Parents Who Let Kids Call Them by Their First Names Are Giving Up Something Special

Mom Moment 44

mom shirtI was chatting with another mom friend recently when the topic of kids who call their parents by their first names -- you know, instead of "mom" or "dad." We both agreed that it's sort of cute when little kids fall into the habit accidentally, like a 2-year-old cousin of mine who used to call her dad "Bill." There was just something hilarious about the way her odd choice played into everyday conversation: "And then I went to the park with Mommy and Bill, and then Bill pushed me on the swing, and then Mommy said no ice cream but Bill said okay!"

If you didn't know better, you'd wonder if maybe Mommy wasn't having an affair with this "Bill" character. Anyway, we also agreed that hearing a teen calling her dad "Bill" (or her mom "Kate" or whatever) is a different sort of animal altogether. I'm not sure how I would feel about my 11-year-old, for example, calling me by my first name. On the one hand, what's the big deal?

What difference does it really make? On the other, it's the kind of seemingly trivial thing that can end up meaning so much more.

Some parents I know would take their kid calling them by name as a sign of disrespect, which I guess I understand. But for me, I think it would be more about ... loss. Like being demoted, or something. When you think about it, you're going to call pretty much every single person you meet in your entire life by name. Besides teachers, doctors, dentists, police officers and people in the military or clergy, that is. And even then, there's the possibility of overlap. You might meet more than one Mr. Franklin or Dr. Shapiro over the years ... but in the vast majority of cases, you only get one (maybe two) people designated as Mom or Dad.

More from The Stir: 35 Sweet Alternatives to 'Grandma' & 'Grandpa'

I don't want to miss out on being one of those people, especially when I already am one of those people. If you know what I mean. I had the kids. I am a mom. I am THEIR mom. If the shoe fits, call a spade a spade? Oh, you know what I mean.

Would you let your kids call you by your name?


Image via Jamie/Flickr



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nonmember avatar Cynthia

I call(ed) my Dad by his first name from about 14 on. We worked together in a professional setting and it does not look good to be calling for "Dad" or "Daddy" in such a place. For the most part, when not in a work setting he's still Dad or Grandpa now, but sometimes he still answeres better to his first name. For us, it's not a sign of disrespect, but a sign of respect that goes both ways. I think every situation is different.

redK8... redK8blueSt8

I don't want my kids calling me by my first name. They're not my peers, and they are the only two people in the world who get to call me mom.

I also do not let their friends call me by my name alone either. I'm a big fan of the southern Miss. First-name or Mr. First-name respect sign. So I introduce myself to the kids as Miss Kate, they are not my peers either.

Katy Khan

I agree red.

alway... alwayscurious

I also agree with the first poster. Here in Texas, most children put miss or mr UN front of adult names. I have raised my daughter this way. It bothers me when I meet the occasional child who didn't address me as miss....the lack of that title is reserved for peers, in my southern opinion. :-)

nonmember avatar Stephanie.r.e

When I was teenager and mad at my mom I would call her by her first name to get under her skin or whatever.

I would not let my kids call me by my first name. I do feel that it is a level of disrespect even if they're not mad. It's so special because as the first poster stated they are the only ones who can call me mom : )

StarC... StarCarrillo

It doesnt bother me when my 4yr old calls me by my first name... hes been doing that since he learned how to talk. i taught him that in case he got lost or kidnapped and the cops ask 'whats your moms name' he wont be one of those children who say 'mom'..

Blaze Hazen

I'm southern and I disagree I don't want to be known as "miss____" for the rest of my life. I'm almost 30 and I still call adults from my childhood "miss ___" You can be respectful and still call an adult by their first name only.

Blaze Hazen

On the other h

Blaze Hazen

It just took away al

Caela... CaelanOceanamom

It's not a choice sometimes. I have a friend with 4 kids; the youngest calls her by her first name. She always has; never once called her mom. Every kid is different, if we are truly listening to our kids, what does it matter what they call us? Respect and dignity are earned.

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