Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Stepdad: World's Most Awkward Word?

 The word "stepdad" or "stepfather" doesn't roll off the tongue. Stepfather. Stepdaddy. Whatever. It's nothing like those cute syllabic words like mama or dada. (And okay, fair, enough. It's not supposed to be.) Could you imagine a one-year-old lovingly coo, "step!" Entirely unromantic. Robotic sounding, actually. Worse, it's connected to one of the greatest film villains, Maleficient. Snow White's stepmother.

Step. Blech.

As I've mentioned, Elke, at 2, has thrown all parental naming rules to the wind (click here for recap). She calls her biological dad, "Andy."

She calls Jake's dad, C., "Dad." It makes no sense. It makes perfect sense. She is copying her brother. This is his naming convention.

 Jake, on the other hand, has gone through many names for Andy. First it was "babe." (I called Andy babe.) Then it morphed into "My Andy."

Now, he calls him Andy or "Dada."

Yes, it sounds a little young for a 7-year-old to call someone Dada, but I'm sure it'll evolve. It gives us a name that both kids can use. Maybe one day it'll morph into "Da." Sounds very Irish doesn't it? Or Russian, depending how you look at it. Da.


I've read articles about a few kids making up new names for their stepfathers. There's Kate Hudson who calls Kurt Russell "Pa," which I always loved. Children just want to feel included. That we're all connected even though Mommy and Daddy are divorced.

Sometimes you go in alone.

And then you come out together.

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