I thought being called “aunty” was tough.
Then I read an article in the New York Times earlier this month about baby boomers who don’t want to be called grandparents.
“This generation of grandparents takes the whole naming process more seriously than ever,” said Lin Wellford, coauthor of “The New Grandparents Name Book: A Lighthearted Guide to Picking the Perfect Grandparent Name” (ArtStone, 2009). “How many times in your life do you get to name yourself?”
I remember a time when mothers couldn’t wait to be grandparents — and they didn’t seem to care what we called them. I called my paternal grandma (above), “Grams.” And other grandma was just that — “Grandma.”
But times are a-changing.
Actress (and fellow blogger) Gwyneth Paltrow said, while promoting her new cookbook, “My Father’s Daughter” (Grand Central Life & Style), that her mom, actress Blythe Danner, waned to be called Woof by her grandchildren.
Actress Goldie Hawn, mother to Kate Hudson, wrote in her memoir that the name, “Grandma” was “word that had so many connotations of old age and decrepitude.” (She prefers to be called GlamMa.)
Wellford’s book offers 700 options for grandparents, from G-mom to Bubba to “Sonoma and Napa for a more sophisticated set.”
Why can’t we just accept our age — and where that puts us in this world? Hey, I know I’m 36. I’ve moved from “Sistah” to “Aunty” — and I can’t do anything about it. Except whine in a blog, but hey, I’m not in denial!
better Grandma than the alternatives. my cousin’s family tends to procreate at an earlier age than the rest of the family. also, my grandma is still feisty as ever well into her 90th decade. we ran out of names after “grandma”, so my cousin’s kids (and the rest of the generation, now that they’ve arrived) call her “Big Grandma”. now that the next generation is here and starting to talk, I’m not sure what moniker we’re going to settle on.
The other night at my sons graduation, all of my sons friends was calling me uncle, nothing new to me.
I’m off tomorrow and Monday, it’s a long weekend at the beach house! Have a great Memorial Day weekend everyone!
We don’t have much control over what people say about us, like asking a child to bring something to her “grandfather.” We do get some say in how family members address us, so if a guy wants his grandchildren to address him as “dude” or “buddy man” they don’t hurt anyone by obliging.
One of my older brothers was a “true” grandparent at 36… yeah, you read that right, LOL! All of his grandkids now call him Papa (pronounced paw-paw). To me, that sounds even older than Grandpa.
He’s only 55 now, and his oldest grandkid is engaged to be married… soon he’ll be a great-papa! Dunno what it is about his branch of the tree, but they sprout buds early!
I’m Poppop to my grankids and the other kids in the neighbor hood. Wife is Nanny, her mom is MOM-Mom. My Mom, great grandma, is grandmaKind of proud to be a grandparent, feels like I earned something.
you’re 36? oh. i mean awesome! Yes, i agree. if one is cool doesnt matter wht you’re called. Wear your moniker proud! Look it Steven Tyler…dude still looks like a lady (or older lesbian) and is cashing in big time.
Catherine and her “Vovo”.
My aunt was the worst when my cousin bore her first grandchild, from then on she wanted her grandchildren to call her… “girlfriend”. She only has 2 thus far and they’re both teeny boppers now and have only recently been having issues calling her “girlfriend”. They call her that to her face but that’s it. My parents chose to be called Mama and Papa, not quite as “old” as grandma and grandpa, and yet still close to Mom and Dad.