Should my baby be taught to call her stopmom "mom"?

Jessica - posted on 12/11/2012 ( 11 moms have responded )

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When I was pregnant with my daughter my husband left me for his girlfriend. Our divorce became official when my daughter was 7 months old. She is now 13 months old and my ex is getting remarried this month and his girlfriend/fiance is now expecting a baby in 3 months. I have full physical custody of our daughter and she visits her father for 24 hours every other weekend. I have recently found out that they are referring to my ex's fiance as mommy, mama, etc to my daughter. My ex keeps telling me that he isn't "teaching" our daughter what to call his fiance, that when our daughter is old enough she will decide what she wants to call her. I feel that because she is so young and just learning to talk that when he refers to his fiance as mama, he is teaching our daughter to call her that. I have asked that our of respect for me, they only refer to his fiance by her name when they are talking to our daughter, but that seems to be like talking to a brick wall. Am I off base by requesting this? Any suggestions?

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Dove - posted on 12/11/2012

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But S.J., you could demand it all you want and it's not going to do a darn thing except tick off the ex... which will make him do MORE things JUST to get under your skin. Which is Holly's point. Making demands and ticking off the ex only hurts the kids more in the long run.

Lacye - posted on 12/11/2012

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I think the main thing right now is that it hurts your feelings and that is understandable. If it is your daughter that is initiating the "mama" thing, then it's not as bad. With her being so young, she doesn't understand but when she is at her father's house, that is how she sees your ex's fiance. If he all of a sudden starts calling her by her name and telling her not to call his fiance that, it could actually confuse her in the end.



In all honesty, I don't know what you are going through. I am a mother and a stepmother. I know about how I would feel if I was in your situation but I can't fully comprehend it because I've never been in that situation. I can tell you, however, on the side of a stepchild myself that if you make a big deal about it, in the end it's going to cause more stress on your daughter than you realize. My mother used to throw fits when I called my stepmother "mama" and eventually I stopped but I felt guilty for ever doing it in the first place that it ruined my relationship with my stepmother.

Holly - posted on 12/11/2012

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i think it shouldn't matter.... my brother called my dad "dad" but he knew who his REAL father was... a name is just a name.... as it was once said, a rose, by any other name, smells just as sweet.... and honestly, you can request ANYTHING you want... hell you could request that your baby call stepmom "Godzilla", you have that right.... but what the baby's father decides to teach his baby to call his fiance, is none of your business

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S. - posted on 12/11/2012

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I see your point dove but there's no way on earth I could just ignore it and except it,at all. maybe I am the wrong person to comment on this and maybe i would have a different opinion if it was a common thing from were i am from but even the though of it riles me.

Holly - posted on 12/11/2012

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i didn't mean to upset you SJ, i just was saying that the father isn't going to stop just because someone asked him to, and he CERTAINLY wont stop if he was DEMANDED to

S. - posted on 12/11/2012

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Holly I never said she did I said "I personally would" and if I was in that situation I would! Regardless of what rights people thought i had. i think it is so disrespectful to teach a child to call someone else mum/dad when that parent is active in the child's life, if I was in that situation I would feel like it was such a kick in the teeth on the fathers part. Where I live it isn't the done thing at all.

Firebird - posted on 12/11/2012

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Coaching a child to call someone else mom is definitely morally wrong. That is something they should be allowed to decide for themselves without adults interfering by prompting them to do it. But unfortunately, there's nothing you can do about it. Sorry.

Dove - posted on 12/11/2012

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You aren't off base and your feelings are 100% justifiable. Unfortunately, as Holly mentioned, you can't dictate what they do or do not do in their home. She is young now, but she will KNOW who her mom is... and as long as dad and stepmom are loving and taking proper care of her when she is w/ them... THAT is what really matters.



I'm sorry though. It's a tough thing for YOU to deal with regardless.

Holly - posted on 12/11/2012

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she has no right demanding what goes on at another person's house.... she can tell the child to refer to her as "insert name" when at her house... but she can not dictate what rules a father sets for his child.

S. - posted on 12/11/2012

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Personally I would be very annoyed and demand they stop and teach the child to call her by her name,she's not your child's mama there for why should she have the right to be called it. I also think a step father shouldn't be called dad either. If the child's bio parents aren't in the picture it's a different story and the child should choose IMO

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