Infertile, Childless, Childfree, DINKs, PANKs – Our Obsession with Labels

by Brandi Lytle
Photo of Card Catalog with some Drawers Open on Our Obsession with Labels Uniquely Me Infertility/Childless Blog on Not So Mommy

I’m an infertile woman.  But should I call myself infertile?  Is the term “childless” or “childfree” a better description?  Should I be more modern and label myself as a DINK?

What is our obsession with labels anyway?  Why do we insist on putting people in a box?

Ethnicity, please.

When Bruna arrived, we, of course, had to fill out a lot of paperwork for her to enroll at school.  And, of course, the question of ethnicity was asked with a multitude of options including both “Latino/Hispanic” and “Other.”  She looked at me and asked, “Am I Latina?”  I responded, “Do you think you are?”  Her answer, “No.”  So, I told her to mark “Other” and write “Brazilian” in the blank.

Now, because Brazil is in South America and South America is part of Latin America, I could have told Bruna that she is indeed Latina.  Brazilians do share many cultural similarities to the Spanish-speaking countries close to them.  But Bruna did not believe she is Latina and who am I to tell her that she is?

As for me, I know what box to check for my ethnicity.  It’s the kids part of my identity that I have a hard time with…

Fertility Status – Are you infertile, childless, childfree, or none of the above?

What label should I choose?!

Am I a PANK–Professional Aunt, No Kids?  Or perhaps a DINK–Dual Income, No Kids?  I guess, but I don’t like the “no kids” part.  Because I do have kids–just not in the traditional sense.

So, what about DM for Dog Mom?  But I’m married, so am I a MDM–Married Dog Mom?

What about DIPP for Dual Income, Pet Parent?  But do I really want to be a DIPP?

How about HI?  A Happy Infertile.  Can you be a happy infertile person?  Would that be frowned upon?

So maybe my hubby and I are HICs, or a Happy Infertile Couple.  I am an Oklahoma girl living in South Carolina, so I guess I might be a HIC…

But really, a HIC?!  Let’s try HIPP–Happy Infertile Pet Parent.  I kind of like being HIPP…

Honestly, I’m just having a bit of fun.  All my made-up acronyms actually stand for something else when you google them.

But my point with all this silliness is to just let people be.  Let yourself be.  We are all unique and honestly, we can’t be put in a box!  When we try to stuff ourselves into one, it gets pretty uncomfortable!

And that’s why I proudly place myself in a multitude of boxes…  My label–an infertile dog mom, aunt, host mom, wife, uniquely me blogger who tries to focus on good things and live this imperfectly perfect life…  Kind-of long though, huh?

So, maybe I should just stick with Not So Mommy…. 

Sound good?  I think so!  🙂


You might also like “Childless, not childfree.  Yes, the distinction matters.

Learn more about why the NotMom believes using the terms “childless” versus “childfree” really matters.


Photo Credit:  Chance Agrella of Freerange









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Sherry Stout August 19, 2017 - 10:43 am

Your acronyms made me smile?

Brandi Lytle August 21, 2017 - 10:19 am

Thanks! I got a giggle as well when I re-read this post. Sometimes, you just have to smile!

Sherry Stout August 19, 2017 - 10:33 am

Love. Your. Blog.

Brandi Lytle August 21, 2017 - 10:19 am



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