I’d like to put a motion forward to humankind that we abolish the word Mompreneur.
For that matter, I think we should abolish the title “Working Mom” while we’re at it.
Before the upheaval in the comment section, let me divulge.
When I go to the bank to open a business account, no one asks me if I am a Mompreneur or an entrepreneur.
When I meet a client to pitch an idea, I don’t introduce myself as a working Mom.
Fathers who own businesses are not referred to as Dadprenuers or working fathers.
I put so much work into being a business owner, I don’t want my kids to get any of that credit or discredit what I do.
One of the main inequalities is that when a woman takes time off to heal and nurture her new human, the damage that does to her employability, or career stance is undeniable. We are entitled here in Canada to have our jobs protected for when we come back. However, I myself have been asked in my 20’s in an interview, if I had planned on having kids soon because they didn’t want to "spend all this money training me if I was just going to go off and get pregnant." This was in 2012. I was 22 and had no intentions of having children. Had I been where I am at now in life, I can assure you this conversation would not have gone over the same way. The hard truth is there is an inequality in the workplace. This isn’t something we can deny. I watched a cartoon the other day that used the inequality as a joke. “My Dad says that when you count in maternity leave, you DO get equal pay”.
So let me tell you that when I say the world Mompreneur is actually a very damaging and condescending term, know that I speak of a place of experience.
At 16-22 I was more employable than I am at 32 with two children. Why? Because employers see my children, and their priority level in my life, as risk and liability. I may not be able to get to work due to illness, emergency, or other priorities higher than my job. Employers are looking for someone to raise their business and dreams like they’re own children. The only problem is, they want your only child to be their business.
I used to work for a hiring firm in my 20s, moved to managing and hiring for several different places including a very prominent tech company. I managed a staff of 350 people, 90% of that staff was male. This is a real thing. When a woman comes and drops off her resume and says she needs to be gone by 3 every day to pick up her children, her resume is moved to the bottom.
When businesses make room for pumping mothers, extra time off for leave, or empathy towards work-life balance, these companies are praised. What an AMAZING organization, they’ve gone above and beyond to advocate for women and mothers. These companies are rarities, not the standard. The exception, not the rule. There is a reason they are applauded because they are different.
The standard is a pregnant showing woman, have the hardest time becoming employed and as a Mother who also hired for a recruiting company, I know this title is used to balance risk assessment in my employability.
Instead of going back into the workforce after having children, I used the opportunity to grow a successful business, one I had started before having children. One that I work tirelessly at. I make child care arrangements, pick up and drop offs, working after they go to bed until I fall asleep at my desk.
Does it matter that I landed that contract the same time as making lunch?
While it would look great for my multitasking skills, any skills I learned while actually being a mother are not considered transferable in the workforce. Nothing about becoming a Mother has made anything more equal, or attainable in my career. As a photographer, I may have an extra in with the family photos, but men who don’t have children can sit in front of a computer all day marketing and exposing their business.
They can leave on a whim and travel to any client they need to.
While I try to keep up and pretend I can do the same, the truth is I can not. Between 6 and 8, either time clock, is one of the times people check social media the most. These two times for me are my busiest as a Mom. I need to reach the same amount of people marketing at midnight, as my male or non-parent counterpart reached at 7pm on a Wednesday. This is impossible. Do I shout from the rooftops that this is inequality and it needs to change? No.
I will find my way around the inequality, all I ask is that you don’t label and discriminate against my entrepreneurial efforts by categorizing me differently than my female and male counterparts without children.
I get and understand the well-meaning behind it. Look at this super mom go, raising a business and babies. She deserves her very own title.
The well-meaning is there but the truth is the title is completely disrespectful to my real, bill paying, stable business I have managed to cultivate before I had children.
Before I had my boys, I would introduce myself as a business owner. Now if I say I’m an entrepreneur I often get back,
“But you have kids so you’re a Mompreneur”
My business is its own entity, child, and division in my life. Enough of my life has been blended into being a Mom that I feel this is my boundary.
I will no longer let motherhood take over this too. My career deserves as much respect as a woman’s business without children.
I am not a Mompreneur, working Mom, or Stay at home Mom with a hobby on the side.
I am an entrepreneur who took a risk on herself and went after her dreams. I am a business owner who stays up late, works odd hours and commits more than 24 hours of work into my day. I am just like every other person who works.
The only difference is, you can’t see past that I do this while raising two amazing boys.
I can though.
My children are going to grow and so will I. I can not tell them to reach for the stars, they have to see me do it.
I worked hard to be my own person after having children. To divide being a mother from everything else I have accomplished. It seems when you become a Mom it should be all-encompassing. Which is partly true, and natural. The reality is though, that little baby is going to grow up quicker than you’d like. Are you still going to be a Mompreneur when your child is a teenager or moves out? When do I lose that title, when did I get it?
Either way, I’d like to return it. It doesn’t fit, it’s not working for us and I think it’s a word we need to collectively agree to discontinue.
I am an entrepreneur and a Mother.
This is not a compound title.
This is two separate full-time titles I work for and earned.
take your compound word back.
Our society needs to see that I am more, not less.