if daddy lifts you up you can .........'. I wasn't speaking to the father, I didn't know his name and 'your father' isn't the vocabulary I would use with a 2 yr old that I had never seen before. His father did lift him up and he had a great time and hopefully he didn't go home and analyse my words. ( I shall continue doing it even if analysed because I am comfortable with it and parents need to learn that they can't control everyone their child comes into contact with!)

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