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aibu to hate this expression?

(192 Posts)
ginbin54 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:26:02

The expression "full time mother" drives me nuts! It's as if when you leave the house to go to work you stop being their mums. We are all full time mum's whether we are stay at home or have to go out to work.

Finola1step Sun 23-Feb-14 15:27:26


Finola1step Sun 23-Feb-14 15:31:27


Very old fashioned. I have wondered if people still use it (instead of SAHP) because it is reveals what they truly think - that working mothers are abdicating their parental duties.

And it is always working mothers, never working fathers. I am a parent 24/7 as is my DH. This dies not change when one if us is at work.

ginbin54 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:31:35


Writerwannabe83 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:35:43

I think they say it because if they were asked, "So, what do you do?" and they just said, "I'm a mother" people would think, "And? So are a million other women....."

Maybe by classing themselves as being a 'full time mother' they think it gives them a higher status than all the other working mothers....

It really, really annoys me too - and I always grimace inside when a women uses that term to describe herself.

ginbin54 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:36:57

Sorry Finola I read your post saying "very" & thought you were saying IWBU! That's when I posted "why".

TheRealAmandaClarke Sun 23-Feb-14 15:42:13

Hmmm. YAbu really.
I agree some of these terms can be divisive, but it's just a way of saying SAHP, or (I am very old) "housewife".
If we are defined by our "work" then either a SAHP says "nothing" or "FT mum" in response to the question about what they do.
SAHP always sounds long-winded to me.
I don't think ppl mean to suggest that WOHMs are not parents when they are not at home........unless if they feel backed into a corner about it.

NoArmaniNoPunani Sun 23-Feb-14 15:44:38

I thought it was a more modern way of saying housewife.

ginbin54 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:50:13

Never feel "backed into a corner by it", just don't like the implication I am a part-time mum because I (and DH) have no other option but to work outside the home.

HadABadDay2014 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:52:02

Every single mother is a full time mother. There is no time sheets no clocking off.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sun 23-Feb-14 15:52:31

I think you're over thinking it.

whomadeyougod Sun 23-Feb-14 15:55:29

they stay at home and look after their kids , others go to work and their kids are looked after by some one else , i suppose they can say they are child minders .

CoffeeTea103 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:57:09

Yanbu, as much as the "full time mummy". I guess it's something to validate themselves.

WooWooOwl Sun 23-Feb-14 15:58:18

YANBU. It is irritating and it implies that mothers who work are not full time mothers, so that makes it bullshit.

verdiletta Sun 23-Feb-14 16:00:56

It just means you 'do mothering' (eg nappies, stories, shouting at kids etc) full time. When you're at work you're still a full time mum, but you're not doing full time mothering, you're doing other things as well. Does that make sense?
I don't think people mean to downgrade working mums, just to describe what they do.

NoArmaniNoPunani Sun 23-Feb-14 16:03:44

just don't like the implication I am a part-time mum because I (and DH) have no other option but to work outside the home.

You seem to be judging women who work because they want to with this statement.

Writerwannabe83 Sun 23-Feb-14 16:04:26

So why can't they call themselves Full Time Motherers?? smile

Do they become part time Motherers when their child starts school?

People should stick to Housewife - less confusing and less offensive to working parents. Unless the woman isn't married of course, maybe that's why the term has died away....

TheRealAmandaClarke Sun 23-Feb-14 16:04:33

This whole subject is exhausting and basically involves treading on eggshells.
If someone says to you that you're a pt mum because you work then I can see why that would piss you off.
But I don't think ppl are really saying that. It's just, as someone else said, a more modern term for "housewife" which was a bit derogatory.
What are ppl supposed to say? What would keep you happy?

And it's not just a matter of not "clocking off" is it? I have a professional job. I have not had to "clock off" since my teen Saturday job. When I am not at work I am still a [job that I do] but I work pt. so I am a pt [job that I do]
if I were a sahm I'm not sure what I would say if ppl asked me what I did tbh. I don't like the term sahm (I don't find it offensicpve, it just seems a bit of a funny term to my ears) so maybe I would say I was a ft mum, or a housewife or I might say "oh nothing. I just watch JK all day because kids look after themselves doncha know"

HappyMummyOfOne Sun 23-Feb-14 16:10:27

Only ever heard it on MN and its awful, what will those who use it call themselves whilst their child is at school or at a friends for tea etc.

The odd person i know that doesnt work says housewife or not working right now.

Writerwannabe83 Sun 23-Feb-14 16:11:07

"What do you do?"

"I stay at home with the children"

What's wrong with just saying that? Surely it's not remotely offensive to anyone.

QueenTea33 Sun 23-Feb-14 16:11:10

Yanbu. I hate that, too. I only went back to work when my youngest was 5 and would refer to myself as a sahm. If you have kids, it goes without saying that you're a full time parent, whatever you do/don't do for a living.

The thing that boils my piss at the moment is the amount of "full time yummy mummies" on my Facebook. To me, that implies they had babies so they can claim benefits and spend the money on fake tan, nails, hair, eyelashes and other such shit.

Sorry, got a bit ranty there!

TheRealAmandaClarke Sun 23-Feb-14 16:16:57

I think it's a bit precious to, try to dictate to sahms which terms they should use to describe their role.

TheRealAmandaClarke Sun 23-Feb-14 16:19:18

Yes. It's annoying that ppl claim benefits and spend that on superficial luxuries when workingppl often have less expendable income.
Bit that's a separate issue IMHO.

SliceOfLime Sun 23-Feb-14 16:22:07

I think people read too much into it - I would bet that a person saying it says it without thinking, just as a way of describing their 'full time job' so I don't find it an annoying phrase.

Bowlersarm Sun 23-Feb-14 16:23:31

Christ, it's a bloody minefield as to what you can be called and by whom.

I thought I was a SAHM, until MN pointed out as my DC are in full time school I'm just a SAH living off DH earning a wage. Thanks MN for pointing out I'm a lazy arse.

I think the term housewife should be allowed back, as i am a wife whose main concern is the house/home. Although that ain't ever going to happen because not everyone who is at home is a wife etc etc

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