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to think that referring to all family friends as Uncle/Auntie is odd and confusing.

(61 Posts)
Momdeguerre Mon 20-Jul-09 22:18:59

I appreciate it is not going to destory the moral fibre of society but I object to being referred to as 'Auntie' by all and sundry or to people who call any family/tenuous friend Auntie/Uncle.

No objection for relatives or even very close friends/god children etc but I don't like the habit of all friends being given this moniker. E.g. my mum's neighbours daughter - who I have can't have met more than twice asks her DS to refer to me as 'Auntie'.. . . .

MaggieVirgo Mon 20-Jul-09 22:23:07

Yuck, put your foot down!

Mind you, when my friend got a new Mercedes and my son loved it! he's not four yet! he 'oooohed' and 'aaahed' over it, for a JOKE we called her "auntie Jillian" for a week or two! It made her shudder. She said , I will never remember your birthday, or your name boy!

madlentileater Mon 20-Jul-09 22:23:24

it's not common practice round here.
It was when I was little though I think only in our circles...I think it's a class thing.

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 22:24:56

not class - more cultural - and more of a symptom of people's dislike for the whole extended family/village raising a child thing.

Doesn't bother me in the slightest.

hester Mon 20-Jul-09 22:27:01

We've had this thread before! It may well a class thing; it's certainly a cultural thing. I grew up never calling anyone auntie, not even my aunts, but dp is Caribbean and there everyone is uncle and auntie. That is how our dd is now being raised. I recognise that many people think it's a bit declasse, and probably cringe when our dd does it, but to my own surprise I've found that I think it quite charming.

nickytwotimes Mon 20-Jul-09 22:27:21

I like it.
Ds calls most of my friends Auntie.
It was a respect thing when I were a lass. Less formal then Mrs but more formal and affectionate than first name only.

Posey Mon 20-Jul-09 22:27:41

It was common in the neighbourhood when I was growing up. We all called each others mums auntie so-and-so. Not common now.
There is only one person (my oldest best friend) who my children call auntie who isn't.

JoesMummy09 Mon 20-Jul-09 22:27:51

It is very common in the Asian community. I am Auntie JoesMummy to my friend's children.

I also used to work in an area with a large Indian community. Some of my colleagues would refer to clients as Uncle or Auntie.

It is just a way of showing respect to ones elders. If you don't like it just say. I'm sure your friend has just done it to be polite and won't mind if you say "I'd prefer it if your DC would just call me X"

neenztwinz Mon 20-Jul-09 22:28:01

My friend tells her kids to call me Aunty.

But my mum always said 'aunty' etc was for REAL relatives only.

So I don't like it. But it's not the end of the world. I'd never say anything to my friend about it.

fishie Mon 20-Jul-09 22:28:46

it is a bit class and a bit cultural. i think it is also an easy way to signify a close friend of the whole family. don't use it myself, even for real aunts and uncles but we did when i was a child.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Mon 20-Jul-09 22:29:13

class? as in common as muck? or not common as muck? hmm

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 22:29:28

what is a "REAL" relative?? especially these days in the days of 2nd (subsequent marriages), unmarried couples with children, etc etc etc?

UnquietDad Mon 20-Jul-09 22:29:28

I had one or two "Aunties" who were not related to me when I was very little - took me a while to work out the difference between them and my dad's sister!

One thing my mother insists on is DD and DS addressing other adults she knows as "Mr" and "Mrs" whatever, even when they have asked for their first name to be used!

Most of their friends' parents are known to them by their first names - this is fairly normal, isn't it? The only people they call Mr & Mrs are teachers and people they really don't know.

MyCatIsGreebo Mon 20-Jul-09 22:30:01

I called all my mum and dad's friends Auntie and Uncle and my kids are doing the same with my friends. Not aware that it was a class thing (which class would it be btw) or anything just something we did. I rather like it when I get called it and my best friend loves that my dd calls her auntie as none of her actual neices and nephews do.

Ponders Mon 20-Jul-09 22:30:57

Oh no FAQ, it is very much a class thing (or was when I were a lass). I'm surprised it's still so prevalent though (or maybe it's the more exalted circles I move in now wink)

One of the playgroups locally was once run by women who insisted on referring to themselves as Auntie - yuck.

theDreadPirateRoberts Mon 20-Jul-09 22:32:58

Don't know about class or culture (have neither grin) and we didn't have extra aunts and uncles when I was growing up... but... used it with my DS when he was tiny as shorthand for 'this is someone I trust you with rather than a random acquaintance'. So next door was Aunty C (is generally lovely) but upstairs neighbour was D only (bills and coos at children but doesn't actually like them). Does that make sense?

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 22:33:33

yes but which class?

I grew up working class (common as muck type wink) - and called non-relatives Aunty/Uncle.

My mum's cousin is exceedingly middle class (I'd say their family bordering on the upper middle class - they were always known as "the posh ones" in our family unit grin) also use the term Aunty/Uncle .......

piscesmoon Mon 20-Jul-09 22:33:58

I hate it! I insist they use my first name only. I am not their auntie.

slowreadingprogress Mon 20-Jul-09 22:34:13

I hate this too. Still pretty common among ds' classmates it seems and with my DH's family! I don't even like it when people call real relatives auntie or uncle. Seems weird to me.

I like DS to use first names, so long as it's been invited. I like it when kids aren't afraid to do that. It sounds nice and imho it's good for their social skills.

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 22:36:19

I used to use first names as well hmm

"Aunty Joyce" "Uncle David" ("real" relatives)

"Uncle Mike" "Aunty Felicity" ("pretend" relatives)

Ponders Mon 20-Jul-09 22:39:24

Working/aspiring middle I think, FAQ grin

My parents' friends were eg Uncle Bob or Auntie Evelyn - calling them Bob or Evelyn was too familiar apparently, but calling them Mr Smith or Miss Jones was too formal - that was fine for a child but when I got to be about 18 I couldn't bring myself to call them anything.

theDreadPirateRoberts Mon 20-Jul-09 22:40:34

But don't you think it's a useful way of delineating the people that you want your DC to trust? Having lots of people around and not wanting to have to spell out which ones you'd rather they run to if you're not there/they wander away on the village green etc? Or just me being PFB?

slowreadingprogress Mon 20-Jul-09 22:41:36

exactly ponders

my SIL still calls people 'auntie so and so' and she's rising 40 with kids of her own. Just sounds so odd that she can't just address a fellow adult by their name...

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 22:41:56

oh no - my "posh" part of the family are most definitely not just aspiring to be middle - they ARE middle class - always have been, always will be and they've always done it too (one of the few things the 2 sides of the family seem to have in common grin)

neenztwinz Mon 20-Jul-09 22:42:11

Real Aunties = mum's sisters/dad's sisters
Real uncles - mum's brothers/dad's brothers

Not sure what was so outrageous about that.


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