What Your Nickname Says About You

Daddy Pig

What’s in a name?

The husband I made a pact to stop calling each other ‘mummy’ and ‘daddy’ in an attempt to rekindle our pre-parent identity.

The first hurdle was actually remembering what we used to call each other before I was mainly in charge of the dishwasher. Somewhere in our past lurk names whispered passionately in the dark, murmured down phone lines at 3am, names that in the interests of privacy, I would NEVER share on a public forum such as this (Moneypenny and Batman). OMG HOW DID THAT GET IN THERE? I could swear I edited that bit out.

Our pact was going pretty well, except Batman kept calling me “Sair” which has always been my least favourite diminutive of Sara. It’s just not very interesting or committed is it? ‘Sair’ sounds like ‘air’; vacuous, invisible, drifty yet life-sustaining. OH GOD, IS THIS  WHO I AM NOW?

I blew it a few days ago when, tired and hung over, defenses down, I sighed, shook my head regretfully, and  called my husband ”Daddy Pig”  in front of some of our closest friends. Anyone who has watched Peppa Pig every night for four years will know exactly where this term of middle-aged endearment derives from, but it stopped me in my tracks to realise that Daddy Pig and I have been referring to each other by demeaning diminutives since our daughter came along six years ago.

It got me thinking about nicknames and how they can subconsciously reveal what we think about someone. My brothers, for example, call me ‘Boots’ as in ‘Too Big For’ or ‘Bossy’. I like to think this is because they see me as a gently commanding leader figure who is usually right, although they may beg to differ.  Older friends call me ‘Perky’ or ‘Miss P’ from my maiden name Perkins. Newer friends call me by my married name, ‘Brannie’ although I have never officially changed it . So, nomenclature wise, I have gone from the commanding ‘Boots’ via the rather saucy ‘Miss P’ to an extension of my husband/ reference to a bowel-movement inducing grain, ‘Brannie’. OH MY GOD. What has happened to me? Who am I? Sticks and stones will cause a nasty bruise and as for words, well, they contain me. I always wanted to be called Astrid, I think it’s time to bring her in before the menopausal ‘Muffin’ takes hold.

I’ve overheard some brilliant nicknames accidentally revealed by friends and their partners over the years; Bagpuss, Flap-lighter, Willy-nilly-woo-woo, Betty Boothroyd, Wifey, Boo, ‘Nanas, Pudding, Ninky-nonk, YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE. What is your nickname and what does it say abut you?

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17 thoughts on “What Your Nickname Says About You

  1. Our mutual nickname for one another is Lumps. Which is a derivative of Lumpy. Which is a derivative of Pumpkin. Which was a VERY LONG TIME AGO. *gags slightly*

  2. Hilarious! I so understand. Little one is only 9 months and already we’re calling each other ‘mummy’ and ‘daddy’. It has to stop! My pre-marriage nicknames were Daffy or Faffert (because I’m a bit of a faffer) based on my maiden name so also not the Lady Hotpants or Ms Legs or whatever I’d kind of prefer. 😉

  3. I have never had a nickname really but I did room share at uni in my first year with another girl. One night I woke up to quickly realise that her boyfriend was, errrr, staying the night too. I kept my head under the pillow for ages trying to block out any sound but when at last I had to come out due to lack of air I could hear them whispering very loudly to one another in baby voices. She was calling him “liddle fwog” and he was calling her “baby foot”. It took about a minute before I had to run out of the room as couldnt stop laughing out loud. Eugggghhhghh. Only 20 years later and I’m still cringing.

  4. Flap-lighter! OMG Two sets of wet eyes in this office this morning. My nicknames (thankfully not by husband), were Pixie and Jugs. The latter is self-explanatory.

  5. I have been Tink for half my life. Determined not to grow up…? Just a little- though I am less inclined to feel that way now, and also less inclined to be called Tink either these days! Yup, change is happening :-).
    I have often reffered to my partner as ‘the man’, and had subconsciously enjoyed the reference to some despised authoritarian entity- until I became conscious of it and then thought ‘Shit! No wonder we are having some big issues!!’. I am working on something more pleasant, loving, and fair! :-).*

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  8. Great post! I think it’s fine to call each other mummy and daddy as long as its when the kids are in the room. When they aren’t there its a bit odd and sad. I think you are right about reclaiming nick names or coming up with something new and lovely.

  9. Daddy Pig *snorts*!
    I will not divulge my nickname in such a public place, but I can reveal that the Bug’s is “Deddles” because it’s how he used to say his name before he could speak properly. Make of that what you will!

  10. This is hilarious! I love it that you had nicknames that you don’t use in front of others but they sometimes slip out. My husband and I have taken to calling one another ‘horn’ eek! I do not know why or where it started, it is a derivative of ‘hornetblower’ and now this is sounding so much worse than it ever intended to be!! My children sometimes call us ‘horn’ and now this has got to stop, but it’s been going for 10 years or more and oh it’s so hard to get rid of an affection nickname once it starts. Beware people! My friends used to call me Spooks, which I think is because it rhymed with Sukes, which is a shortening of Suky, which is a derivative of Suzanne….very loose link there!

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