'I'm scared it will stick': Grandma insists on calling baby a different name

Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK
Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK 

It's hard enough to know whether to correct people when they accidentally get names wrong.

What is supposed to be done about someone who deliberately calls a new baby by a completely different name... and what if that someone is the baby's grandmother?

It's a dilemma faced by a Mumsnetter, who has asked for advice, furious that her mother calls the baby 'Candy', when her name is actually Cassia.

Titled 'Bleeping mother', she outlines the painful situation.

"My youngest is called Cassia. It's not hard. My 4-year-old calls her Cass or Cassie. Fine. My flipping mother says she can't do "exotic foreign names" and calls her Candy which I HATE!"

If by 'exotic' and 'foreign' she means ancient Roman, then grandma would have to put names such as Camilla, Julia, Antonia and Claudia in the no-go pile, despite them being in common usage in English-speaking countries.

Latinate names are plentiful in the UK, Australia and the US - especially seeing as much of the English language is derived from Latin - so it's a paltry excuse to justify being rude about the child's name.

The truth is, she simply doesn't like it.

So what has the OP done so far to guide her mother towards using Cassia?

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"I've spoken to her about it a billion times (probably an exaggeration but not by much) She laughs it off. I'm scared it will stick," she writes.

"My DH [dear husband] says he will start calling her Jelly if she carries on and she tells him not to be so disrespectful. Any advice apart from the very tempting gaffer tape over the mouth solution?"

No-one could argue the OP has a very difficult situation to address, and people weigh in with their thoughts.

"If she does it again, tell her you are very concerned about her memory loss and think it should be reported to her doctor. Mutter something to your DH in an aside about "senile dementia and care homes". That should straighten her up."

The OP quite likes this.

"Thank you. There's several unsavoury battles going on with her atm. I don't think your tongue in cheek medical diagnosis is far off! Thanks again. Cheered me up no end."

Other people responded in kind.

"Cassia isn't difficult to pronounce. You mum has got a bee in her bonnet for some reason and is being deliberately difficult. Tell her if she can't be bothered to call your child by her name, she won't be seeing her in future and therefore this will no longer be a problem."

"Cassia is a gorgeous name, so much nicer than Candy. She sounds like she likes winding you up."

"Ah that classic British name, Candy...."

"My name is a variant of Cassia and when my mum named me my grandma's response was "that's ridiculous, how will I ever remember to pronounce that". Once my mum told her that if she couldn't even learn to say her own granddaughters name then she wouldn't see me she caught on pretty quickly."

"I'm with the others about roping your 4 year old in. Even just saying to your mother 'My 4 year old can say Cassia. Why do you have such a problem saying it?'"

It seems to be a dead end situation, with the OP not wanting to burn all bridges. She finishes with this:

"Again thanks for the replies. She's currently not talking to me over another issue so it's bliss! Roping 4yr old in is an excellent idea...if Atilla the mum ever talks to us again!"