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Long Story---How Betty became Bette. Never underestimate the power of a woman.
BetteK posted:
I was born during WW II while my father was serving in the army. My mother shared an apartment with her sister to save on expenses. My aunt was named Victoria Elizabeth, but she loathed the Victoria part and was always known as Betty.

Aunt Betty was a corker. She was a divorcee and a scandal to my grandparents. Whenever she met a new boyfriend, it was always convieniently just a few weeks before her "birthday." There were a lot of new boyfriends, a lot of "birthdays," and a lot of presents.

Aunt Betty was a beautiful brunette, but her favorite actress, Bette Davis, was a blond, so Aunt Betty became a blond too. She was still beautiful. She still had a lot of boyfriends following her around like a pack of puppies.

Enter me and time for me to be baptized. I was 3 months old, and like many Elizabeth Annes, I was always Betty Anne at home.

Aunt Betty was to be my godmother. She saw that as a golden opportunity. She coaxed Bernie, one of her "puppies," to take her for a little ride in the country. The ride was to the parsonage where she had a little chat with the minister.

Come Sunday morning, and I was duly baptized. The family went home with a booklet testifying to the ceremony. The booklet was stuck in a baby book. And for a while the minister was one of Aunt Betty's "puppies."

Fast forward 11 years. My first period report card in 6th grade named me as Bette Anne. I asked Mr. MacLaughlin about this. He told me to go home and find my Certificate of Baptism. There it was in blue and white with a seal on it and everything signed by pastor "puppy,"

Back to Mr. MacLaughlin I went first thing Monday morning. He told me the tale of how he had taken the most beautiful woman in the world for a Saturday drive in the country. Mr. Bernard P. MacLaughlin was Bernie, Bernie the puppie! He regaled me with stories of the fun-loving aunt who died when I was 2.

And I went from Betty Anne to just plain Bette.

missist responded:
Such a great story! I was thinking there are 'characters' in every family--and years after the normal folks are gone-- everyone still remembers that 'corker' as you put it.
Gracefilled responded:
This is a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing a bit of your history or should that be herstory.
fibroinsd responded:
wow...what a fun story....! Thanks for the laugh this morning !

Let's put the fun back in dysfunctional !- Mary Englebright
dollbug responded:
Hello BetteK....MiMi in it might just be my fibro fog kicking in or perhaps something else.....but I have to ask were you named Elizabeth Anne and your Aunt Betty decided different when you were baptized or were you name Betty Anne. OK....I do think I understand that your aunt was actually named Victoria Elizabeth but I guess she dropped the Victoria because she did not *like* it? OK...I am thorough confused exactly where did the BettyK come into play. (is K your maiden name or married name?)

By the way I think every family has what I refer to as the *black sheep of the family*....(which is what I can remember from years ago)....whether they want to admit this or not. I know for sure that I have known some of these people in my lifetime.

And by the way....I do like your aunt's name, Victoria Elizabeth...(which reminds me of a queen) and I also like Elizabeth Anne too since I named my younger sister the same....I was 12 years old when she was born.

Funny though how some of us do NOT like the names which we were stuck with. (I am one of them).

Thanks for sharing.


BetteK replied to dollbug's response:
Aunt Betty hated the Victoria bit. The old queen was my grandmother's idol. Aunt decided to go by Elizabeth, which her brothers and sisters nicknamed into Betty.

My birth certificate still reads Elizabeth Anne. It's the baptisimal certificate where I'm Bette--thanks to my godmother/aunt. The K is for my married last name. (There must be another Bette--without the K--somewhere who co-opted the short form for facebook.)

Hope that clears things up.

By the way, when Bernie the "puppy" was trailing after my aunt, he was a student at Rutgers. She was 30. But she had those violet eyes and raven hair (think Elizabeth Taylor)--quite a combination. I just barely remember Aunt Betty. She died of some abdominal mass when I was 26 months old. But she taught me to read! Honest. Kindergarden was the pits. Boring!

xperky replied to BetteK's response:
Good story. You have some of your aunt's feisty character too!
With Compassion,

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