What’s in a Name? How Grandparents get their Nick Names.

With National Grandparents Day just past, we started to wonder about the many different names that grandparents are called. While many grandparents choose to remain traditional with Grandma or Grandpa, there is wide spectrum of nicknames: MomMom/PopPop, Meemaw, Gramps/Gram and so many more. So where and why did these nicknames come from?

Grandma and Grandpa may be too difficult for a young child to say or they may feel too old or traditional. So many grandparents choose their own nickname, something that makes them comfortable and celebrates the special bond between grandparents and grandchildren.

Sometimes nicknames come about from something the child associates with the grandparent, a specific scent can create a “Peaches Gran” or color of lipstick can create a “Cherry Granny”. Maybe a location provides inspiration and there is a “Beach Grammy”.

Another popular naming for grandparents is related to heritage. Tutu in Hawaiian, Bubbe in Yiddish, Nonna in Italian, Abuelita in Spanish, Oma/Umpa in German, to name a few.

And sometimes, nicknames can be a bit practical, used to differential between other sets of grandparents if they choose the same name. We’ve heard of Cape Cod Grandma/Grandpa or New Jersey Grams/Gramps.

What was the tradition in your family? We would love to hear about it on our Bridgewater Facebook page!