Positively Paula

Stepfamily Name Calling Doesn't Have to Be Negative

Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Have you ever experienced learning or thinking about a person, place, or thing and then suddenly it pops up everywhere around you? That's how I've been feeling since I wrote about stepfamily terms. There is yet another aspect of terms and naming in the stepfamily experience - what to call extended family members. The sooner you tackle this topic, the better! Even seven years into a remarriage, this little, but sometimes awkward situation arises!

I remember the first time my new in-laws visited our home after I was remarried. My teenage son was standing in the kitchen with my mother-in-law and me and I could see he was struggling to get her attention. It dawned on me that he didn't know what to call her. And, I felt awful that I hadn't initiated a discussion earlier (with my son or my mother-in-law) about what my kids were going to call their new step-grandparents.

I jumped in and started the quick conversation, but it felt really awkward to me. I'm not sure how they felt at the time. But, why hadn't I thought of it sooner?

A few weekends ago my husband, son and I visited my stepson who is away at college. (Or, shall I say "our son?" Again, here I go wondering if it would bother anyone, especially my stepson, if I call him "our son" in public. And, this is STILL after being remarried for nearly eight years!) Anyway, my mother joined us for the trip.

My mom, son, and I went in to see my stepson's dorm room. When we entered, he was the perfect gentleman and introduced us to his roommate. He introduced his stepbrother as his "stepbrother," me as "Paula, my stepmom," and then he just paused when it came to my mom. He normally calls her "Miss Andrea."  Again, a little awkward silence...or, maybe it was just my imagination.

I spoke up and said, "This is his step-grandma, my mom, Miss Andrea." Phew! Having an analytic background, I am well aware of my tendency to overthink. But, really, I've been thinking about how well or not we've covered stepfamily names and terms within our family. I know the bottom line is to have good communication and everyone should do what works for them as a family. But, am I the only one still trying to figure all of this out? And, does my stepson even want to refer to my mom as "step-grandma?" I have no idea, but I plan to find out.



Recent Posts


Tags

stepmom family therapist step-grandma wedding invite wording blending Journal for Stepmoms stepfamily issues brady bunch Yaffa Balsam family matters stepfamily advice stepchildren carl delmont Chuck Semich familymoon para-kin.com remarriage journey stepbrother blended family custody battle encore bridal specialist stepfamily names fatherhood late wife's family encore brides separated remarrying bride post divorce second marriages remarriage widowed mediation stepfamily coach remarrying encore bridal dress after divorce wedding invitation stepfamily challenges stepsons stepparenting judge's verdict marriage DIY wedding invitations Northern Virginia Mediation Service divorce stepfamily with a special needs child spouse relationships remarriages marry therapist stepfathers second wedding planning stepfamily terms joint custody stepchild second time around freedmont mortgage divorce mediation remarried with kids Mother's Day step family Stepmoms Toolbox stepmoms-to-be love for grown-ups national stepfamily day foundation weddings and children step-grandparents separation National Stepfamily Day wedding invitations stepdads alimony Garter Brides custody blended families stepfamilies with special needs kids family law attorney family law court relationship questions families stepdad widowhood remarrying brides stepmother United States Blended Family Association merging two families second weddings shared joint custody remarries the garter brides family law judge exes national stepfamily summit carla david design stepparent marrying marriage education stepfamily stepson's USABFA remarry bonus mom child support ex blending families journaling stepfamily relationships custody lawyer mediators father rights divorced stepparents NARME Justice Harvey Brownstone stepkids second wedding encore wedding previous marriages stepdaughter stepfamily support group blended wedding invitation wording children step parent christy borgeld stepfamily life stepfamily experience Stepmom's Toolbox stepfamily counselor co-parenting co-parenting plan Kim Olver second wedding invitations Mrs. Delaware problems in your remarriage stepfamily meeting second honeymoon stepfamily counseling family court RemarriageWorks stepmothers remarried Father's Day stepfather professional mediation stepfamilies stepmotherhood second marriage stepmom's IDEALS of Kentucky blending your credit histories wedding invite United States of America Blended Family Association financial problems stepmoms remarriage works divorcing stepson family

Archive

Tell Us More About Your Second Wedding!

1. How much did you spend on your second wedding?

$0 - 1,000
$1,001 - 5,000
$5,001 - 10,000
$10,001 - 20,000
$20,001 or more

 

Here's What You're Saying

“I find your site extremely helpful and resourceful in dealing with the many and daily issues of parenting, co-parenting and life issues that come along.” –J.P.

“I love the information you all provide. The magazine was so helpful in trying to navigate the remarriage with kids territory. Thank you for all of your information and inspiration you provide.” –K.W.

“Have I mentioned HOW MUCH I love your site?!?!? It's really cool. . . . I'm getting married to a man that has two kiddos, and it's quite a lifestyle change for me!” –M.M.

Win a Copy of
Eat, Drink and Remarry

This is not your mother’s second wedding! Getting married again? Wondering why the planning is harder than you thought it was going to be? Enter to win a copy of Eat, Drink and Remarry by Stacey Tucker!


Tweets from RemarriageWorks!