How would one refer to one's parent's 2nd spouse, whom they have divorced? For example, I have a biological father, and a step-father, but what about the man my mother was married to before my step-father?

I doubt there's a single word for this, but I need some way to refer to him that isn't so cumbersome. Best I have come up with so far is "my mom's second husband", but I feel this really doesn't convey his importance in my upbringing, so I tack on "they were married all the time I was in school", but it's not great.

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  • 3
    "My former stepfather"? – Marthaª Feb 11 '14 at 20:19
  • Why not use his name? – Oldcat Feb 12 '14 at 1:05
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    "Erstwhile upbringer" has a ring to it… – Potatoswatter Feb 12 '14 at 2:11
  • @Potatoswatter Certainly does indeed! – wastubbs Feb 12 '14 at 20:49

It's completely appropriate, if you desire, to continue to call him your stepfather if that's what he was. You can have several step-fathers in succession. Simply because you are no longer living with him doesn't erase your relationship with him. Your mother doesn't become your ex-mother when you leave home. Step-siblings are also for life.

If you are not close to him, you can call him your mother's ex.

If Heather can have two mommies, you can certainly have two step-fathers.

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  • 4
    They should coin a term for that: stepfather emeritus. .-D – Louel Feb 11 '14 at 20:41
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    Out-of-step-father. – Edwin Ashworth Feb 11 '14 at 20:42

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