I just figured out something. You should refer to your child in the third person. Not always, that would be … weird. But I realized that when I go into the library, the librarians want to talk to 80, but they don’t remember her name. If I cue them, by saying “Oh, 80, let’s take our books over to the return desk”, they’ll hear that and be able to use her name. This makes 80’s experience better too.
Plus it helps her learn her name. I knew a little boy who, when looking at photos of himself with his family, would point to himself in the image and say “you”. I think it bespeaks how clever the boy was, to pick up on the word associated with each face. “Mommy, daddy, and you!”
Now that I think about it, this is probably good advice when you’re out and about with someone who doesn’t know the group you’re encountering. This cues everyone in the group to your partner/friend/hobo’s name, and they don’t have to feel bad dodging calling them by the first name, because they know you introduced them last time, and you shouldn’t have to ask.
A perpetual name tag would help, of course, but this brings on many other social awkwardnesses. “How do you know my name? Oh.”
My mom never let me wear clothes with my name on them when I was a little girl, for fear a predator (of the human variety, not a coyote) would say (and I quote my mom), “Oh Sonya, I lost my puppy and your mom told me you should come help me find it.” This was during the face-on-the-milk-carton mid-eighties, and Johnny Gosch was not only an Iowan, but a cousin of mine.
For 80, I’m planning on appliqueing the infinity symbol on her stuff.