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Addressing the parents of your child's friends - what do yours call them?

(93 Posts)
lisalisa Thu 31-Mar-05 15:36:29

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hunkermunker Thu 31-Mar-05 15:40:27

That does sound very formal to me. DS doesn't call anyone by anything, since he's not quite ayear old, but I'm fairly sure he'll just use first names - mind you, if this woman desperately wants to be called by her title/surname, perhaps it'd be worth ensuring your children do. Make sure she and her children call you by your first name though

Kayleigh Thu 31-Mar-05 15:43:17

I used to have to call my parents friends "Aunty" and "Uncle" and I hated it.
All my kids friends call me "Kayleigh" and my kids 6 and 3 call all their friends mums by their first name.
Think in this situation the woman is being a bit OTT.

Bozza Thu 31-Mar-05 15:44:08

It used to be "xxx's mummy" but now he generally calls them by their christian name. Don't think DS at 4 calls anyone by their surname its all first names for the nursery staff. Oh yes the children are all called by their full names so its "Emily Brown" and "Thomas Smith" not just Emily and Thomas.

I think you could maybe explain to the older ones and hopefully the 3yo would just follow their lead. Think kids do still get confused at 3. Remember DS realising DH and I actually had names and weren't born called mummy and daddy.

lunavix Thu 31-Mar-05 15:44:48

Explain to her that you don't want her or her kids to call you Mrs X (or was it Y ) anymore!

It should work both ways.

Bozza Thu 31-Mar-05 15:44:51

Agree it seems a bit extreme from this woman but don't see what you can do but go along with it.

lisalisa Thu 31-Mar-05 15:46:41

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suzywong Thu 31-Mar-05 15:46:49

if she's really gettingher knickers in a twist then like you say , do your best to get teh kids to comply

Just out of curiosity,what demographic does she fit?


When ds1 was very little I used to refer to my friends and his friends' parents as "daddy X"or "Mama Y" to show him they were friendly and kind and could be trusted IYSWIM

Gobbledigook Thu 31-Mar-05 15:46:50

My kids call my friends and Mums of their friends by their first name - NOT Mrs X, Y or Z.

They refer to 'teachers' (only in pre-school yet but ykwim) as Mrs X.

My children are 4, 2 and 7 months (though ds3 obviously doesn't call anyone anything yet!)

Sounds a bit formal to me to call friends by Mrs X.

bonym Thu 31-Mar-05 15:48:22

We use first names - Mrs so&so does seem overly formal & a bit old-fashioned imo.

dinosaur Thu 31-Mar-05 15:48:41

If it was important to someone, I would do my best to get my kids to comply.

I don't think it would be hard to explain to my DS1 as he gets very cross if anyone calls him by the "wrong" name - no abbreviations, nicknames etc allowed.

Blu Thu 31-Mar-05 15:50:01

All the kids I know call all adult friends by their first names.
Unless she is from a different culture, she sounds quite barmy! And in cultuires (like DP's family) where adults aren't addressed by first name, there is usually a freindly nickname convention - the word for aunty, for e.g. Could you ask her if there is a freindly but 'respectful' term that she would prefer?

LOL at your 3 year old!

Blu Thu 31-Mar-05 15:51:32

But ultimately, i agree with Dino - if it's important to her, try and get them to comply.

If she doesn't exhibit any other barmy characteristics, that is, and you are happy to be a rota mum with her

lisalisa Thu 31-Mar-05 15:53:26

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lunavix Thu 31-Mar-05 15:55:31

I have no idea what a rota mum is but could you get another? I don't like her remarks about your lo's

suzywong Thu 31-Mar-05 15:57:30

that's very interesting

won't say "well of course it's because she's American" as that would be out of order

Anecdotally, in Chinese custom, absolutely everyone you would ever come into contact with as a child as a disticnt pre-fix with a special word: elder brother, mum's sister, dad's younger sister, mother's friends. And no one kicks up about that

sacha3taylor Thu 31-Mar-05 15:57:30

My ds is 5 and he calls his friends parents x's mummy, all except one lady who he insists on calling Mrs x! She quite often says to him "my name is Laura" but he still carries on calling her Mrs x!!!!!

lisalisa Thu 31-Mar-05 16:03:12

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Blu Thu 31-Mar-05 16:08:16

I don't like her innuendos about your kids, either! Your DS sounds hilarious, and most Mum's would have been biting back laughter to hear another child 'mimick' them. It doesn't sound as if he was being rude, just funnily cheeky.

She does sound as if she has v old-fashioned discipline standards, but as long as the rota is working ok, and she is not actually upsetting your kids, can you live with it until a new rota is drawn up?

Twiglett Thu 31-Mar-05 16:09:10

I think that Lunavix made a good point - you should do your best to get your kids to call her Mrs X but only if she gets her kids to call you by your first name (or Aunty LisaLisa whichever you prefer)

In our group everyone refers to other mothers by first name, pre-school teachers are first name too (their choice). My family friend's are first name prefaced by Aunty / Uncle. When we were growing up (orthodox Jewish) it was Aunty / uncle too

I don't know what difference it makes being American - but it certainly isn't British culture nor Orthodox Jewish culture IME to be so formal and I would point that out to her

lisalisa Thu 31-Mar-05 16:13:40

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Keane Thu 31-Mar-05 16:18:45

i call them by their first name

my mum and dad used to call them by mr and mrs

suedonim Thu 31-Mar-05 16:23:06

We use the Xxxx's mummy option or the person's name but I think that you have to go along with this person's choice, really, if that's what she wants. My ds is married to an American Jewish girl and from the time I've spent in the US they are very polite. No one uses 'Sir' or 'Madam' in the UK now but I hear it regularly there, plus older people are often addressed as Mr/Mrs/Miss X.

Slightly to one side, as my children have reached their teens their friends seem to get all embarrassed to use first names so we suddenly become Mr&Mrs. Although having said that, dd1's closest friends have started calling dh and me Mummy and Daddy!!! I can be out somewhere minding my own business when I'll hear a loud MUMMMMMMEEEEEEEEEEE and it'll be one of the teenage hobbits.

Bozza Thu 31-Mar-05 16:23:59

When I was an au pair in America it was the custom for the children to call pre-school teachers, nursery nurses, other adults "Miss LisaLisa" or "Mr Bill" rather than Mr and Mrs Jones (the miss being regardless of marital status).

She sounds very stuffy IMO.

Gwenick Thu 31-Mar-05 16:48:14

I think it's very odd, but if that's what she REALLY wants then try and encourage your kids to do it AS LONG as her's call you by your first name.

DS1 is still at the age where it's just x's mummy - but once he's a bit older then I'll probably teach him first names (unless any object which I can't imagine them doing). As nursery they call the staff by first names (nursery decision).

In DH's culture mothers are called "Amai" (mother) x (name of the child). It's quite a 'social' standing to be a mother.

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