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

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

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!