What Are Some Danish Nicknames for Grandmothers?

Mormor and Fafa are Danish nicknames for a grandmother, and Morfa and Famor are Danish nicknames for a grandfather. Bedstemoder is the formal name for a grandmother, and bedstefader is the formal name for a grandfather.

Barnebarn is the formal Danish word for grandchild. The Danish nicknames for grandparents differentiate between grandparents on the mother’s side of the family and grandparents on the father’s side. Mormor is the nickname for the maternal grandmother, while Morfar is for the paternal grandmother.

The Danish language also has different nicknames for maternal and paternal great-grandparents. The formal name is Oldeforældre. The maternal great-grandmother is Oldefar, and the paternal great-grandmother is Oldefader. The maternal great-grandfather is Oldemor, and the paternal great-grandfather is Oldemoder. The formal word for great-grandchild is oldebarn.

Great-great-grandparents are Tipoldeforældre, and great-great-grandchildren are tipoldebarn. The Danish language adds one “tip” to the beginning of every title for every generation after great-grandparents, so the maternal great-great-grandmother is Tipoldemor, and the maternal great-great-grandfather is Tipoldefar.

Danish grandparents are very involved in their grandchildren’s lives, and many provide childcare for their grandchildren while the parents work. Some of these women are part of the “sandwich generation” with their parents still living and needing care. This causes conflicts for working-age grandmothers because the Danish government wants to keep them in the labor market to boost economic development and to finance an aging population.