Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Grandma's penchant for calling granddaughter nicknames riles mom

Carolyn Hax on

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Hi, Carolyn:

My mother-in-law, "Linda," has been calling my daughter Tootsie as a nickname since the day she was born. I have no idea where this nickname came from but it drives me crazy. I have asked her to call her by her given name so she is not confused as she grows older and to avoid possible ridicule from classmates down the road. She tried to catch herself at first but now continues to call her Tootsie even with gentle reminders.

We see her about once a week, plenty of chances to correct herself, but she continues with this nickname and sometimes even comes up with other crazy ones that are really bizarre.

How do I get her to stop without causing too much tension?

-- Not a Fan of Tootsie

--Sponsored Video--

OMG. Let the woman call her grandchild what she wants.

"[S]o she is not confused as she grows older"? You can't have typed that with a straight face.

I'm not sure there's a person in the roiling seven billion-plus who didn't get nicknamed as a kid, and I'm reasonably confident all of them know their given names. And if there are some pet-nameless, they probably wished they'd had one because nicknaming is one of the universal currencies of affection.

Unless of course it's blatant ridicule, which Tootsie is not.


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