New Words For 'Mother' and 'Father' | 22 Words

Academics have suggested ditching terms like "mother" and "father" and after seeing the alternatives, it's received a big response online...

Now, let's start with the facts.


What exactly is gender dysphoria?

Gender dysphoria involves a conflict between a person's sex and the gender with which he, she, or they identify with.

People with gender dysphoria experience high levels of discomfort with their own bodies, and they often report feeling as if it isn't their own.

It is more commonly known as being "transgender."


People who are transgender more than often realize that they are from a very young age.

Children are able to experience gender dysphoria.

And this is when the majority of trans people realize this conflict.

It is a heartbreaking reality that many trans children face rejection from their families.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, studies have shown that familial rejection can lead to the LGBTQ+ youth engaging in behaviors and activities that endanger their health.

It can trigger depression and other mental health issues.

And, in some extreme cases, can lead to homelessness and suicide.

Family support is one of the most important things for a child coming out as trans.


Child welfare expert, Caitlin Ryan, stated that “family acceptance predicts greater self-esteem, social support, and general health status," for LGBTQ+ youth.

"It also protects against depression, substance abuse, and suicidal ideation and behaviors."

"Issues for which transgender youth are at disproportionate risk."

Coming out as transgender and beginning the transition will never be easy...


Despite this being what a person desires, the first few steps into transition are never easy, especially for a child.

Enduring taunting in the school corridors from their peers who are too uninformed to understand the situation is a sad reality for many trans children.

But there are signs of progress ...

Thankfully, the LGBTQ+ community is bigger than ever today.


There are countless organizations around the world that work hard together purely to support people, especially children, of the transgender community.

Families around the world are now more accepting than ever...


But that doesn't mean the fight is over.

One important aspect of trans rights is changing our language around the issue.

Outdated gendered terms only serve to reiterate outdated ideas.

As one story has proven today.

As more and more trans and non binary people experience birth, it's time we come up with a better way to talk about it!

Australia's National University has updated it's Gender Institute Handbook to do just that.


Offering new words for "mother and "father" in order to be "inclusive of every voice," as per 7 News.

But it's caused quite a stir online...

The suggestion aims to introduce trans-friendly language into the workplace and learning landscape.


Something that many places are currently missing.

The handbook now suggests using the term "gestational" or "birthing-parent" rather than "mother."


While "non-gestational" or "non-birthing parent" is suggested to replace the term "father."

And "chest-feeding" is suggested to replace "breast-feeding."

As per 7 News, the handbook reads, "When discussing childbirth, use the terms 'gestational' or 'birthing' parent rather than 'mother', and the terms 'non-gestational' or 'non-birthing' parent rather than 'father."


"While many students will identify as 'mothers' or 'fathers', using these terms alone to describe parenthood excludes those who do not identify with gender-binaries."

"This non-gendered language is particularly important in clinical or abstract academic discussions of childbirth and parenthood, both to recognise the identities of students in the class, and to model inclusive behaviour for students entering clinical practice."


A ANU spokesperson who spoke to 7 News said, "This is a guide produced by a research institute that, among its many areas of focus, examines how to improve gender equity and inclusiveness in our society."

"The guide is an academic output produced by experts who are free to research in their field of expertise under our policies on academic freedom."


"This document is not an official ANU policy, process or official prescription to staff and students."

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