A Normal Person’s Guide To Mumsnet Slang. What An Unnecessary Evil
Welcome to a normal person’s guide to Mumsnet slang. This is something that I feel that many parents, both new and old, will have encountered as they browsed the world of new parent forums and will, at some point, have all asked the same question as I did.
What in the actual hell are they all talking about?
For those of you not in the loop about this (and its a fucking dreadful loop, make no mistake), I’m about to take you on a journey through time, space and birth boards as we ponder the question of acronyms, and how necessary they actually are in this context. The life of a pregnant woman/new mother is complex enough, but here on the internet, we clearly like to take things one step further, linguistically speaking.
Apparently, the boards of Mumsnet/Netmums/Babycentre dwellers are reserved specifically for those with the cognitive stones necessary to decipher such code as ‘WYOO’, ‘DD1′, DS2’, ‘DTD’ and so on and so forth.
Still lost? Didn’t you hear? Full sentences are just SO uncool, you guys.
Learning a new language…sort of
Dipping my swollen toes into the water of the online pregnancy world a few years ago, I first encountered this alien lingo via some of the Babycentre birth boards. Mumsnet came later…there are some truly, truly dreadful people on there, but that’s another post entirely. Anyway, whilst duly surfing through such joyous topics as ‘help…strange discharge’ and ‘is it normal to eat dog food while pregnant?’, I encountered a whole array of new acronyms that seemed way too lazy to actually be real.
Now, I’m a writer, but my background is that of a linguist. No, really, I have a BA in Modern Foreign Languages and a Master’s Degree in Applied Linguistics. So please believe me when I tell you that words are my bag and always have been. I love a bit of linguistic flexibility as much as the next person. But this? This just felt wrong.
After weeks of trying to decode this bullshit, I finally came up with a definitive guide to the laziest set of acronyms I’ve ever encountered. As I’m a generous soul, I’ve condensed most of it down for you to refer to here, should you ever find yourself in the unfortunate position of having to Google what the fuck these women are talking about.
Mumsnet acronyms (in no particular order):
DD – ‘darling daughter’ (vom)
DS – ‘darling son’ (really)
DTD – ‘do the deed’ (JUST SAY SEX FFS)
BM – ‘bowel movement’ (again, poo is fine)
CM – ‘cervical mucus’ (because obviously that’s too gross to actually type. Oh, wait)
DH – ‘darling husband’ (the irony of this when most posts are distinctly un-darling like)
AF – ‘Aunt Flo’ (PERIOD. THE WORD IS PERIOD)
POAS – ‘pee on a stick’ (I literally wish I was kidding but no seriously, POAS)
AIBU – ‘am I being unreasonable? (possibly not but you’re certainly being a prick – see also YANBU and YABU)
WYOO – ‘what’s your opinion on’ (fuck me, honestly)
I could go on. But I’ll be honest, I really don’t want to and hopefully, you’ve been able to get the gist. Some of these bizarre concoctions I had to actually Google because they were just that difficult to work out. But realistically, if you’re old enough to have sex and then be pregnant, then I’m fairly sure you’re old enough to type out the words ‘pregnancy test’ without having to resort to such lexical bullshit as ‘POAS’. It’s just fucking lazy. And weird. Oh so very, very weird.
It seems trivial, but you try making your way through a Mumsnet thread which is peppered with these acronyms and see if you don’t want to scream into a pillow after about five minutes.
Seriously, I am not a fan of this kind of crap at all. Just use English. Plain old English. We’ve got an incredibly rich and diverse language, can we use it, please? It’s a slippery slope from this to our written skills dying out completely.
Possibly a bit dramatic, but I think I’ve got a point.