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Thu Feb 20, 2014, 12:46 AM

Does a woman cease to exist when she gives birth?

While we're on gender-related issues...

Last night, my paper published a column about this young lady:



Her name is Tracey Brown Fouche, and she's been highly energetic since she graduated from one of our local high schools ten years ago: she won Miss Idaho in the Miss America system in 2006 THEN won Miss Idaho in the Miss USA system in 2008, became an attorney, worked with the homeless in East LA, and has raised a lot of money for breast cancer research. We wrote about her because she's started a new law practice specializing exclusively in adoption law worldwide. If you want to adopt a child from some country no one ever heard of before, Tracey Brown Fouche can help square you away.

How she was introduced in the column: "The wife, mother and lawyer..." In that order.

She's not the only one. It matters not whether you're getting your medical license, receiving a great civic honor, being promoted to Colonel in the Air Force, reporting that you're a crime victim, being sued, getting caught for DWI, or getting sent to prison, your first child erases for all time the possibility of you ever being referred to as a woman. From the instant that kid's feet meet free air, you will until the day your child starts having children of his or her own be referred to as "mother." (And once your child has reproduced, you will never again be called anything but "grandmother."

So...whatcha think? Should a woman who's had kids be referred to as "mother" or "grandmother" every time she's mentioned, or only when it's germane to the occasion?

24 replies, 2829 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Does a woman cease to exist when she gives birth? (Original post)
jmowreader Feb 2014 OP
pkdu Feb 2014 #1
TreasonousBastard Feb 2014 #2
1awake Feb 2014 #17
elleng Feb 2014 #3
Egalitarian Thug Feb 2014 #4
Orrex Feb 2014 #5
pnwmom Feb 2014 #6
jmowreader Feb 2014 #13
pnwmom Feb 2014 #18
REP Feb 2014 #7
jberryhill Feb 2014 #8
alphafemale Feb 2014 #24
cherokeeprogressive Feb 2014 #9
jmowreader Feb 2014 #14
get the red out Feb 2014 #10
LuvNewcastle Feb 2014 #11
Name removed Feb 2014 #12
The Straight Story Feb 2014 #15
jmowreader Feb 2014 #21
snooper2 Feb 2014 #16
Xithras Feb 2014 #19
LineNew Reply .
MO_Moderate Feb 2014 #20
Starry Messenger Feb 2014 #22
Harmony Blue Feb 2014 #23

Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 12:57 AM

1. The so called Christian Right think she ceases to exist as soon as she conceives. Nt

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 12:58 AM

2. I always think that's odd, but...

I think a lot of things are odd. Why, for instance, is it assumed that a woman will wear a wedding ring, but for a man it's optional?

Somewhere down underneath all of this is some fundamental, and probably ancient, definition of the sexes that we don't fully understand, but keep dealing with anyway.

I think there is some thought of a woman as property underneath a lot of this, but not property in modern terms. More like 10,000 years ago when a woman of childbearing age was in danger of being stolen by the tribe over the hill.

(Although, there's no denying some do consider women property in modern terms. Too many.)

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Response to TreasonousBastard (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:18 PM

17. well...

Why, for instance, is it assumed that a woman will wear a wedding ring, but for a man it's optional?


I have never seen this optional, and it definitely wouldn't be in my house, nor would I want it to be.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:00 AM

3. Identifier should be germane to the context.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:01 AM

4. When she submits to a man.

 

Just an aside, humans normally enter the world head first.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:01 AM

5. Whatever

She basically ceases to exist as soon as she might possibly become pregnant.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:03 AM

6. What's wrong with calling her "the wife, mother and lawyer"?

If she had been a man, wouldn't they be calling Tracey, "the husband, father, and lawyer"?

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #6)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 02:50 PM

13. No. Tracy the man would be "the 28-year-old attorney from Post Falls"

I have probably printed 500 profiles of successful men and never has one described him as a husband and father. We'll always include it somewhere, but a successful man is always described as lawyer, architect, mayor, cardiologist, ophthalmologist, quack, city planner, arborist, boatbuilder, events planner or whatever he does for a living, and the women are always described as mothers.

We did one on a quiverfull tree surgeon, and in the first paragraph we gave a little opening thing about the splendor of tree surgery, in the second graf described his firm with its 80 workers and its certifications and awards, and opened the third with "Jones, who lives in Smalltown with his wife Bountiful and eleven children" (obviously neither the name of his hometown or wife). The story we did about the last mayor had as its first graf a blurb about her retirement as mayor then opened the second graf with "the 73-year-old grandmother of nine..." who also owns a successful business. Totally different situation.

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Response to jmowreader (Reply #13)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:25 PM

18. In case you didn't notice, I agree. That's what the sarcasm smilie was for. n/t

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:18 AM

7. Pretty much, and it's annoying as hell

Women my mother's age are usually referred to as 'grandmothers' or 'grandmotherly' and my mother is neither, but her age and gender assigns her a role she doesn't have (or want). Older men are usually not described as grandfathers, or at least not in the first paragraph.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 01:42 AM

8. No

 

According to the right a woman's life ends at conception.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #8)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 07:33 PM

24. Her conception in the womb. nt

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 02:02 AM

9. Am I missing something here? Mother came SECOND.

 

I'd have thought you'd be MORE pissed off that she was FIRST described as a WIFE. As in subservient to a HUSBAND. Just as Mrs. Potato Head couldn't be Ms. Potato Head... she had to be Mrs. Potato Head. What? She couldn't make it on her OWN?

Geez, I have no idea how to fight these gender wars, and what SHOULD and what SHOULD NOT piss someone off.

In the immortal words of Tom Jones, whose mere presence motivates females to throw their panties onto the stage... "She's a Lady... Whoa Whoa Whoa She's a Lady..."

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=105x5512356

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Response to cherokeeprogressive (Reply #9)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:07 PM

14. They threw it in there for a reason

Kootenai County, Idaho, is the single motherhood capital of the Northwest. There is absolutely no stigma against unwed motherhood here. It's noteworthy when a child's parents have the same last name. We print lots of stories about high school athletes, and always print the parents' names.

Mother and child have same last name, father has different name is most popular
Then all three people have same last name
Next we have the student and his/her mother, father not mentioned
Occasionally father, mother and student will all have different names
And a couple times I've seen mom and dad share a name and the child have a completely different one

Getting married, having kids with him and staying together is not the default condition here. Which is why it's noteworthy.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 06:37 AM

10. This is a huge pet peeve of mine

Actually it infuriates me. Women are constantly identified by their relationship to other people rather than as individual human beings in their own right. This has angered me my whole life.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 07:02 AM

11. I don't see it that way, at least not with my women friends.

I don't think differently of the women with kids than I do the single women. We don't talk about kids and husbands/boyfriends much, we talk about ourselves and the past and how things have changed. I don't see a lot of difference between the women with kids and the ones without them when we talk about those things.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)


Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:12 PM

15. Here is the article:

http://www.cdapress.com/columns/kerri_thoreson/article_8c102a80-e807-548e-990f-bcafc5dcc619.html

Also introduced in it:

John Blanchette of Post Falls is a die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan and the proof can be seen in the large Cowboys star tattoo on his neck, a daughter named Dallas and a dog named Emmitt, as in Smith.

and

If you watched Olympic ice skating this week and saw American figure skates Meryl Davis and Charlie White win the first gold medal for the U.S. in an Olympic ice dancing event, there's a bit of a local connection. Working with the duo on choreography for the competition was Derek Hough of "Dancing with the Stars" fame. Derek's dad Bruce graduated from Coeur d'Alene High School in 1972 and his grandparents Bob and Colleen Hough are longtime Coeur d'Alene residents.

Looks like the writer was all over the board.

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Response to The Straight Story (Reply #15)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 06:07 PM

21. Check out the "Main Street" column on our site

She does the kind of "happenings in our small town" piece you'd expect to find in a weekly.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:15 PM

16. well, we refer to our pets as momma kitty or daddy kitty

 

maybe we should start there!

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:31 PM

19. I think it really depends on what the woman wants.

Of course, most parents I know consider parenthood to be a bigger part of their lives than their jobs. If you were a mother, a lawyer, and a wife, and you had to put them in order of importance, what would your order be? Most of the married parents I know would put in in the order of father-mother/wife-husband/"whatever I do for a paycheck". It's an unfortunate few who put their jobs ahead of their kids.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 03:40 PM

20. .

 

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 06:08 PM

22. We're practically never allowed to exist in the first place.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Thu Feb 20, 2014, 06:10 PM

23. I know this may come as a shock to some people

but some people are proud of being parents. I do not have children or a desire to have children but there are people out there that are proud of being a parent..a mother or a father

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