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What to Call a "Grandma" Who Doesn't Feel Old

What to Call a "Grandma" Who Doesn't Feel Old

What to Call a "Grandma" Who Doesn't Feel Old

Roe M., a new mom, says her own mother is excited to have a grandchild, but less so about being called 'Grandma.' "I'm looking for an alternate name to call my mom other than the usual ‘Grand mom,"  she says, and it turns out she's not alone. Whether it's that they are a more active generation, for whom the moniker "Grandma" conjures the wrong image,  or simply that they are more individualistic than grandmothers of yore, many moms  find themselves casting about for alternative names for the generation that preceded them.

For many, the answer is simple: If a grandma doesn’t want to be called by that title, then as Rachelle W. suggests to grandmas, “let them call you your [real] name.”

Some families choose this path for convenience's sake, as Andrea explains: "My children call my mother-in-law 'Grandma Chris,' only because they have so many Grandmas. My ex in-laws are Grandma Brenda and Grandpa Chris. Then there is my grandmother, who all the great grandkids call Grandma Choochoo."


In some cases, Circle of Moms members suggest their children use "Grandma" and then the grandparent's last name. As a member named Amy explains, "My kids call my husband's parents 'Grandmom Brown' and 'Grandpop Brown."

But a more creative approach to naming that special person in your children's lives seems to be increasingly popular. Here, members share three good strategies for what to call— oh you know, the one formerly known as "Grandma."


1. Let Your Child Create The Name

Heather M. was intent on having her kids call her mom “Mema,” until her son decided to create his own variations. ”I say let him develop his own name for grandma,” says Heather M. Her son’s creations: “Mamam,” and “Mamee.”

Sherri C. says her daughter goes for the short and sweet name she created for her grandma. “She calls her grandmother ‘G Ma,” she says. "My kids' grandmother is called "Granna" and she loves it," says Trish.  "My nephew couldn't say Grandma and it came out Granna and it stuck. A younger version of Grandma."

Judith T. says: "Your baby will mispronounce whatever name you try to get her to use. That can become her own personal name for her grandmother. My children called their grandparents (my in-laws) Mum and Pawpaw because that is what my firstborn, their first grandchild, came out with when he tried to say Gramma and Grampa."

Amber's  daughter "is quite imaginative and she changed my husband's parents' grand names on her own. She calls my husband's mother Nama, also another suggestion."


2. Choose an Affectionate Term

If you’re going to come up with a new name for ‘Grandma’ you might as well get creative, suggests Lisbeth R. “Why not a "cutie’" name of your own like Roro, Roey, or Romi?” she asks. Heather N. and Adria H. agree, suggesting “Neenie” and "Glamma," respectively.

Many Circle of Moms members are looking for affectionate terms and have come up with names like “Gammie,” or “Mom-Mom.”  "I came up with Nini (pronouced like knee-knee) [and] she loves it, " says Amber. In a member named Atesha's house, Grandma's name is "GG."

3. Mine Your Ancestry

Many families pick a name based on their ancestry. Angie B.’s kids use the Spanish name “Abuelita,” for their grandma. Sharlene C.’s family uses the Russian word: “My mother-in-law is ‘Baka’ (pronounced Bucka),” she says. “She is Russian and my husband and his brother couldn’t say babushka when they were little, so it has stuck through the generations.” “Nuna,” a German version is the name, is what Faith H.’s kids use. And Natasha D.'s kids call their grandmother 'Oma,” which she says is Dutch.

What do your kids call Grandma?

Image Source: via iStockphoto

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

Join The Conversation
ZitaHernandezHaines ZitaHernandezHaines 5 years
My grandson calls me mom-mom. While my kids called their grandmothers g-mom and grammie.
AvisNorby AvisNorby 5 years
I am called Granna by our grandchildren and my best friend is YaYa. We felt we were too young and also wanted something fun and new!
BrandysMom BrandysMom 5 years
I was 42 years old when my eldest child moved in with his common-law wife and her two children. Instant Grandmahood was awesome. When I was 43 my first biological grandchild was born. I started my family young and so did my daughter. We are now awaiting #4. I know that a lot of women think any grandma like name is "old" but I don't agree. When I was growing up I only had one grandmother. She was "Grandma" and so was my mother to my children. When it came time for me to pick my name - those kids have a dozen grandparents - I went with Granny. Yes, Granny. The one name my Grandma would have nothing to do with because it made her sound old. She even refused to be called it on her 100th birthday!! I love it. People can think I'm old all they want why my grandkids talk about their "Granny." I'm 49 now - far from "old" - it's a name I have fun with. There are two other good reasons to take on "Granny"; First, you know that no other grandma will want it. Second, if you've seen the movie "Hoodwinked" you know how awesomely cool a Granny can be!
SheilaCaldwell SheilaCaldwell 5 years
I am called Mimi and I love it!
AndreaAshmore83459 AndreaAshmore83459 5 years
My Mum is Welsh so my daughter calls her 'Nain' (pronounced Nine like the number). It's lovely because living in England, there's not too many of them about x
AishaMatthewsAAlkebuLan AishaMatthewsAAlkebuLan 5 years
I love seeing all the different variations of grandma....My son call all grandmothers, including ones that are not his "BigMa".
BarbaraRogenmoser BarbaraRogenmoser 5 years
I am a "young" grandma and didn't want an "old" name. My grand daughter calls me Ya Ya; the Greek version of grandma! I'm also from Louisiana so it is perfect...and sound so cute when my sweetie pie calls me that!
MichelleFeby MichelleFeby 5 years
My stepson calls his 3 grandmoms Mimi, Grandma and Gram. Friends of mine use G-Mom, Nona and Nana, My kids called my mother Mom-Mom.
JoAnnWilliams51766 JoAnnWilliams51766 5 years
I don't understand grandparents who don't want to be called grandma, or granny, or whatever. I am 49 with 1 grandchild and i love the title Grandma!!
CoMMember13626970181179 CoMMember13626970181179 5 years
When we were teaching my son relationships, it was your Mommy is "Mary", your Daddy is "Barry", Mommy's Daddy is "Grandpa" and "Sid", Mommy's Mommy is "Oh Mother" said in a tone of exasperation. I expect that's what I will be called in time LOL
KoreenLeeman KoreenLeeman 5 years
My daughter and grandson live with me. Since my kids call me Mom he started calling me MaMa and his Mother of course is Mommy.
ValRees ValRees 5 years
I'm called "Granny Val" by my grandchildren and "Val" if they need me quick! My husband has the Welsh version of Grand dad "Tad-ci" and "Ci" when they need him in a hurry!
CoMMember13615177809414 CoMMember13615177809414 5 years
My parents are Grammy and Grumpy to my kids and my in-laws are MeMe and PawPaw...we always get a laugh when we tell someone the kids call my dad Grumpy!
GinaHarsh GinaHarsh 5 years
My grandma on my dad's side was Noni (pronounced Know-Knee), her sister (our great aunt) was Dodi (Doe-Dee), and her mom (our great grandma) was Mimi. After Great Grandma passed (years before my kids were born), my dad suggested my mom be called Mimi after his grandma, a HUGE honor for my mother and easy for my kids to say. It stuck and it's cute!
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