77 answers

PreSchool Only Want Ot Use My Son's "Legal" Name

Okay so this may be odd and I may be crazy but here goes. We just recently moved and my son, who will be 4 in Feb. will start Pre-K on Monday at his new school. We went to the school on Friday so he could see his new class and meet his new teachers and when they asked him his name he said it was CJ. Well the teacher made a comment that there was another CJ in the class and asked if he name was actually CJ or if it was something else. We told her it was Christian but we've always called him CJ and I dont even think he would respond if you called him Christian. She said that they were going to use Christian for him on all of his name tags and cubby so he begins to have name recognition with Christian and not so much with CJ. They also want to call him Christian and not CJ and teach him to write his name as Christian and not CJ. In my head I'm thinking his name may be Christian but really everyone knows him as CJ, all of our friends and family call him CJ and he knows himself as CJ, not Christian. I know that he should understand that his name is Christian and his nickname is CJ but I just think it's crazy to start calling him Christian now. So I guess I just want to know if I'm crazy by making such a big deal about them wanting them to call him Christian, not CJ or should I just go along with it and let them call him Christian at school and CJ at home or should we all start calling him Christian so he knows thats his name?? THanks

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

We stayed at the school, after a few days he seemed to really like it there. We just explained to him that he had 2 names. Just like Mommy and Daddy have 2 names so does he(Mommy & T.). We also told him he could pick which name he wanted to be called by. He told me his name was Christian Jack CJ ... So I guess everyone is okay with it but me. There are bigger battles that I will have to fight for him so in this case since he seems to be fine with it, and even like it, I'm not going to sweat the small stuff....Thanks for everyones input!!!

Featured Answers

Hi, you know, you are his mom and if you say CJ, then they should honor that! I taught school and directed a preschool and would have never thought about making a child be called something contrary to what his parents desired.

1 mom found this helpful

You are not crazy, just a loving mother. However, when he begins public school the school may, in fact, demand that he use his given name. It happened to a friend of mine. If that is the inevitability he will have to deal with at school the preschool is actually helping you and him transition. Maybe you can work out a compromise...

1 mom found this helpful

I would tell them to shove it...you are his mom, you get to pick what he is called. I think they are out of line and should use whatever name you tell them.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Your attitude toward the preschool using his new name will likely influence how he feels about it. Could you explain that you love the name Christian and possibly tell the reasons you named him that when he was born. Then explain that CJ is a special nickname that is used only by special family members and friends who know him really, really well. But the people at preschool are not family or special friends yet, so the name Christian will be used for now. I hope you find a way to deal with this that is beneficial for your family.

3 moms found this helpful

I've worked in Kindergarten for years and this is always a battle for either side. Your son should learn to recognize his name and should learn to spell it as well, since this will be the name he will have to use for any formal documents. I have actually seen kids that use nicknames on state test documents and other legal paperwork, which then has to be corrected (not a huge deal, but avoidable). The teachers are trying to help, though it may not feel that way. Children at this age are starting to recognize letters and familiar words (their names) by sight, so it will only be helpful of his language development to allow him to see Christian as his name, because that is his name. Using CJ at home and on his belongings is not going to do any harm, just as using Christian at school will not do any harm. I have had several students in the past that used their middle names at home and first name at school, the first few weeks were transitional, but after that it was second nature for both names and they felt successful in being able to write both names! I hope this helps! Good luck and try not to worry too much, children are so much smarter than we give them credit for! :)

2 moms found this helpful

Personally, I think it should what you and your son want, not what the preschool wants. Ask him what he is comfortable with, and go with that. He has to live with his name, if he wants CJ, tell the preschool to use CJ (except in writing his name, because he should know how to write the whole thing). If he wants Christian, tell the family and friends it has changed. But the point is, it is your choice, not theirs.

2 moms found this helpful

My advice is by no means the only way to go on this, but here's my story and you can take it as you will...My name is Virginia, but everyone called me G. from day one. In 4th grade, I decided I was too grown up for such a nickname and endeavoured to change it myself. Not only was that a nightmare to remember for people who had known me my whole life, but I can only imagine it was annoying to adults to continually be corrected by a 9 year old! Nevertheless, the switch stuck, and I was Virginia ever after...Until...When we were dating, my husband started calling me G.. I thought is was cute (as is everything that someone you're smitten with does!!), so an interesting problem has developed. I still introduce myself as Virginia, so people I work with and went to school with call me Virginia. Everyone who knows me through hubby (his friends, coworkers, etc.) call me G.. It can get really confusing at times, and definitely makes me wish I'd stuck with one or the other. Good luck with your dilemma! Don't know if I'm any help, but let me say that my preschool would go with the name I told them or wouldn't be my preschool any more!

2 moms found this helpful

As an elementary teacher, I "call" my children by the name the parents ask me to! This school year I have three boys in my class by the name of Connor. I call them each Connor and then I use the first letter of their last name. Your son's new teacher should be calling him by what YOU would like for him to be called. It is most certainly not up to the teacher, it is up to the parents.
When it comes to any sort of paperwork, such as report cards, that would be the place where she would have to use his legal name.

2 moms found this helpful

I realize I may be late on this response, but I had to respond. By all means, YOU decide what name YOU want YOUR son called! Do not let them bully you into calling him one name at school and another at home! So there is another CJ at the school? So what! There were several children with the same name at my son's preschool and they just used the last initial, or in one case the full first and last name. You don't have to be mean or snotty about it, but I would just TELL the school (don't ask, just TELL them) that you expect your son to be called by the name that he is used to, that he uses on a daily basis, and if they need to use a last name or initial thats fine. Just be nice, but FIRM. I'm having my own battles with the use of my son's LAST name due to the fact we are in the middle of a legal name change. The elementary school will not use the new last name until finalized by the courts (Jan '09) and my son HATES having to use the last name of a man (his biological father) that has not seen or talked to him in 5 years! Good Luck to you!

2 moms found this helpful

Don't worry about it!!! my boys have nicknames and some classes call them by their legal names and others don't! He will adjust just fine-my one son(I have four) is only 3 1/2 and his brother calls him by a completely differnet name("bob") kids will adjust fine and understand that people call them different nicknames....also at most schools teachers will call them by their legal name so it may be a good thing to get him stARTED EARLY!

2 moms found this helpful

Maybe have his name changed on his birth certificate if you really desire it to remain as "CJ".
I've always been a supporter of naming the person whatever you are going to call him/her. It avoids a lot of confusion especially when they're young, and they can choose a nickname themselves later on if they choose to do so.
Example: One daughter named her child "Judith Lindsey", and when we first went to visit and gave a gift, to "Judith", we were told in an icy cold tone that "She's going to be called Lindsey". Hubby and I shut bit our tongues, and later on wondered why didn't she name her Lindsey if that's what they insisted on calling her? "Lindsey" never knew she was a "Judith" until she was almost 12 years old!! It makes no sense to me at all, but that's the way my brain works!! LOL

Other than that, just let your son learn that his given name is Christian, but that you and family/friends will continue to call him CJ if that is what HE wants. Or ask that each of the "CJ's" are called CJ with the initial or actual surname, as a couple already suggested.

2 moms found this helpful

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