Don’t Call Me Grandma!

By the time I had my children, my siblings had already had theirs. That means that our parents “grandparent” names had already been chosen by older cousins. It was “Papa” for my dad and “Grandma” for my Mom. We’ve since seen such excellent variations of “Grandma The Ham” and “Grandma Stinky” for my mom. The “Stinky” makes no sense if you know my obsessively clean mother but it’s something my oldest came up with. Ham? Well, my niece wanted to distinguish my mom (American) from her other grandmother (Canadian). That Grandma is “Grandma Apple.” Actually, why am I even bothering to try to explain this?

On my husband’s side, it’s just “Grandma” and “Grandpa” although my mother-in-law has been gunning for hers to be replaced by “Tu-Tu.” I think that’s what they call grandmas in Hawaii (where my husband was born). She’s the one who alerted me to the latest trend: Grandmothers repudiating the name “Grandma” because they think it makes them seem old.

And apparently it’s a real thing because the New York Times style section has a whole thing on it. Blythe Danner is attempting to get her grandchildren to call her “Woof.” Goldie Hawn prefers “Glam-ma.”

Baby Boomers. Sigh.

My parents and in-laws seem secure enough in themselves that they don’t worry about typical grandparent names. But crazy grandparent names are cool, too. Let us know if you’ve heard any better than “Woof.” Actually, all grandparent names are better than “Woof.”

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