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Just Engaged and Proposals

What to call the future In-laws?!

Hi everyone!
I can't believe this is already an issue, but here we go:  My fiance and I have been engaged for about 3 months and already my mother wants him to start calling her Mom!!!!  Here's the kicker:  His mom passed away about 4 days after we got engaged.  He's still coping with this, and we both feel like it's too soon for him to call someone else 'Mom" when he is still dealing with this loss.  I now have to politely ask my mom to refrain from making these comments without hurting her feelings.  Has anyone else had to ask their parents to not demand that their future son- or daughter-in-law call them "Mom" or "Dad"?  How did you do it?  What did you say?

Re: What to call the future In-laws?!

  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited August 2010
    Just tell your mother what you told us, that he is still dealing with the death of his mother. I'm sure she will understand. I doubt when she said call me mom, she meant to make him uncomfortable. Most likely the opposite.

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  • I was actually wondering what to call my future in-laws as I think it would be weird to call them mom and dad, I have a mom and dad already.... I plan to just call them by their first names like I have been. Hopefully they won't be offended that I don't call them mom and dad. 

    I agree with the PP it seems like your mom will understand considering the circumstances.  
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  • I think your mom will understand given the circumstances.  Ask if there's something else he can call her instead of mom.  Would she (and he) be comfortable calling her by her first name?

    I call my in-laws either mom and dad or when I am speaking to others, like my parent, I call them by their first names.
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  • well my FIL's introduced themselves as Ron and Judy

    so it is Ron and Judy, my FI calls my parents by their names, nothing weird at all

    sure we get nicknames right after I got engaged and before I was on theknot Ron was calling me "FDIL" so I came back with FFIL ("PHIL") so I mean it shouldn't change the relationships only make them stronger....

    i would talk to your mom like the pp said, explain he is having an issue with this and he shouldn't HAVE to call her MOM....not calling the FMIL "mom" won't change our relationships...
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  • I've always called my FMIL "Ma" so this won't be an issue for us, but in your case, I would pull your mother aside and explain the sensitivity of the issue. She should understand!
  • It's interesting how this issue doesn't always come up.  His parents have never mentioned what I should call them.  I'll probably continue calling his Step-Dad by his first name.  I agree with you all.  I'm thinking my Mom just wants him to feel like he's part of the family, but she should understand that he's not ready to call her "Mom".  He currently calls her by her first name, so that should be fine.
  • Hahaha actuallllly this has come up a few times between us, basically for the reason that neither of us know what to call the other's parents. I usually still do the "um, hey, you" thing lol. Calling them Mr./Mrs. Lastname seems too formal, and calling them by their first name seems too informal. We haven't even gotten into the mindset of calling them Mom or Dad. Right now I'm trying to start getting used to calling them by their first names if I have to, but I'll still avoid it if I can. It's just so weird.
  • In Response to Re: What to call the future In-laws?!:
    [QUOTE]Hahaha actuallllly this has come up a few times between us, basically for the reason that neither of us know what to call the other's parents. I usually still do the "um, hey, you" thing lol. Calling them Mr./Mrs. Lastname seems too formal, and calling them by their first name seems too informal. We haven't even gotten into the mindset of calling them Mom or Dad. Right now I'm trying to start getting used to calling them by their first names if I have to, but I'll still avoid it if I can. It's just so weird.
    Posted by slr31[/QUOTE]

    Did your fiance introduce you to them as "this is my mother and father" and then they never actually said "call me so and so"?  Yeah, that could be tricky lol.  My FI's parents intoduced themselves to me by first name so I've just always called them by their first names.  If that had not happened, I would have used a formal Mr or Mrs Lastname title because you never know how they'd feel about that, some people are raised to feel its disrespectful to have a 'child' address them by their first name, so if you were never given an option, I'd go the formal route every time you talk to them and see if they correct you to "Oh don't call me that, just call me First Name" :-)

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  • While we were dating I called them Mr. & Mrs.  & then after we got engaged MIL would make comments about how she calls her in-laws Mom & Dad, and I just smiled.  I'm not calling anyone mom & dad who didn't raise me.  Now I call them by their first names, and after the first couple of months of engagement she dropped it.  I'm not trying to be thick-headed here, but I don't understand the custom of calling in-laws Mom & Dad - my parents wouldn't want my fiance to call them that - out of respect for his parents.  The issue is not black & white obviously, it's just my take on it. 
  • Lol I still call them Mr & Mrs Lastname... they've never told me to call them anything else!! After 2.5 years. People make fun of me, but.... however on very rare occassions I call them mom and dad more in referance to when I'm really saying Chris's mom & dad. or "your mom & dad" TO Chris. I just cut out the Chris or your. However your situation is very different, and your mother really should understand he's just not ready. Sorry for his & your loss.
  • I've always called my future-in-laws by their first names, it's how they introduced themselves to me.  My FMIL signs her emails and cards to me "Mom-Suzanne", but I still just call her by her first name.  I do call his grandmom 'Nana' though, that's how she was introduced to me and pretty much what everyone calls her.  He calls my parents Mrs. Deborah and Mr. Steve...I'm not sure why lol it's just what he's called them since the start.  My younger sister's boyfriend picked up on it and calls them that now too. 
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  • my dad passed away almost 9 yrs ago and i dont feel comfortable calling another man "dad" or any variation of the word so i have and will continue to call FFIL by his first name.
    my FI's mother slip when he was 7 and his dad never remarried so he doesnt feel comfortable calling my mom "mom" which makes sense.  he actually doesnt call her anything lol but if he had to then he'd use her first name.

    my parents however call each others in-laws "mom and dad" which i always found odd as a child, but its all depends on how comfortable you are with the idea and your own unique situation.  i dont think theres a right or wrong way.

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  • My FI and I call each other's moms "mom," but we call each other's dads by their first names. My mom brought up a good point when we were trying to figure this out. Your dad is your dad, but it's in a lot of moms natures to be moms to everyone. So calling another woman mom isn't quite as wierd as calling another man dad. I think in your situation your mom will understand if he's not ready for Mom #2 yet.
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  • In Response to Re: It's Wednesday- can we do something fun?:
    [QUOTE] First I decided that I was going to go "make friends" so I started talking to one of the bouncers Andy, when he told me his name was Andy I freaked out and I screamed "ARE YOU ANDY FROM TOY STORY!" Posted by Penny66[/QUOTE]

    I so wish I could see someone do this! I nearly just choked on my mentos reading aha

  • I call them by their first names.
  • I call my in-laws by their first names.  I am very close to my mom and dad and would feel weird calling someone else mom or dad.

    My sister now has three kids so she usually refers to both my parents and her in-laws as grandma and grandpa a lot of the time now.  I figure I'll either do that once the time comes or just stick with their first names.

    I would just explain to your mom the delicacy of the situation your FH is in with losing his mom and ask her not to push him to call her mom.  He will know now that she is comfortable with it if he chooses to do so in the future than he can if and when he is ready...I'm sure she'll understand.
  • My FFIL passed away 3 years ago and my FMIL never remarried. She introduced herself as "Ms. ****" so that is what I call her, and have called her from the start. I'm not sure how that will change once we get married but I suppose we'll just see.
  • I may think just tell you mom what you think about this if you worried.

    But do you think it's better to ask your man first, although he just lost her mom, but maybe if your mom wants to take him as her son, it's kind of healing. How do you think?

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