From bird to babe, the 20 sexist ‘pet names’ women want to ban

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Bird, doll and babe have been voted the most hated ‘pet names’ that women want to see banned.

The ‘nicknames’ came top in a list of the 20 sexist ‘pet names’ women want to ditch.

More than 2,000 women were surveyed by Special K as part of its new ‘Strength is..’ campaign and most said they found a number of pet names derogatory.
Bitchy, hormonal, high maintenance and ball breaker were amongst those that women called inappropriate.

The poll also found that around 40 per cent of women said they felt ‘patronised’ when someone referred to them by a pet name in the workplace.

While a third of 16 to 24-year-olds said they had been told to ‘man up’ at work.

Around 13% of the women said they felt ‘belittled’ by a woman calling them ‘babe’ or ‘doll’ while almost 30% said they had been called a ‘flirt’ when growing up.
Instead, almost three quarters said they’d prefer to see more women described as ‘confident’, ‘resilient’ and ‘courageous’.

Former Girls Aloud singer Nicola Roberts, who is one of the campaign’s ambassadors, said: ‘It is a strange thing that in a modern society we still have room for
language that holds strong women back.

‘It is very important young women in society grow up learning that you are not a “ball breaker” if you are successful – you are simply a strong woman succeeding.

‘Women are too often called ‘bossy’, ‘feisty’ or ‘attention seeking’, now is the time to change the conversation and rewrite the vocabulary we use to empower women and
not let others define us.’

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