This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Daddy to dad(172 Posts)
My kids 10,9, 7.5 came home after the weekend (father just moved in with gf who wants a baby) and told me that their father had told them they were too old to refer to him as daddy and that other kids would make fun of them as they were too old.
Cue automatic claws out reflex from me.
This has come out of the blue- they’re very young for their age, he’s always been daddy but explained that they had to move to dad.
They’re upset. AIBU by thinking... well it’s a bit unreasonable. Ex still refers to his own father as daddy!
Kids are upset, I’m annoyed but don’t want to lose my temper if I’m being overly sensitive.
I put weekend, it was half term here for the past week and I keep thinking today is Monday!
Personally, I would say they are a bit too old for daddy and mummy, but if they prefer it there’s no harm is there?
Maybe they should ask their dad(dy) why it’s ok for him but not for them?
I distinctly remember being in Y2 and a boy getting ripped into because he still called his mum “mummy”. It was one of those things that kids fixate on and lasted until about Y5 I think. Poor old Charles.
If it were me I'd tell the kids they can call him by his first name,
rather than "Dad", completely their choice.
It’s surely something they decide for themselves when they’re ready, not something that can, or should, be dictated to them. Especially not in relation to an impending baby - way to make your children feel pushed out, much?
(My eldest is 11 and still calls me Mummy - entirely his choice, although my children have been well schooled in the art of not giving a fuck about what anyone else thinks. I’m so proud )
24 years of age and i still call my dad, daddy. Think it should be left completely up to your children and what they feel comfortable with.
I agree it should be up to the kids to decide when they want to change from daddy to dad. I remember when my son turned 7 he said to me is it ok if I call you mum now I'm 7, I'm too old for mummy and that was it. My dd is 8 and says she is going to call me mummy forever.
I also think that they're a bit old for daddy and mummy, but I think it's as much of a cultural thing as anything else. It'd be very unusual, where I live, to hear a 10 year old refer to either of their parents as daddy or mummy.
But of course it should be up to your children. I don't know what you can do about it though. You can't make him accept them calling him daddy.
They should call him what they are comfy with but be aware that his warning is genuine. People pick on one another for anything and everything and words are one of the prime targets.
When I speak to my faher I call him Daddy (I am 45) but when I refer to him I call him "my dad" or "Dad did....Dad said..." and have done for as long as I can remember.
So they can still call him Daddy without getting teased for it.
As a woman who's ex husbands new wife had MAOR issues with me and our kids I realise I am projecting but....I smell GF kicking off. She wants him to be Daddy to their kid but not to yours and has invented this to convince him they must call him Dad.
Bollocks to that. I called my father daddy till he died - I was 56. Wouldn’t occur to me to change just because other people have silly notions about such things.
And I agree with Pyongyang, the GF’s hand is in this. I actually think this is quite cruel of them, Dad sounds quite distant and unaffectionate to my ears and probably to your DC too. At this stage with a new baby potentially in play, this is the last thing they need.
I have no advice on how to play this, it depends on how easy it would be to talk to your ex about their feelings. If you can’t get him to see this, I suppose you are going to have to try and put a positive spin on it. It stinks though.
I’m 23 and call my parents mummy and daddy to their face, around friends i refer to them as mum and dad. It’s what I’ve always done so why would I change it?
If her ex is like mine, all she has to do is wait it out until the access visits taper off...........work, busy, work, away, soon, work......
20 year old DD cant remember what her father looks like as she last saw him when she was 3 and him and his GF got engaged and GF was desperate for a baby. On the one hand, demanding young kids EOW (and maintenance) and on the other a full work and social life, a very very active TTC sex life and avoiding child support. Poor kids had no chance did they? Yes, yes, projection.... I know!
So sorry to hear that, Pyongyang, it’s a common story but no less painful.
There's no bloody age limit on it! What an arsehole. I bet his gf has said this. It probably irritates her....often people without children can think of young kids as being immature when they're just normal!
I would tell the fucker that he's upset them!
My adult DDs call me Mummy, though would refer to me to other people as my mum. Same with Daddy/dad re my husband.
I agree with Pyongyang too, and with Myimaginarycat - this is the GF's influence and also that it's cruel.
The DCs have a right to have a relationship with their father on their own terms. They have a right to their own history with their father and to know him and address him as daddy.
They have the right for the adults around them to make sure all the change in their lives is done at their own pace. Not everything at once or in a short period of time. New GF has just set up home with their father, possible new baby, new family situation (mummy here, daddy there and GF too) and now new name they must call daddy? That is too much.
My mother is 85 and all her siblings are well into their 70s and 80s but still refer to grandad as Daddy.
My DCs all call me Mommy. Oldest is 28.
I have cousins who called their mother Mummy always, no change to Mum.
Your DH should be warned that it is not unknown for children to decide they want nothing to do with parents who treat them poorly, and that all of yours, despite being young for their age, are fast approaching the age when a judge would listen to any requests from them along those lines.
How easy is it to communicate with your ex? Can you text him and tell him the children are very upset about his insistence to call him dad and they will continue to call him daddy? I agree, this has his gfs stamp all over it.
I find this such a sad request. My four kids range in age from 18 to 6, they all call me Mum/Mummy/Mama. It tends to be more Mum from the older ones and more Mama from the youngest it's completely their choice.
You're dc are potentially going to have a half sibling with your ex and his new gf. Pick your battles, keep your dignity, and try not to stress about the little things. This is a little thing. Totally up to your ex he wants to be called regardless of who did or didn't put the idea in his head.
How have you approached with your dc?
What's all this 'too old?' I've never realised there was a cut off point? I'm nearly 30 and still call my parents mummy and daddy, I would never use mum and dad even when we're all old and crusty. I'd be so upset if DS decided he didn't want to call me mummy anymore
I wouidn't rush to blame the new DP. For all you know, he's always disliked being called Daddy, and just prefers Dad. Timing of request just coincidence, or because he's seeing it as a new start himself.
But even if you have reasons to really think it's her, I think this is something you have to let go. Not least because you can't do anything about it, and because it's a change that may well, ave happened at some point anyhow (DC1 is about that age, and when one changes the rest often follow).
So all you can do is smile and nod, so they don't see it as a big deal.
In my experience, the more upper class someone is, the longer they call their parents mummy and daddy.... So I reckon you’re solid middle class if you have a son who’s still calling his father ‘daddy’ at age 10.
Well I'm 30 and still have a mummy and daddy! I just don't refer to them as such when speaking to others. My mum would hate it if I called her 'mum' so I just never have and she would never refer to herself as such. I call my dad, dad/daddy, or a joke version of his first name. Your ExH sounds quite cruel.