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Need honest opinions on MIL disagreement!

Posted by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 1:32 AM
  • 96 Replies

Let me give some background information first off. Within the last two and a half years, my daughter has lost both of her poppas, my father to suicide in april 2010 and my father's father to cancer in november 2012. Those were her only grandfathers since my husband has never had anything to do with his paternal side. Anyways, my MIL recently married a man in July of 2012 that she hadn't even known a full year yet. To the current issue at hand, my MIL informs me tonight on the phone that we need to give her new husband a new name besides Mr. and then his name, to be called by her grandkids. Something like peepaw, pappi, you get the idea. Well, I informed her that what they call him is fine considering he is not their grandpa and has not earned the right to be called by a name representative of a grandfather. Yes, I was slightly harsh, and my reasoning is a little selfish since I had always envisioned my dad and grandfather in the picture. Anyways, she called me rude for having that opinion, then proceeded to try and guilt trip me into changing my opinion by saying her new husband doesn't feel like part of the family because the kids call him Mr. Name. I simply told her I'm sorry but our kids will not be referring to her husband as anything other than what he has been referred to for the last year. Frankly, I do not like the man, he is in his 60s and rather old school, so he tries to undermind my authority when around (big pet peeve, Im the parent, I'll parent my child, stay the heck out of it) he is a major know it all, and I don't trust him alone with my daughter therefore the two weeks he is in town, she doesn't spend the night there. Ever really... Am I justified in refusing to make my kids to call him by a different, more grandfatherly name? I will try to keep an open mind that some will not agree with my train of thought. 

by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 1:32 AM
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Replies (1-10):
MaddiesMama09
by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 1:47 AM
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Honestly, if he hasn't been around very long and your children haven't been given a chance to get to know him like a grandfather yet, then I'm with you. Perhaps you will change your mind as more time passes but it seems a little soon for that.
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1likeme
by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 1:54 AM
3 moms liked this
She can kick rocks. He is Mr, whatever the fuck you want to call him. Your child your choice. There are two valid reasons 1, you don't like him 2, he has not established any sort of positive relationship within the family. Say no, mean no and don't worry about it.
grannie_kel
by Bronze Member on Dec. 2, 2012 at 10:40 AM
3 moms liked this

To me it sounds a little petty.  Does it really matter what your children call him?  Definitely not worth starting a family issue over.  You said yourself that your reasoning is a little selfish on your part, but it is not this man's fault that you no longer have your father or grandfather.  If you open the door a little and let him in, he could turn  out to be just the grandparent that your kids need and deserve, but that can't happen if your close the door over something so simple as what he will be called.  Every kid deserves to have a grampa, even if he is not perfect.  It sounds like your grandfather made a positive impact in your life...give your children the same opportunity.  There are times we have to bite our tongues for the good of the family. 

MnMsMomma19
by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 11:14 AM

I appreciate your opinion, however, I disagree that it is a petty issue. The term grandpa or any name of the sort is something that is EARNED over years. It isn't just a name contrary to what some believe. How can I be expected to ask my children to call a man I BARELY know that my MIL has been married to for only five months and has only known for a year and three months a name representative of a grandpa... He is out of town for half the month working, so we really do not know this person well enough to address him as anything other than Mr. Name. I refuse to just open the door to my family for just anyone, it has to be earned, my trust, so on and so forth. He has not done that. My daughter knows who her grandpas were, unfortunately, my son who I am 9 months pregnant with will never know his grandpa's for himself. My husband grew up without any grandpa's and he has turned into a wonderful man. So contrary to what you think, my children will be just fine growing up without a grandpa. The man is not their grandfather nor has he EARNED the privilege to be called as such. If its just a name to be handed out to anyone who comes and goes into a family, what meaning would it hold for the ones who have always been there and done all they could with their grandchildren? Grannie Kel, wouldn't that in a way demean your face value of being called Grannie?  Trust me for the last 61/2 years I have bit my tongue so much regarding my MIL I'm surprised I still have one, I refuse to be a doormat on an subject I feel VERY strongly about.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 on Dec. 2, 2012 at 11:38 AM
My mom remarried but before my kids were born. The called him Harry or grandpa Harry. My mom was grandma Harry, lol. They named him and made up the names, not us. FYI, my mom met him before my dad had been dead a year. They were married 5 years later. We were very happy for my mom. I gave my step dad fathers day card "to my stepdad". It is not taking away from my dad at all. I was super close to my dad. He died very suddenly from a heart attack.
I see many kids that do not embrace step parents when they are grown. Also he was never a grandfather before and was an awesome one to my kids and my brothers kids.
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Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 on Dec. 2, 2012 at 11:41 AM
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You sound so bitter and rude.


Quoting MnMsMomma19:

I appreciate your opinion, however, I disagree that it is a petty issue. The term grandpa or any name of the sort is something that is EARNED over years. It isn't just a name contrary to what some believe. How can I be expected to ask my children to call a man I BARELY know that my MIL has been married to for only five months and has only known for a year and three months a name representative of a grandpa... He is out of town for half the month working, so we really do not know this person well enough to address him as anything other than Mr. Name. I refuse to just open the door to my family for just anyone, it has to be earned, my trust, so on and so forth. He has not done that. My daughter knows who her grandpas were, unfortunately, my son who I am 9 months pregnant with will never know his grandpa's for himself. My husband grew up without any grandpa's and he has turned into a wonderful man. So contrary to what you think, my children will be just fine growing up without a grandpa. The man is not their grandfather nor has he EARNED the privilege to be called as such. If its just a name to be handed out to anyone who comes and goes into a family, what meaning would it hold for the ones who have always been there and done all they could with their grandchildren? Grannie Kel, wouldn't that in a way demean your face value of being called Grannie?  Trust me for the last 61/2 years I have bit my tongue so much regarding my MIL I'm surprised I still have one, I refuse to be a doormat on an subject I feel VERY strongly about.


kagegirl
by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 11:53 AM

And you just don't get it. If she would not be expected to make her kids call a new husband "Dad" How can she be expected to just make them call him a derivitaive of grandpa??? That seems silly. 

OP, personally, in the interest of compromise, I would allow the children to call him by his first name, and when they are ready to call him something more endearing, they will, of their own accord. I recently remarried, and my 4 year old has taken to calling my husband Daddy. Of her own free will. Because she feels he IS her daddy, KWIM? If it is in their heart to call him something more, then they will. If not, then they should not be forced and your MIL is wrong. 

Quoting Anonymous:

You sound so bitter and rude.


Quoting MnMsMomma19:

I appreciate your opinion, however, I disagree that it is a petty issue. The term grandpa or any name of the sort is something that is EARNED over years. It isn't just a name contrary to what some believe. How can I be expected to ask my children to call a man I BARELY know that my MIL has been married to for only five months and has only known for a year and three months a name representative of a grandpa... He is out of town for half the month working, so we really do not know this person well enough to address him as anything other than Mr. Name. I refuse to just open the door to my family for just anyone, it has to be earned, my trust, so on and so forth. He has not done that. My daughter knows who her grandpas were, unfortunately, my son who I am 9 months pregnant with will never know his grandpa's for himself. My husband grew up without any grandpa's and he has turned into a wonderful man. So contrary to what you think, my children will be just fine growing up without a grandpa. The man is not their grandfather nor has he EARNED the privilege to be called as such. If its just a name to be handed out to anyone who comes and goes into a family, what meaning would it hold for the ones who have always been there and done all they could with their grandchildren? Grannie Kel, wouldn't that in a way demean your face value of being called Grannie?  Trust me for the last 61/2 years I have bit my tongue so much regarding my MIL I'm surprised I still have one, I refuse to be a doormat on an subject I feel VERY strongly about.




MnMsMomma19
by on Dec. 2, 2012 at 11:59 AM

 We are talking about my MIL, not my mother. My MIL is the one requesting a name change for him, not my daughter or any of the other grandchildren. He has only been a member of the family for a little over 4 months, he has not earned anything but Mr. Name. My husband doesn't see him as anything more than his mom's new husband, he agrees he is not a step-father, step-father-in-law, or a step grandfather. We have the right to feel that way, we are responsible for the people who are allowed an influence in our chilldren's lives, if one day he has earned the name grandpa or something like it then they have that choice when they're older. But while they are children we as their parents make those calls. I am glad your family found peace and happiness with another male figure in the family. Not everyone is able to accept that life change, namely myself.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 on Dec. 2, 2012 at 12:05 PM
Wow, what a compromise. Your kids will feed off your bitterness also. Personally I would let the kids takr the lead and don't ever talk bad about him in front of the kids.


Quoting kagegirl:

And you just don't get it. If she would not be expected to make her kids call a new husband "Dad" How can she be expected to just make them call him a derivitaive of grandpa??? That seems silly. 

OP, personally, in the interest of compromise, I would allow the children to call him by his first name, and when they are ready to call him something more endearing, they will, of their own accord. I recently remarried, and my 4 year old has taken to calling my husband Daddy. Of her own free will. Because she feels he IS her daddy, KWIM? If it is in their heart to call him something more, then they will. If not, then they should not be forced and your MIL is wrong. 


Quoting Anonymous:

You sound so bitter and rude.





Quoting MnMsMomma19:

I appreciate your opinion, however, I disagree that it is a petty issue. The term grandpa or any name of the sort is something that is EARNED over years. It isn't just a name contrary to what some believe. How can I be expected to ask my children to call a man I BARELY know that my MIL has been married to for only five months and has only known for a year and three months a name representative of a grandpa... He is out of town for half the month working, so we really do not know this person well enough to address him as anything other than Mr. Name. I refuse to just open the door to my family for just anyone, it has to be earned, my trust, so on and so forth. He has not done that. My daughter knows who her grandpas were, unfortunately, my son who I am 9 months pregnant with will never know his grandpa's for himself. My husband grew up without any grandpa's and he has turned into a wonderful man. So contrary to what you think, my children will be just fine growing up without a grandpa. The man is not their grandfather nor has he EARNED the privilege to be called as such. If its just a name to be handed out to anyone who comes and goes into a family, what meaning would it hold for the ones who have always been there and done all they could with their grandchildren? Grannie Kel, wouldn't that in a way demean your face value of being called Grannie?  Trust me for the last 61/2 years I have bit my tongue so much regarding my MIL I'm surprised I still have one, I refuse to be a doormat on an subject I feel VERY strongly about.





Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 on Dec. 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM
Sounds like your dh needs to not be so bitter either.


Quoting MnMsMomma19:

 We are talking about my MIL, not my mother. My MIL is the one requesting a name change for him, not my daughter or any of the other grandchildren. He has only been a member of the family for a little over 4 months, he has not earned anything but Mr. Name. My husband doesn't see him as anything more than his mom's new husband, he agrees he is not a step-father, step-father-in-law, or a step grandfather. We have the right to feel that way, we are responsible for the people who are allowed an influence in our chilldren's lives, if one day he has earned the name grandpa or something like it then they have that choice when they're older. But while they are children we as their parents make those calls. I am glad your family found peace and happiness with another male figure in the family. Not everyone is able to accept that life change, namely myself.


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