The First Words


Thinking of the words that create a bond, improve family ties, and build relation and kinship. No wonder, you may have heard and called a person the word 'mama or mommy', 'papa', or 'dada' they are words of marvel since they are the first words of a child. They are our first words.


We experience a sense of emotional bond with our parents. Children start pronouncing these words in the early days of their lives when they start to develop language ability to communicate their basic needs to their parents. Though, it's emotionally touching to hear the first word of your son or daughter. We get moved by the words of our parents when we ask them about our first words. 

Hearing the word mama or papa from a child creates a sense of responsibility for the parents. It's natural and wonderful as it is interesting how these two words play a crucial role in developing a family union and simplifying communication between parents and children.

Parental love reflected by the first words to children influences child development mentally and emotionally, whereas paternal and maternal acceptance lead to both socioemotional development and mental health of a child.


The first words of a child cultivate and stimulate parental love for both children and their parents therefore unconditionally enhancing parental acceptance which includes care, affection, warmth, comfort, concern, nurturance, and support.


Addressing your baby boy as a son also is interestingly wonderful the same as it's to addressing your baby girl as a daughter. Also, older people of the age of parents can address the young people of the age of their children as sons and daughters and it may surprise to hear them reciprocating by calling them mom and father or Uncle and Aunt.

In addition, the words Uncle and Aunt can be substitutes for mom and father especially when these close family relatives take a role to raise their niece and nephews following poverty or loss of parents and other circumstances.

Also, words such as brother or sister play an extraordinary role in enhancing the family relationship between and among siblings. That extends into family kinship relationships where words such as cousin, grandma, and grandpa come into our lives. They create a sense of extended family love which is strong and bonding hard enough to forget about each other.

That means a lot to the family union as its strength is felt between the parents and relatives or close friends with deep motherly or fatherly relationships. Also, kinship bonds are a source of personal identity and support which influence child development.

The first words of a child are not only exceptional but also play wonders at improving as well as shaping the emotional well-being of both parents towards their children as they extend to kinship relationships to include words such as uncle, niece, aunt, and nephew.


Tsang, K. K. Y., & Lam, S.-F. (2023). Parental unconditional acceptance: An antidote to parental conditional regard. Social Development, 00, 1–16.

 James Dean, ( April 7, 202 2). After ‘mama,’ children’s first words include ‘this’ and ‘that’

Davidoff, Leonore, 'Forgotten Figures: Aunts, Uncles, Nieces, Nephews, and Cousins', Thicker than Water: Siblings and their Relations, 1780-1920 (Oxford, 2011; online edn, Oxford Academic, 19 Jan. 2012),, accessed 5 Aug. 2023.

Li, X. and Meier, J. (2017), Father Love and Mother Love: Contributions of Parental Acceptance to Children's Psychological Adjustment. J Fam Theory Rev, 9: 459-490.

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