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Should I let my daughter call her SM "mommy"?

I'm 27 and been divorced for a year and me and my ex have 50/50 custody, switching weekly, of our 4yr old daughter...we can talk and get along decently and I've come to accept SM in my daughter's life(they're not married yet though). Recently she's started calling her mommy and they said they didn't encourage or discourage it. I feel like she has a stronger bond with them because she still gets to see them during my week but with my work I don't see her during their week. I'm extremely hurt by this and don't know if my daughter's completely understanding the difference here. I'd rather just have her call the SM by her name and I'm not sure if she's chosen "mommy" on her own. Am I being selfish? Do I just let it go or do we try to stop her from calling the SM mommy... I don't want to confuse her anymore but I also want my daughter to understand who the MOM is...please help!

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Asked by kim6661 at 11:13 PM on Feb. 9, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (14)
  • I think that it can be confusing for her because of her age, that maybe it's best if she calls the SM by her name. I love my SM very much and consider her a mother to me as well as my own mom but out of resepct for my mom I call her by her own name.

    Answer by bubblycute at 11:16 PM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • I would not be okay with that at all! I would not make my daughter feel bad, just explain to her. Something like, "being your Mommy is the most precious thing in the world. It is so special to me that I don't want to share it with anyone else. It is good that you love _______, but she is not your Mommy." Maybe suggest a variation of SM's name. Something special that just your daughter calls her.

    Besides, she's not even her SM yet if they are not married! That will be real confusing to your little girl if they break up and she gets another new "Mommy" six months down the line! My heart goes out to you-- I would not cope well with a situation like this! God Bless!

    Answer by Mishelly728 at 11:23 PM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • You are not selfish. This would be hard for anyone. I don't think I could handle it. I agree with the first post on calling her by her first name. That is what I called my step father. My best friend is a step mom and the kids call her MJ. Her name is Jennifer and it stands for moma jennifer. Maybe they could make up a name. Good luck and God bless you.

    Answer by jepelican at 11:24 PM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • i think 'mommy *insert name here*' is okay, but she can only have one MOMMY

    Answer by aliciatron at 11:27 PM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • That's a tough call. I would feel hurt by it, too, if I were you. I'd believe that your DD just came up with it herself, though. I've always called my step-dad "Dad" and I think it hurt my bio-dad, but I didn't know it when I was a kid and started calling him that. Your daughter probably just sees her acting in ways that a mother would- which is probably a good thing- and she's too young to understand the technicalities of it. Honestly, do what you feel comfortable doing. If it really bothers you, try talking to your Ex and the SM. Don't accuse them of encouraging it or anything, just tell them that it breaks your heart to hear your daughter call someone else "Mommy." If you're open and honest about it maybe they'll feel compelled to encourage her to call SM by her first name. I don't see why they wouldn't if you have an amicable relationship. It's worth a shot, you'd just have to approach it delicately! Good luck!

    Answer by winkie_pinkie at 11:31 PM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • Well, first of all, if they're not married, then she is NOT a SM - she's the dad's girlfriend. No, it's not okay to call the girlfriend mommy - sorry, but as a BM, that's kind of sacred soil as long as you are still involved in her life and taking care of her. Just because you don't have the 24/7 time with her doesn't make you any less her mommy. Talk to your ex and SM (if you have good relationships with both) about this and try to find out why your daughter is calling her mommy. I wouldn't encourage mommy{name} either, simply because she is NOT. When talking to your daughter, just gently remind her that her dad's GF is called {name} and that you are still her mommy - God chose you to be her mommy, not GF. Sorry, but this is a sensitive subject with me since I'm dealing with this myself, except they encourage it and won't hear a word otherwise from me or my son, and they only see him EOW.

    Answer by JPsMommy605 at 12:35 AM on Feb. 10, 2009

  • I would feel hurt if my son called anyone else mommy but your daughter probably wouldn't even understand b/c she is so young. On one hand you are her mommy (and only mommy) and on the other hand she must like her SM enough to be calling her that. At 4 years old she probably just sees her being the mommy role in that household so thats just what she knows to call her. If SM sees your child as much as you do, you want them to have the best relationship possible b/c she is a second mommy to your daughter. Like someone above stated, maybe she can call her mommy (insert name here). That's a difficult situation to have to deal with.

    Answer by Mommy0425 at 1:04 AM on Feb. 10, 2009

  • Thing is the choice is not's your daughters. At the age of 4 she really would not understand if SM asked her not to call her mommy....she would probably associate that with SM not loving her. For your daughters well being you should put your feelings aside and let your daughter call her whatever she is comfortable calling her.

    Answer by megmckn at 4:38 AM on Feb. 10, 2009

  • My son was 11 months old when my DH and I got together and at 18 months he stopped calling him by his first name and started calling him Daddy no matter how much we corrected him he insisted that was his Daddy. His BF had terrible fits over it and was so mean to DS about it that it became a huge problem between them! As DS got older he separated them by DH being his daddy and BF being his father. The point is that kids see the female who cares for them as Mommy and the male who cares for them as Daddy. You should try to get her to call her Mommy ______(Sm's first name) but if your Dd really wants to call her Mommy she will.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:27 AM on Feb. 10, 2009

  • Actually, the choice is hers. I'm pretty sure there can be serious issues with someone else being called Mommy, if the real mother doesn't approve. No, your daughter should not be calling dad's current girlfriend Mommy. I called my stepmother mom, BUT we got taken away from my mother for neglect and never saw her, so she became my mother, and still is, to this day. You are still very much in your daughters life and her ONLY MOMMY!!! I like what Mishelly said about explaining it to her. I bet if you told her how special you feel to be her mommy and it makes you very sad that she is calling someone else that, she would probably stop. Children may be young, but they understand a lot more than they are given credit for once someone takes the time to explain things to them. Good Luck and No you are not selfish . . . AT ALL.

    Answer by BridgetC140 at 1:26 PM on Feb. 10, 2009

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