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if I understand you correctly, you have a menu that is a single movieClip (let's say instance name is menu_mc); and in the menu is 8 buttons (each with instence names of for example first_btn, second_btn ect.) If you want one of the buttons to gotoAndStop / or gotoAndPlay a certain frame number, you have to first reference the movieClip name and then the button name.
For example if you wanted you firts_btn button to gotoAndStop frame 20 it would look like this:
Almost, ok I'll try to be clearer (and remember I'm using a french version of Flash so I have to translate some of the words used):
I have an image symbol called "sub1". This symbol contains 9 movie clips which are instances of movie clips called "hover_sub_1a" to "hover_sub_1i". These movie clips are instances of a button symbol called "hover_pic_btn".
Now, the action is in each movie clip "hover_sub_1a" to "hover_sub_1i" and they each call a different section of the website.
Now, I have to change the first button so that, instead of loading a part of the website, it goes to the image symbol at frame 20.
In the image symbol, I have a stop(); at frame 9 and an interpolation of movement going from 11 to 20 and frame 20 shows the two other menus (which are in fact meant to be sub-menus of "hover_sub_1a".
I hope it clears things up
Ok nevermind, I used _parent and it worked fine (I had to ask my boss and now I look like a fool but that's alright lol :P)