What was your child’s first word?

As a parent you spend a lot of time and effort trying to persuade your children to do something for the first time only to realise, too late, that life was better before they learnt this skill.

At the moment most of my energy is spent trying to coax the word Mummy from my son’s lips.

This morning I have read 3 articles all commenting on the joyful moment when baby gurgles his first word. Every article I Googled suggested ‘mama’ would be a child’s first recognisable word, they were illustrated with pictures of babies pointing lovingly at some 20 year old model’s smiling face.

This is bullshit.

My son is a toddler. He can walk and climb and rifle through the kitchen bin hunting for ‘snacks’. He stomps round the house demanding ‘nanas’ or ‘bikkits’ and pointing at stuff he is not supposed to touch yelling  ‘bin’ and ‘hot’ before grabbing hold of the bin or the oven.

He has never said mummy. Not once.

He can say mouse, mine and milk but mama, mum or mummy (any of these will do) seem to be a challenge too far for his tiny little brain.

I am beginning to suspect he is doing this on purpose to wind me up.

On the other hand my daughter says mummy all the frickin time. She wails it in the middle of the night because she has woken up and wants to tell me it’s dark at night, she shouts it from the toilet when she needs to show me a wonderful poo she has produced, she mumbles it in tears when she has rolled deodorant all over her face and tongue.

The problem is that once children have learned a new thing they like to repeat it over and over and over until the thing that once seemed so adorably cute and funny drives you to desperation.

So maybe I will stop trying to get my son to say mummy.

His  first proper word was backpack, please let me know if your children  had similarly random first words if not I’m thinking of changing my name to bin.


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16 thoughts on “What was your child’s first word?

  1. L’s first proper word was dadda (ta da! and duck duck also featured heavily). she called everyone daddy for ages. she then went on to call everyone nanny. after that it was lionel. I nearly fainted when she finally got round to mummy.

  2. First word was lion. Never repeated.

    The next was “out” as shouted repeatedly from his sling in the tesco queue two days before Christmas. At least wilf entertained the queue! It’s now used constantly “out!!!” Means look mama I’ve just pooed on the floor today. Love my 9 month old.

  3. My oldest son’s first word was “shoes” and he was pretty much speaking in sentences before he said mummy. I figured that Daddy always got an announcement “Daddy’s home!” (thank f*@%) in a way that I never did. But yes, now I miss those days when he only said Daddy.

  4. Neither of mine said mummy until they’d achieve a million other words (ok, may be exaggerating slightly). I always just assumed it was because they knew they could get my attention by screaching, screaming and/or throwing things at me.

    Oh, that and headbutting me in the tits, but that only usually means they want the boobs, not me as a person.

  5. The boy’s first word was balloon, at about 8 months. Closely followed by ball. This was usually delivered through snot and sobs as the nearest balloon popped or the nearest ball wasn’t immediately supplied to him. The girl does not speak. Well, she has a knack for a well timed ‘nooooooo’ but she basically gets everything she wants by pointing and shouting something unintelligible. I’m actually a little worried that she doesn’t speak, as she is now 16 months but, given the fact that her brother never stops talking and she understands everything said to her, perhaps I should be counting my blessings!

  6. M’s first word was ‘down’. She’s 1 and still no ‘mummy’ or variation thereof, I’m down with that (ha!) – ‘down’ has proven much more useful communication wise…

  7. “moo” for first child, repeated endlessly. second child “daddy”. Did follow with “mama” a few months later but honestly wish he hadn’t learnt it. It’s repeated non-stop until i give him the attention he wants (and i will walk the other way, so then it gets screamed!!!)

  8. My son’s first word was more, which he quite quickly developed into ’empty, more in increasingly demanding tones.
    Mam didn’t follow for at least another 18 months, and even then I’m not so sure it wasn’t man!

  9. When reading about your son, I was suspecting you’d hidden a video camera in our house and reported everything you saw. 🙂

    I think our son’s first word was either dog or more, with more used so much, that we should have named him Oliver.

  10. Cat, followed by Dada, ‘dat’ which we think is that as it is accompanied by imperious finger pointing and then mumma. Only said in a wail once sick, overtired or if I dare pop out…

  11. My friend mentioned your blog and I had to have a quick look. I love it! Even though I don’t have small children anymore, I now have a granddaughter and she is hilarious so it’s all coming back to me!
    I can’t remember what my son’s first word was, but his favourite word was definitely “milkies” which was followed by tugging at the front of whatever top/dress I was wearing at the time. He used to walk down the beach on holiday pointing at topless women and saying “big milkies” but thankfully never tried to latch on!

  12. I will never forget my daughter”s first words, we were visiting my parents house when she suddenly took of down the corridor on all fours squealing “cat, cat, cat …” and pointing at a very perplexed kitten who wasn’t quite sure whether it should get up and investigate what this weird creature was or if it should make a very quick stage left out through the cat flap.

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