‘Birthing parent’ or ‘mother’? Moms weigh in on teachers union proposal

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LEESBURG, Va. – Moms in the Old Dominion shared whether they preferred to be called a “birthing parent” over “mother.”

“I personally prefer being called ‘mother.’ Not a ‘birthing parent,’” one woman said. “I birthed my child. I don’t want to be called a ‘birthing parent.’” 

She added, however, that it was fine if someone wasn’t comfortable being called “mother.”

The National Education Association, the largest teachers union, proposed a resolution Wednesday that would change the word “mother” in contracts to “birthing parent” to be more inclusive to trans parents. The White House refused to comment on the consideration, which did not receive a vote.

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Mothers gave Fox News mixed answers about their preference, with some criticizing the term “birthing parent,” while others praised it or said they were comfortable with it.

Virginia mom says she prefers to be called

Virginia mom says she prefers to be called “mother” over “birthing parent.” (Fox News Digital/Megan Myers)

The “birthing parent” label “takes the specialness out of being a mom,” a Leesburg mother said.

But Margie, also of Leesburg, said: “I’m fine with that. Anything to make people feel comfortable.” 

“Take down the walls,” she added. “Take down the barriers.”

And Thea, from Maryland, said she preferred to be called “mother,” but people should go by their own preference.

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Becky Pringle, president of the National Education Association, speaks during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing. Photographer: Andrew Harnik/AP/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Becky Pringle, president of the National Education Association, speaks during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing. Photographer: Andrew Harnik/AP/Bloomberg via Getty Images
(Andrew Harnik/AP/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Linda, a mother who adopted two children, shared her distinct perspective.

“I would feel excluded by the children I adopted,” Linda told Fox News. “Is that an adoptive parent as well? Is that a surrogate parent as well?”

“What would constitute a birthing parent?” she continued, noting that the phrase, to her, sounds less inclusive.

Meanwhile, Robin, a mother of two, said: “Changing from mother to birthing parent sounds great. It doesn’t exclude anyone.”

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Linda, a mother of two adopted children, says the term

Linda, a mother of two adopted children, says the term “birthing parent” would make her feel excluded. (Fox News Digital/Megan Myers)

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“If someone called me a birthing parent, it wouldn’t bother me,” Robin added.

The NEA proposed resolution said “the language is an inclusive reflection of how LGBTQIA+ members build families.” But some mothers said the teachers union’s proposed language could be improved for inclusivity.

“I think the word ‘parent’ is inclusive,” Sarah, from Leesburg, said. “I just don’t understand why you need to designate.”

Megan Myers is an associate producer/writer for Fox News Digital Originals. Follow her on Twitter @meglmyers