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Term of Endearment??

I only have one sister (pictured left) and my husband is an only child, so in my mind my daughter only has one auntie. However, since having my daughter I keep coming across people who have a peculiar habit of referring to themselves as her Auntie even though they are not related.  I know this isn’t specific to the UK, as its common practice in many other countries (e.g. Italy, Mexico, Philippines, and Austria), but not something I experienced growing up in Canada.  I know it’s a term of endearment, it’s polite and shows a sign of respect but I find it creepy.

I don’t mind if it’s someone close to us but when casual acquaintances do it, it winds me up.  Madame does call our best friends Auntie and Uncle, but I don’t mind as this is the closest she is going to come to having and Aunt and Uncle in the UK; they spoil her accordingly and I consider them family.  I’m probably just being pedantic and I can’t see it being a big problem unless they insist on her calling them Auntie…..

What do you think?


10 Responses

  1. We had the same discussion. It feels weird to refer to everyone as auntie. I also don’ t mind with my best friend but it can get kind of blurry with other friends. But then it also feels weird a kid referring to adults by their first them.

    • As kids we had to use Ms, Mrs or Mr. I agree first name sounds weird. Too bad there wasn’t a middle of the road.

  2. I am auntie to lots of children as encouraged by my friends, their parents, how ever my children do not call anyone else auntie unless it is their Dads or my sister. But the older ones have dropped the auntie bit now.

  3. I have two actual aunties : one who is like a second mum and one who I see less than once a year and who has had very little influence on my life. I have many aunties who are not actually related to me but have been hugely important to me as I grew up. In my eyes an aunty is someone who is important to me and my family and who genuinely loves and cares about us, regardless of actual blood ties.
    However, having said that, my daughter hasn’t got any non-related aunties. Mostly because she has so many real ones.

  4. I agree…only appropriate with really close friends. We met a couple on honeymoon, became best friends and have been very close as they have brought 4 kids into the world – the kids call us auntie & uncle. We have other friends with kids but without that level of closeness – do insist on first names though…not Mr & Mrs – very retro!

  5. I find it annoys me the other way … I am NOT Auntie Ella. Well, except for two children.

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