Three totally valid reasons I can't stand the phrase 'stay-at-home-mum'
A neighbour recently asked me if I was a full-time wife. True story.
I'll just leave that hang there with you for a moment. A full time wife. Like, there are seventy-four different things wrong with that sentence.
The neighbour in question is male, perhaps in his early fifties, so not exactly so old school that he wouldn't have the cop on to realise how offensive a question that is in this day and age.
What does that even mean, 'a full time wife?' That I am constantly and whole heartedly committed to Alan's emotional and physical wellbeing, and exist only to serve his needs?
Am. I. Fuck.
It got me to thinking about other terms that women have been 'gifted' when they are elect to raise their kids as a full-time gig, and I might actually hate them all.
1. A housewife
I remember being at a shopping centre with my mum once and she was in the process of filling out a survey. When she finished, the man asked her if she was a housewife as her 'occupation' and she took the form back and ripped it up in front of his face because she was so offended by his presumption. I now know where I get my feminist streak from. But 'housewife', really? Actually married to the house? Bethrothed to the kitchen sink? Give me a break.
2. A homemaker
Do I build houses? No I do not. Have you ever seen me donn a tool belt, a hard hat and direct a bulldozer towards the outline of a foundation for anyone's future home? No, you have not. I am not a home maker. I like making things in my home, like cupcakes, mojitos and babies. But after that, you're on your own mate.
3. Stay at home mum
I can't cope with this. It implies to me that you have elected to lock yourself and the children inside the house, resolutely refusing to leave the four walls and that if anyone needs you, you can be found felt crafting at the kitchen table from 7am - 7pm until your husband comes home. Surely all of the running around from house to school, to playdates, to after school activities, to relatives houses, to doctor's appointments, to the supermarket, kiddie hairdressers, public health centre, toy store, book shop, dog groomers.. means you are the exact opposite of a stay at home mum?
So the next time someone asks you if you're a 'full-time wife' (and you're done throwing the filthies at them), can you repeat this reply after me: 'I actually work from home 24/7. What do you do?'.
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