In the military community, especially the online military community, dependapotamus is a 4-letter word. An insult. Kind of like the c-word and b-word of milspouse-land.
If you have no idea what a “dependapotamus” is, check out the definition on Urban Dictionary:
Dependapotamus: Traditionally a service-members dependent who is a “stay at home mom” that doesn’t do a damn thing all day besides sitting on the couch looking remarkably similar to Jabba the Hutt leaching off of military benefits and eating anything that gets too close.
Are you as appalled as I am that dependapotamus has its own entry in the Urban Dictionary?
Secondly, who is spreading the myth of the dependapotamus?
Let’s break this down based on the definition.
A Dependapotamus Is A Stay-At-Home Mom
I think stay-at-home moms get enough flak from the rest of the public, but when we are hearing it from other moms it’s even worse.
What is wrong with being a stay at home mom? If you have children and work, you pay someone to watch your child, and that is acceptable, obviously. But if you choose to not work watching your own child is suddenly a deplorable thing to do?
Newsflash, if you are paying someone to do the same thing a stay at home mom does, it’s not a piece of cake.
A Dependapotamus Does Nothing All Day
Like literally nothing? I’m pretty sure even us stay at home moms do SOMETHING. After all, I do have to get up and refresh my bon bon supply between soap operas. (Please tell me you’re sensing the sarcasm here.)
A Dependapotamus Resembles Jabba the Hut
I don’t even know what to say to this one. We all know that American women struggle with body image issues. And name-calling like this only goes to illustrate how acceptable weight discrimination is in our society. This is just uncalled for and unproductive and down right mean.
The Dependapotamus Is Endangered, If Not Extinct
Let’s be clear. With every stereotype, there comes a bit of truth. We’d be totally naive to think that that there isn’t a military spouse out there that fits this definition, but to perpetuate this as the rule and not the exception is a huge problem.
You will usually see this term used by spouses on “support” sites. Spouse on spouse bullying is a big issue in the military world. As military spouses, we are own biggest critics and enemies. No matter what kind of life you want to live there will be a milspouse bully or many bullies who want to judge you.
It is no shock that many spouses feel the need to stay away from “support” sites that are overrun with meanness and bullying. Based on some military spouse websites you would think so called “dependas” were overrunning every military base all over the world.
They are not. I promise you.
The dependapotamus is an endangered species, if not extinct.
And you know that, as a NextGen MilSpouse, the last thing you are is dependent, so you couldn’t be farther from a “dependapotamus.”