It is time to retire ALL the prefixes. Because just being a plain old “mom” is hard enough without adding a prefix filled with expectations – most of which are completely unattainable. So let’s just let go of:
- Full-time mom
This is applied to women who do not work outside of the home. Seems harmless… until you recognize that the opposite of the full-time mom is the “working mom”, implication being that those of us with paying jobs must be parenting only part-time. Really?!? Is that a thing?!? Because as far as I can tell, parenthood is a 24/7 sort of endeavour, regardless of what else you have on your plate.
- Working mom
So I guess that makes the mother who doesn’t have a job someone on a permanent vacation? There are no working dads. There are just men with jobs. Some of them are dads.
This one is interesting because it gets thrown at women who have jobs outside of the home and women who do not. If your kids get to school on time, play a couple of sports, and have homemade birthday cakes, you are at risk of being labeled a “supermom”. If you manage these things while still finding time to take a yoga class, go for a run around the neighbourhood, and/or hold down a job, it is unavoidable. You WILL be referred to as a “Supermom”… probably behind your back… definitely in a snarky tone.
The implication is that you are somehow doing all of these things to show up other mothers. Your children will clearly end up in therapy, your marriage is no doubt in trouble, and you must be botoxing…. Or could it be that you are just well-organized, health-conscious, and accomplished? Just sayin’.
Parenting is hard. Being a woman is hard. So let’s apply a little kindness. I love the word “mom”. It’s what my kids painted on the coffee mug I use in the morning and what they call me when they aren’t arguing with me (in which case, I become M.O.T.H.E.R). So let’s not sully such a beautiful syllable with a bunch of pasted on descriptors that are really only there to make us all feel bad about whatever choices we have made.