These days, it seems like a new acronym or slang word is being introduced every week. And, a lot of them seem like they’re part of insular, focused interest groups. It’s almost an initiation process to learn what these short abbreviations of phrases are.
The parenting world is no different. Instead of writing out full words, some parents like to be quick and use as few letters as possible to say what they mean. For the newbies who are googling ‘bedtime chaos,’ ‘potty training mishaps,’ or ‘teething nightmare’ at 2 a.m., it can be hard to figure out if you’re reading in your own language, sometimes. If you want to be able to read text messages, forum posts, comment sections or even articles on parenting, you’ve got to learn a bunch of new words.
But fear not! We’ve done our research, and are ready to teach you how to decode parenting acronyms used on Internet forums! You’ll sound like a cool, know-it-all pro in no time.
A list of parenting acronyms defined:
LO = Little One. This is the new label for your child, when you talk about him or her in the third person.
MoM = Mom of Multiples. This will surely get very confusing in sentences, even if you think you’re in the right headspace. We vote to scratch it. But if you do use it, remember that it only applies to moms of twins, triplets, and the like.
FTM = First Time Mom. No, not “Female to Male” and not, “Full Time Mom.”
SAHM or SAHD = Stay At Home Mom or Stay At Home Dad. So… this is how you convey that you’re not a money-earning, adult partner in the family.
WM = Working Mom. Makes a great title for a book or magazine, don’t you think? Except, what typical mom is not a “working” mom? See our point?
DD = Dear Daughter. We hope all your daughters are dear, though!
DS = Dear Son. Ditto for all your sons!
DSS or DSD = Dear Step Son or Dear Step Daughter. Yay, they are loved, too!
DH = Dear Husband. Yes, he gets one too.
DF = Dear Fiance. Or, see below for just-as-good options when talking to complete strangers…
SO = Significant Other. If you want to be vague about your partner’s status, here’s an alternative.
DXP – Dear Ex Partner. They’re only “dear” if you’re still on good terms, apparently! We haven’t found an acronym for the not-so-dear.
OH = Other Half. We’re going to assume this holds the same meaning as SO.
CIO = Cry It Out. An acronym for when parents want to describe their last option, when logic, words, bribes, or anything else won’t work. We think this could apply to adults too, if we’re truly honest with one another. Sometimes, we all just need to cry until everything feels better again.
BD = Baby Dancing. Ok, this needs two definitions. BD means you are trying to conceive by doing the, you know, in bed. It doesn’t mean “Baby Daddy” which we think would be more fitting for this one. But hey, we don’t make the rules.
TTC = Trying to Conceive. This makes a lot more sense than the double-definition-needed acronym above. But it sounds so close to “TLC,” we’d understand if you mixed them up by accident!
DTD = Do The Deed. Another way of not saying what we know you understand, but won’t say.
STTN = Sleep Through The Night. It might be harder to memorize this one than to just type out what you want to say. Our two cents.
BC = Before Children or Birth Control. It’s not “Because,” which we would have thought it to be, had we not looked this up…Either way you’ll have to interpret this one in context.
HPT = Home Pregnancy Test. Another one that’s hard to remember, flat out.
BW = Blood Week. As in, your period. Not one week a year to donate blood. Though, that would be a good idea, just morally speaking.
PG = Pregnant. Use it, but keep it PG, folks! Just joking.
AI = Artificial Insemination. And here you probably thought you’d be able to guess at least one! It’s not “Artificial Intelligence,” – at least not in this context.
IVF = In Vitro Fertilization. Yes, you did get this one right. Congratulations, your parenting lingo is growing!
MS = Morning Sickness. No, not the disease. Imagine misinterpreting this one in a forum! Ha!
EDD = Estimated Due Date. We can see how this would catch on. Kind of like, “TBD,” only much more specific to pregnancy contexts. And then, never used again after you’re done having kids.
US = UltraSound. Not the famous, getting-great-again, U-S-of-A. Just UltraSound. Bet you feel tricked.
VBAC = Vaginal Birth After Cesarean. If you’re TTC, you may not have heard of this as being a ‘thing.’ But before you go talking about it with your doctor, be sure to ask if they know what the acronym stands for.
L&D = Labour And Delivery. Imagine this being on hospital signs when you rush in all panicked and say, “my baby’s coming!” and a nurse yells, “Go to L&D”! And your SO and DXP, holding your DS or DD are like, “what?”
FF = Formula Feeding. As opposed to breastfeeding, which is, of course our next acronym…
BF = Breast Feeding. Not your best friend (we mean, the person). But imagine if we honoured our besties on these parenting forums, by giving them their very own acronym. Using “BFF” like all other forums will have to do.
EBF = Exclusively Breast Feeding or Extended Breast Feeding. It’s a little ‘extra’ on the above acronym. By the way, there’s also, “EN” for Extended Nursing, in case you see it out there, and want to fit in.
EP = Exclusively Pumping. Well, if you’re going to use breastfeeding acronyms, you might as well throw this one in the mix, too.
NIP – Nursing in Public. A hotly debated topic, and now it has its own acronym, to go with all the Internet’s opinions.
MIL = Mother In Law. When you don’t want her to know you’re talking about her, lol. Hopefully she’s not part of the ‘forum generation,’ and won’t figure it out.
FIL = Father in Law. Same as above.
OWT = Old Wives Tale. This is what you use when you don’t want your MIL, or someone else’s, to know that you don’t believe a word they say when it comes to your baby.
LC = Lactation Consultant. Let’s just hope your non-nursing friends will understand this, if you use it around them. If not, just act like, “oh, you didn’t know?”
BLW = Baby Led Weaning. This is when you skip the mush, and go straight to solids. Our take is: but why?
PPD = Postpartum Depression. An important topic, it deserves an acronym we all know – and not just among parents. Like “OCD” or “BPD,” let’s talk about mental health more!
AP = Attachment Parenting. This could get very confusing, very fast, since AP is used in multiple other contexts, like “Advanced Placement,” “Accounts Payable,” “Assistant Producer,” “As Purchased,” “Assets Protection,” “Associated Press” (writing style), “Access Point” and so many other things…So, read context carefully with this one. We wrote about attachment parenting and daycare, here, by the way.
Are there more parenting forum acronyms? You bet!
If you’re surprised by all of the above (or should we say, AOTA?), you’ll be shocked to learn that there are acronyms for almost all steps of pregnancy, delivery, parenting and more. Some of them you’ll barely ever use, unless you get into sub-sub groups of mommy forums and comments (notice many seem to come out of female perspectives and subjects?). But the ones we listed above will hopefully get you started in this world of hip parenting.
And if you just love learning new parent-to-parent lingo, keep in mind that you can google many more.