Post # 1
My niece was born a few months ago, and my Mother-In-Law chose “Ammi” (pronounced “ah-me”) as her “grandma” name. At first, I just thought it was unusual, but it wasn’t my place to comment. Fast-forward a few months…now we’re expecting. We all were having dinner together as a family, and after hearing my Mother-In-Law say “Ammi” and “Mommy” together in the same sentence, I realized just how much they sound alike–way too much for my taste. My SIL realized it, too…and made the comment to Darling Husband and me, “Oh, no, baby is going to say ‘Ammi’ before ‘Mommy’…and I will cry.” Our Mother-In-Law is watching both babies while we work, so yes, this is quite potentially a BIG issue!
I personally don’t mind being “Momma” to my baby, but I have a feeling Mother-In-Law will still refer to me as “Mommy.” Am I making too big of a deal about this?
Post # 3
I really don’t see this as a huge deal. The baby could say a number of things before “mommy”. Since she has already been doing it for a while with your niece I would just let it go.
Post # 4
My 11 month old daughter is saying the words dog, ear and cracker so far. Has never said “mommy” yet. I don’t think you should worry about this.
Post # 5
I’ve never heard “Ammi” before. Is this a name for grandma in a specific culture? If so, I’d probably try to let it go. However, if your Mother-In-Law made the name up, I’d tactfully bring up the resemblance to “Mommy”.
Post # 6
I can see why these are thoughts, but in the grand scheme of things, its a small issue. Its just as likely she could say baba or other word for bottle, doggie, dada, etc. as her first word. And as soon as she is babbling away it wont matter what you two are called, you will each have your own special role.
You could ask Darling Husband to ask his mom if its OK if your child calls her “such and such”. Just have it picked out already. If she asks why, just say the two names are little to close and are afraid it would be confusing the first year for your child. If she pushes back, let it drop.
Post # 7
My maternal relatives have made up names that are intentionally easy for babies to say and are close to “mama”. My aunt is Meme and grandma is Dama.
First words will be Mama not Mommy anyway. By the time she says Mommy, she will be able to differentiate Ammi.
Post # 8
@AprilJo2011: It is the name for grandma in some culture…she told my Brother-In-Law and SIL when she picked it out, but they’ve since forgotten. Googling it really isn’t giving me anything concrete. I don’t think it’s linked to any heritage that Mother-In-Law identifies with, though.
Post # 9
My Future Sister-In-Law runs a daycare from her home, her daycare kids have a tendancy to call her “momma or mommy” while in her care, not due to anything she has done, just because its easier for them to associate her taking care of them during the daytime with their mothers caring for them the rest of the time. Its more of a comfort thing to them. I don’t think you should worry about it, your child may say “dada” before momma or mommy, they tend to say the word most often heard on a regular basis thats esy enough to pronounce, unless your Mother-In-Law is with them 24/7 trying to get them to say ammi then you have nothing to worry about, you can’t control what they end up saying first.
Post # 10
In my experience, kids usually end up picking their own name for loved ones. We tried to get our daughter to say “Grandma” and “Grandpa” with my in laws, but she calls Mother-In-Law by something completely made up and Father-In-Law by his first name.
With my parents we tried to get her to say “Grammy” and she calls my mom “Mimi” and my father “Da”.
Don’t worry about it yet, it’s just going to happen in it’s own organic way.
Post # 11
I know that Indian muslims and Pakistanis use Ammi (pronounced umm-me) to refer to their mothers and sometimes grandmothers. I would personally let it go though especially if she will be watching your children simply because I think you will need to pick your fights and down the road I’m sure there will be more important concerns.
Post # 12
The baby will name the grandmother. My mom wanted to be called MiMi when my first nephew was born. He called her Jojo (her name is joann). My daughter calls her (to her dismay) calls her gokgok (I have no idea…)
My daughter said “mama” at ten(ish) months and at 16 months now says mommy. It takes a while. Daddy, dog, ball, and cheese did not take a while. LOL.
Post # 13
I would just refer to her as grandma and then when you child is old enough he/she will call her whatever she decided. My aunt wanted to be Grandma and her first grandchild chose Mima, but her 7 other grandchildren call her a version of Grandma. So not all grandkids have to call them the same. If your Mother-In-Law says anything just say I like Grandma a little better.
Post # 14
I actually think your child is more likely to say “Dada” first anyway, so I wouldn’t worry too much over what names comes out first–it has to do with how kids learn to form syllables and speak and not their relative closeness to you. I wouldn’t worry too much about this.
Post # 15
I just don’t get what’s wrong with saying “grandma”? My grandma tried to get me to call her “nana” when I was a kid, but even as a little kid I was too embarassed by that name to call her that.When I was 4, I told her that only babies can’t say “grandma”.
DH’s grandma tried for “gaga” and he can’t stand saying that either. She still wants him to say Gaga, but he ends up just not calling her anything and not addressing her at all.
Post # 16
@PinkMagnolia: I don’t quite get it either–I think maybe it’s a regional thing. When I asked my mom if she wanted a specific grandma name, her response was, “And what the hell is wrong with Grandma?” I know most of my family and friends feel the same way. I’m okay with some variance in grandma names (Mimi and Nana, for example), but a lot of what I’m hearing these days is…just not my taste. I can even understand using something from your heritage–for example, my family is very German, so if my mom wanted the baby to call her Oma, that would be fine. But, again, that’s my personal opinion, and not every one else feels the same way.
@bearlove: Oh, I know “dada” usually comes first, and “mama” before “mommy.” Still…I don’t know…it just kinda rubs me the wrong way. Oh, well.
@MAlove: Interesting tidbit on the pronunciation…hmm. I wonder if Mother-In-Law knows that, or just assumed pronunciation based on the spelling–I’m willing to bet the latter.
Everyone else–okay, I’ll put on my big girl pants and deal. I really don’t think she’s noticed the sound-alike factor, to be honest. I’ll just use Mama/Momma for myself (which is actually what I call my mother, and Darling Husband prefers over Mommy), and if Mother-In-Law insists on referring to me as Mommy, I can gently correct her. If she asks, I’ll just say Ammi and Mommy are too close for my preference, so I chose Momma…if, if, IF it comes to that, she’s generally gracious enough to take the clue. Otherwise, I’ll try to let it go. I know, it’s crazy that I’ve thought it out this much, but I’m terrified my snarkiness and lack of filter at times will get the best of me.