To be on MN even though I don't have children?

(110 Posts)
IwantaPetFox Wed 09-Jan-13 08:32:34

I know this argument has been done to death, but still on so many threads I see people being questioned as to why they're here if they don't have DCs and aren't/can't ttc.

I'm not a regular by any means but I ended up here after a Google search threw up one of the funniest threads I've ever read (Medieval Mumsnet - I'm a historian and it tickled me). I signed up because it's such a busy forum full of highly intelligent women around my age and I've since seen some of the best relationship advice and arguments for feminism I've ever read.

And as most people are parents it's not like I'm trying to infiltrate an exclusive club. I'll probably have kids one day but even if I don't, I will still be surrounded by them because they are a huge part of human life!

But if anyone has any genuine objections as to why it's wrong/odd for non parents to be here, I am interested and open to them.

FingoFango Wed 09-Jan-13 09:34:24

And people without kids can still have valid opinions on things to do with kids. Even if we are not parents most of us will have some exposure to children in our lives so still have views and ideas. We were all children oursleves once as well!

Although I personally don't go in the bits of Mumsnet which are about kids, just stick to the sports, health and beauty stuff.

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 09:38:42

I don't have children so tend not to post much on child-specific threads, unless they're about education. I still find plenty to say though!

I wonder what Mumsnet could be called instead? Adultsnet? Quite the wrong image!

MrsHoarder Wed 09-Jan-13 09:39:45

One of the advantages of here is that its not assumed that all mothers think about is nappies. Its one of the advantage of MN over the other site.

So long as someone can face the standard robust critism that MN comes with, and don't come across as disapproving of motherhood and all that entails*, then alls fine.

* with the possible exception of Xenia

msrisotto Wed 09-Jan-13 09:44:35

I'm here for the same reasons as you petfox! And What Slug said too. I love this place. Agree that the name nowhere near encapsulates the diversity of the place but "mums" is practically a derogatory term in the media so I think it's a good name if only to counter crap myths about yummy brainless mummies.

Absy Wed 09-Jan-13 09:44:40

This old thing.

MN was named about 12 years ago (IIRC) and I don't think at the time Justine et al thought it would turn into a monstrous behemoth what it is today, and they can't exactly change the name now to "www.anyonewhofeelslikeachatvaguelyrelatedtoparentingandothertopicsnet.com"

For one, it's not as snappy.

threesocksmorgan Wed 09-Jan-13 09:45:42

doesn't bother me if people arn't parents and on here, as long as they don't tell me how to parent

everlong Wed 09-Jan-13 09:45:51

Never give it a moments thought tbh.

IwantaPetFox Wed 09-Jan-13 09:47:45

That's a great point msrisotto! I don't think the name needs changing at all. I kind of wonder whether it also puts off a lot of the general internet idiots and trolls.

FingoFango Wed 09-Jan-13 09:47:58

Yes not sure about renaming it 'Adultsnet' would be a good idea........

Was thinking something to do with women, although there are men on here so that could be sexist.......... it is mainly women on here so that might work, something to do with being a discussion board for intelligent women .......can't think of a good name.

Mumsnet is too narrow

Loquace Wed 09-Jan-13 09:48:34

Adultsnet

Far too near AdultCheck phontically, if you say it quickly, for my liking grin

Do not wish to give people the entirely wrong impression when I explain I have been up half the night on a website.

It's never bothered me. Infact I keep trying to get my friend to join and read because I think she'd love it and she's not got dcs. It never occurred to me that she shouldn't.

everlong Wed 09-Jan-13 09:50:09

Hmm. I disagree fingo primarily MN is a parenting site.

Thumbwitch Wed 09-Jan-13 09:51:40

YANBU. Plenty of people on here have lots to offer but don't have children; glad they're here, tbh!

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 09:55:58

doesn't bother me if people arn't parents and on here, as long as they don't tell me how to parent

OK, but what about if they give advice on a thread you asked for advice on? A lot of non parents actually know a great deal about children, through work or family or friends. Would you discount some valuable advice they had given if you found out they were non-parents?

HeyHoHereWeGo Wed 09-Jan-13 10:02:02

I recently reacted badly to someone who does not have children starting a thread moaning about why a large family should get child benefit for all their children.
That sort of petty small mindedness makes me wonder why non-parents come on here - I mean I wouldn't be here reading about CB and nits unless I actually have children.
But then as you say, some topics are amazing, anyone would be inspired by feminism, by pedants corner, etc
So no, YANBU.

(would you like a child or four for a few days? trust me you will spend a LOT of time here then!!)

Labradorwhisperer Wed 09-Jan-13 10:02:17

I do think it is very sad that there are people who assume that those without children have no contribution to make on issues of child rearing. I think it's assumptions like this that do lead to confusion as to whether people without children are welcomed by everyone on this site. Whilst I may not be able to comment on every aspect of raising children, I would like to think that I could have a view that would help someone who really needed a second opinion, and I am sure there are many parents out there who would agree.

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Wed 09-Jan-13 10:03:47

I recently reacted badly to someone who does not have children starting a thread moaning about why a large family should get child benefit for all their children. That sort of petty small mindedness makes me wonder why non-parents come on here

That's not an opinion which is confined to those without children. Plenty of people with children hold it.

msrisotto Wed 09-Jan-13 10:04:37

Non parents can be childminders, nannies, teachers, social workers etc. Can have young siblings/cousins/nieces/nephews/friends with kids etc.

Advice can be had from non parents. Some people are sensitive to criticism though.

I'm not a parent and have no desire to be one. Think I followed a link to a thread in AIBU and got hooked, now I meander over to Chat, Books, Feminism and so on. I tend to avoid the threads explicitly about raising children as they hold little interest but it's a big site.

I am a Brownie leader and have picked up some tips along the way and have found myself much more thoughtful in supermarkets etc when I hear screaming babies. I don't automatically go into tutting, impatient mode - not always.

Although the other day I saw three thread titles in a row about pregnancy and thought oh bloody hell who wants to read about that then remembered the site I was on blush

IwantaPetFox Wed 09-Jan-13 10:15:27

Thanks for the offer HeyHo but, erm, I'm busy...forever grin

I know several child psychologists without children. I think they have quite a lot to contribute on the subject.

Personally, I've never been on any of the parenting-related threads, and esp not benefit or nit-related ones. Why would when there are far more interesting and important things to debate the merits of Richard Armitage dressed as a dwarf for instance ?

fluffyraggies Wed 09-Jan-13 10:21:57

Mumsnet
By parents for parents

Is what's at the top of the page.

I am a parent, to 3DCs, but i didn't find mumsnet through that fact. I found it by accident while googling about a hundred years ago.

While i find there is an undefinable integrity surounding the idea of a 'parenting site', i do find it sad that the name may be alienating men and people with no kids. I actually tend not to read many of the directly child rearing posts.

On the fence about the namechange therefore. Adultnet sounds porn'y to me, sorry grin

Personally i think it's much more than a 'parenting site'. When you take a look at all the topics to choose from - at a glance i'd say that, ooooh, only 10/20%ish of them are parenting related. Roughly.

For my money, anyone's welcome. (except under-bridge dwellers of course)

TraineeBabyCatcher Wed 09-Jan-13 10:26:34

I guess that its easy to forget that everyone doesnt have children/are trying for, with it being a parenting website by name, and also if you have used other parenting websites as there are few non parents on them.
I'm guilty of it, for sure. I'm not trying to say you shouldn't be here, we all have as much right as each other, I just forget that just because I came here because I'm a parent, doesn't mean others have.

I have previously asked why others are here but only out of interest as to how people have come across it.

IwantaPetFox Wed 09-Jan-13 10:27:01

I don't think the name of the site is such a problem. A glance through the threads by anyone with half a brain tells you it's very diverse and that most of it has nothing to do with kids. Plenty of companies start out small with one idea then expand to the point where their original name and aim become irrelevant. I think it's quite nice really!

FingoFango Wed 09-Jan-13 10:30:55

People without kids can have an opinion about child benefit - we are taxpayers who are funding it after all!

slug Wed 09-Jan-13 10:53:42

As can parents FingoFango. We pay taxes too hmm

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