Friday, January 26, 2007

Mummy-fied!

There are few events, in one’s life, that can be truly called life-changing. Becoming a mother is one of them. Suddenly, from being this care-free, independent person, you metamorphose to being this constant care-giver, whose every action has an equal re-action on another tiny being. Its huge, monumental and yes, life-changing.

And yes I have ranted about all the changes I have made, I have had to make in my life. Some big, some small. However, there is one that I am unable to face up to. Its being ‘Mummi-fied’. From being this person, with an individuality and characteristics of my own – I am now ‘a Mummy’ with universal characteristics of mummys. From ‘Moms don’t swear’ to ‘moms have to be gentle’ I’ve heard it all.

But what hurts me most – is loosing my name. It started out innocuously with hubby one day referring to me as ‘mama’. I may have raised an eyebrow but let it pass nevertheless. But these days, its become kind of regular. Hubby has just stopped referring to me by my name – he calls me ‘mamma’. “Mamma what do we have for dinner?” to “mamma, do you like this?”

My friend M and I once discussed this in college. How some parents – stop referring to each other by their names but become ‘mommy’ and ‘daddy’. How ridiculous it seems. That we sacrifice our individuality to the alter of parenthood. Didn’t think it would hit so close to home. That one professionally qualified man living in the 21st century would call his professionally qualified post-grad wife ‘mamma’. We could well be living in the 16th century Great Britain, Mr and Mrs. Briggs with our brood of 6 kids and the lord and master of the house addressing his wife as ‘mother’.

I am so pissed with this dated behavior I want to rouse him back to reality. My reaction? I’ve stopped answering hubby when he calls me ‘mamma’. He thinks that’s cute – so he’s sticking to his guns. And I am going to stick to mine. Lets see who wins this one.

28 Comments:

At 2:33 AM, Blogger Drama Div@ said...

after watching Oprah, i think marriage is the surest way to "lose" yourself. You're always being refered as someone's wife, someone's mom but no longer YOU!

this issue is very subjective, some might find it okay... some might not... im in the latter group.

 
At 7:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am sure soon we all will be saying ... [drumrolls please!] ... mamma wins! :-)

- s.b.

 
At 7:38 AM, Blogger Usha said...

I understand what you are saying. But to be fair, don't you think that we seem to be also encouraging this kind of attitude by putting our role as mom first and then being a person?
Just go around and read the blogs of many young moms and see what they write about most of the time. Please don't get me wrong, I love reading all about the adorable things all these kids say and do - so much that I wish I had a little one too.
But you see what I mean?

 
At 8:13 AM, Blogger Sanjay said...

lol.. Keep us posted. I agree with you though, he has to call you by your name.

 
At 8:42 AM, Anonymous Coffee said...

LOL!!! Good one there again!! :)

For a very short time after I came to singapore I did a course on Montessori teaching (Since I couldn't do dentistry, I was trying my hand at all sorts of things).... during on of the lessons our course conductor mentioned this, that after a child is born husbands and wives start calling each other mum and dad, and said that its good in a way so that the child starts calling them by that name....... otherwise you will find you kid calling you, "STS(mamma), I am hungry!!!!! "
So she said (quite an experienced lady in her field) its good to continue calling each other mum and dad till the kid starts understanding the relations. :)

 
At 9:39 AM, Blogger Fuzzylogic said...

I would say he is better off calling you by the name,yes perhaps when you are speaking to kid about each other you can say "to" the kid about what mamma or dad are doing etc.It's not that age where you are happy calling him "munne ke baap" or vice versa "munne ki amma" I used to find that so incredibly stupid!I address my husband with his name and he is expected to do so with me.I feel rather strongly about some things and this is one of them.We are daughters,moms,wives,sisters,
daughter in laws,professionals and also more important of them all we are unique individuals with a identity of our own.Stick to your guns:)

 
At 11:20 AM, Blogger The Mad Momma said...

:o) guilty as charged.. I have called my husband by his surname for years because we were colleagues... and then when we started to teach the brat to say mamma and dadda... i ended up calling the hubby dadda too.. not when i am calling him for my work, but say, if the brat is calling him and he hasnt heard, i yell out and say 'dadda, the brat wants you to come do xyz... '...
must try not to do that much either...

 
At 11:51 AM, Blogger @ said...

ditto some of TMM's comment - I call Bapa when it is from KM's perspective. And he does the same to me, in fact, grandma calls me Amma too!!! (when she means for KM to call or pretends that KM is talking to me) I think it is kind of cute, why does this have to get complicated with things like identity?? It is like a title, isn't it? One you have earned and well deserve??
Then again, if that is the only name he will ever call you, I can see why it would get on your nerves! Hope you win.....!

 
At 12:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well written! I hear ya and I back ya!

Orchid

http://d-orchid.blogspot.com

 
At 6:59 PM, Anonymous Vi said...

Don't give in. :)

 
At 7:09 PM, Blogger Alan said...

I would never call my wife momma, mummy or any variation. It just sounds sooooo wrong (on many levels).

 
At 8:28 PM, Blogger That Armchair Philosopher said...

bwahahahaha. Gosh, these insights are fabulous. Really.

Something tells me you might win. ;)

 
At 12:29 AM, Blogger Something to Say said...

Drama Diva: If marriage is called the surest way to loose oneself - i wonder what they'd call motherhood?

SB: :) yay!!!!

Usha: yes, true - and if you dont put motherhood first - there will be 'n' no of people calling you a 'selfish' woman. Somehow this doesnt happen with the men-folk - i wonder why?

Sanjay: Thanks for the encouragement!

 
At 12:31 AM, Blogger Something to Say said...

Coffee: I dont mind refering to ourselves am mom and dad in sonny's presence - but when he's not around - lets not forget the woman/man you married.

fuzzy: yes fuzzy - me not budging from this stance :)

MM: O I do that too "sonny - give this to baba" or "see what baba is up to" sure he needs to know that this guy who comes home to eat and sleep is his father - but when I'm talking to hubby - i like to call him by his name - and expect the same to be reciprocated.

 
At 12:34 AM, Blogger Something to Say said...

K's Mom: I dont mind - explaining the relationship to sonny - but having to explain to hubby - that I am his wife and not momma - thats what gets to me.

orchid: yay!! My list of supporters increases :)

Vi: No way!

Alan: Ah! here's a man who thinks :)

 
At 12:35 AM, Blogger Something to Say said...

TAP: Something tells me that too :)

 
At 9:52 AM, Blogger just me said...

Been there, too. Hell, I even got jealous because the baby got so much attention that no one though about me! That lastest two minutes. We did the same thing, and it got worse, "I don't know, ask your mama?" But stick to your guns on this one. Or, if you ever get to go out on the town again in the next 18 years or so, call him Daddy the whole time. He'll get the picture. Good luck.
Like the blog, its honest and real.

 
At 10:45 AM, Anonymous artnavy said...

agree with alan and I guess navy also does

But i slip up sometimes when anush is trying to get his attention- i call him appa as she would...i better be careful

 
At 3:13 AM, Blogger itchingtowrite said...

talk abt it/... i got an advice, from you can guess who it cud be, to call my husband not by name but atleast shorten it or atleast say daddy so it sounds more respectful.. we were in the same college and therefore i always referred to him by name and i think it's our undertadning that matters. to satisfy them i try to infuse lot of respect and gentleness whenever i call hubby in "THEIR" presence but i stick to the name. at times even i refer as daddy when i try to call him on behalf of the kids

 
At 4:05 AM, Blogger Rohini said...

What is even more irritating when other people try to have conversations like "So what would Ayaan's Mama like to drink?" It really pisses me off.

 
At 3:28 PM, Anonymous NZ said...

IT has never happened in our household or even with my friends' so its very new to me and weird too. Why would the partners or spouses call each other mum or dad ??

It would not only bother me but I think it would have bothered my children too as they would have asked me or hubby point blank - are we each others' mum and dad, if not then y are we calling each other that !

 
At 3:30 PM, Anonymous NZ said...

oh, forgot to say, I am your supporter to and don't forget to blog about and let us know who won !!

 
At 4:04 AM, Blogger Has to be me said...

Ya seen this happen many a times in many families. Doesnt happen with us....but I do call him "Daddy" when Im speaking on my son's behalf!!! And he's got no probs with it. Thankfully doesnt happen vice-versa!
But well most of my son's classmates' parents refuse to even ask my name....they say we'll simply call u as his mom! Grrr...

 
At 4:31 PM, Anonymous Twisted DNA said...

One of the things I keep telling new parents is, "Try to keep your identity as individuals." You want to enjoy parenthood not get sucked into it. I definitely see your view point.

The situation is different in our household... me my son both call my wife with her first name :) She doesn't like it very much ;)

 
At 2:15 PM, Blogger GettingThereNow said...

Whenever my husband called me "mamma" or "Ma", I always replied "Indore mein hain" (She in in Indore). That solved the problem pretty soon!

 
At 12:09 AM, Blogger Something to Say said...

just me: welcome! and thanks for the encouragement!

art: I'm willing to be called 'mamma' when sonny is around - but when I am in the wife mode - i think I should be addressed by my name.

itchy: Respect i dont mind - but changing our relationship - i do

rohini: o yes, that irritates me too!

nz: be prepared to listen to my rants about our war on this one :)

has to be me: Do you remember, what your friends called your mom? I think mine also addressed my mom as 'sts' mom'.

twisted: :) and does ur son call you by name too?

getting there now: i defi like this approach - must try it. hmmm...

 
At 7:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My in laws call each other mamma and pops and it plain freaks me out. If my husband does the same when we have kids I will clobber him. You have my full support.

 
At 3:44 AM, Blogger itchingtowrite said...

tagged

 

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