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DP's nephew - what would you expect him to call me?

(337 Posts)
SarahAndQuack Thu 29-Oct-20 11:08:16

This is probably really petty but I'm wondering what others think.

My DP and I got together when nephew had just turned four; he's now nine and so has known me more than half his life. He didn't really know my DP's ex well, as they'd been split up for a while.

I've noticed that he never calls me 'Auntie Sarah'. He occasionally uses my first name but mostly simply doesn't address me. He's also quite rude on occasion. He is having a rough time at the moment - his parents split up a bit over a year ago and it's hard on him. So a bit of rudeness is something I'd expect to see and not worry about. But the kinds of things he says and does ruffle me up a bit - for example he'll totally ignore me when I speak to him/if I ask him something, but will do it if my partner or his mother asks. Occasionally I get a reply like 'I don't need to do that' or 'no I don't have to,' and often he'll tell me what my DD (who's three) can and can't do. I don't think this last thing is intended to be cheeky at all, but I've noticed he doesn't do it with my partner.

It crossed both mine and my partner's minds that this may have something to do with us being woman, and him not having any other exposure to same-sex couples (though, as I say, he has known me for years ...).

I feel awkward asking him to call me 'Auntie Sarah' as he calls my partner 'Auntie Firstname,' but I find it kind of weird he doesn't. What would you think? For the record my own DD calls both of us by our first names on occasion; I don't find first names from children rude, it's just the way he seems not to see me as having that role at all.

OP’s posts: |
VettiyaIruken Thu 29-Oct-20 11:11:36

It would be auntie for me.

I wonder if things are being said behind your backs because ime children are influenced by what they hear adults say.

Triskelline Thu 29-Oct-20 11:12:46

I have an almost nine year old, and how he addresses my and DH's siblings is very much an individual situation between him and them -- I don't think he addresses any of them as Auntie or Uncle much any more, come to think of it -- or perhaps in the case of my brother to distinguish him from my father, who has the same name -- but then he's always addressed his grandparents by shortened versions of their first names, rather than as Granny or Grandad. He certainly doesn't call any of their partners Auntie or Uncle -- everyone is straight.

Waveysnail Thu 29-Oct-20 11:13:58

First name is fine. The ignoring is just rude and I'd pull any child up on it.

FlitterMouse Thu 29-Oct-20 11:14:01

You're not his auntie. He is only 9 and already having a hard time with his parents splitting up. Poor kid

Newtothis2017 Thu 29-Oct-20 11:14:13

It would be just your first name. You aren't his aunt. Even if you were married you aren't his aunt. I never called my aunts or uncles married partners by anything other than their first names.

TreestumpsAndTrampolines Thu 29-Oct-20 11:15:37

Just your name really.

Unless it was a family where everyone tangentally related gets called Auntie/Uncle (like we did our neighbours when we were younger). Although at 9 I think he's on the cusp of first names anyhow, rather than that, which is more for little ones in the UK

pinkyredrose Thu 29-Oct-20 11:15:52

Why are you around him so much? And you accept him being rude? Up your standards, tell him firmly to not ignore you.

Di11y Thu 29-Oct-20 11:17:47

Personally if he's happier with just your first name that should be accepted. But the disrespectful way he behaves should be picked up on.

Azerothi Thu 29-Oct-20 11:18:33

You're his aunties girlfriend, no relation whatsoever. Your first name is fine.

As for your suggestion to ask him to call you aunty - poor poor child. Don't you think he's going through enough without you piling on him too?

Disappointedkoala Thu 29-Oct-20 11:18:49

Similar age nephew here who rarely calls me auntie xxxx or even by my name. I think it's just part of being that age, he's generally a bit rude, cheeky and grumpy though! I'm probably not very exciting to hang round with for a 9yo.

SarahAndQuack Thu 29-Oct-20 11:18:59

Thanks all!

@VettiyaIruken, yes, that worries me a bit too.

@FlitterMouse - in my family, we'd say anyone who's the sister or sister-in-law of your parents is your auntie. So my partner is auntie to my brother's children. Do you mean we're not blood related?

It's not the first names on its own that I find strange, it's that DP is 'Auntie' and I'm not.

I'm pretty sure he calls his dad's sister and her husband 'auntie' and 'uncle'. The difference is that they're married and he's known them since he was born.

OP’s posts: |
Meowza74 Thu 29-Oct-20 11:19:16

Hmm, I think you're focusing too much on this.

You're not his auntie by blood and you're not married to his auntie. I think first name is fine.

Sirzy Thu 29-Oct-20 11:19:38

My nephews don’t call my partner uncle, he where all 4 and over when he came into their lives so it would be odd, the same way my son doesn’t call him Dad.

To be honest my eldest nephew is 11 and I have told him I don’t mind if he now wants to drop the aunty and just call me by my first name.

I don’t see how it can be a reaction to it being a same sex relationship because surely he has just grown up sigh that as a normal thing?

Mumbum2011 Thu 29-Oct-20 11:19:44

My nieces and nephews just call me by my first name.

AryaStarkWolf Thu 29-Oct-20 11:20:00

It's a really small thing to be upset about. Do you think it's more about you thinking he doesn't see you as in a proper relationship because it's a same sex one? You can't really force the kid to call you auntie though

SarahAndQuack Thu 29-Oct-20 11:20:12

@Azerothi - I don't want to pile on him at all. As I said in my OP, he's having a rough time and I have a lot of sympathy for that. I also think it may be he's genuinely not sure what to call me because he doesn't know how to navigate the same-sex issue.

OP’s posts: |
trevthecat Thu 29-Oct-20 11:20:33

We don't call our aunts and uncles aunty Sarah etc and neither do the kids. Really don't think this is a big deal

RedskyAtnight Thu 29-Oct-20 11:21:44

My actual niece/nephews call me by my first name. Or nothing. I don't think what he calls you matters too much. He should, however, be at least treating you politely.

SarahAndQuack Thu 29-Oct-20 11:21:50

@AryaStarkWolf - yes, that's exactly what I was saying.

I don't want to force him to call me anything. As I said in my OP, I don't mind first names from children (I know some people do). But I also don't know if he doesn't quite get how to parse that relationship? It's like he's not quite sure what my role is in my DD's life or in relation to him, and so he doesn't quite know how to talk to me.

OP’s posts: |
Nittersing Thu 29-Oct-20 11:22:24

I'm not married to my long term partner (8 yrs together) his nephews call me by my first name not 'auntie nittersing'. I'm very happy with this. I'm also very happy for the rest of my Nieces and Nephews to call me by my name. I don't need the title of Auntie to know that I'm an Auntie and loved 💖.

Porcupineinwaiting Thu 29-Oct-20 11:22:36

@Newtothis2017 I find that such a bizarre response. I am aunt to the children of my siblings and my husband's siblings equally. We dont separate on blood lines, why would we? Some call me aunt or auntie and some just use my first name but that doesnt run down blood lines either. They are all my family.

IndecentFeminist Thu 29-Oct-20 11:22:44

We don't tend to use auntie or uncle, just first name. In your scenario I'd think it perfectly normal for your partner to be auntie and you to be first name.

SarahAndQuack Thu 29-Oct-20 11:23:00

That must be lovely, @nittersing.

OP’s posts: |
foxyroxyyy Thu 29-Oct-20 11:23:08

Get over yourself. Your dp is his aunt you aren't.

Also stop conflating issues. Maybe he just doesn't like you hmm

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