Calling step-parents mom or dad
• Cambridge, England
26 Sep 08
I think it depends on the family and how close they are. If the child was very young when the parents changed, then I see absolutely nothing wrong with a child calling a step-parent Mom or Dad. I know several kids who do this (and clarify the situation only if it's necessary by referring to their 'real dad' or their 'step-dad' or whatever). Very often, if the children were older when things changed, they will call their step-parent by their first name. Children are very adaptable and everything should be done to make them feel comfortable about a relationship. Insisting on one thing or another just because it is 'correct' or 'exact' can often lead to tension and will eventually damage their whole lives.
29 Sep 08
Ok or not doesn't make sense. That depends on the attitude of the child and your family. but first, a step-mom or step-dad should communicate with the child and make him or her live in a peaceful and warm home and never have him/her get hurt again. Don't think more about whether he/she call you mom or dad. If what you do is really for him/her, the child will sense that and accept you one day.
• United States
26 Sep 08
Well I think it depends on the individual situation. I was raised with my dad and step-mom and I have always called her "mom". Granted I was only 4 or 5 when they got married and my biological mom wasn't really in the picture. They gave me a choice to call her mom or by her first name and I chose mom. In some cases I think it's good to do that and leave it up to the child. I can see how it could case problems in other situations where the parent who does not have custody is more a part of the child's life though, so in cases like that I think some sort of agreement should be reached. Also for older children I think it's perfectly understandable if they prefer not to call the step parent mom or dad. In my opinion it's is very important the the child is comfortable either way and is not made to feel like they are doing something wrong either way. The child's feelings and comfort should be the first things that are considered.