If you're a creative (believe me I hate myself saying that just as much as you do, but I can't help that the term works), odds are you've had some experience with freelance work. From clients who don't want to pay you your incredibly reasonable rate to the friends and family who don't want to pay you at all, it's a minefield of disappointment and late nights and most of us in creative industries can't stand it.
Here's a scenario that may better help you understand why so many of us loathe the term freelance and everything that comes with it:
You're working with a client on a pretty lengthy project. You've put in at minimum 10 hours and aren't really interested in doing any work outside of what you've been paid for, but you see lots of opportunities to improve what they have. You suggest these opportunities to them and they respond something like "Great, get it to me Monday." What the actual fuck?
Or how about this one:
You present the client with a few finished concepts after weeks of working together and hashing out the details. They look them over, decide they hate them all and want you to start from scratch. The client may say something like "Yeah, this just isn't what I pictured. Send me some more and once we have a finalized version, we'll work out payment." Again I ask, what the fuck?
Just because you know we are in dire need of your money to pay our rent and feed the cat we got in spite of our mothers telling us not to, it doesn't mean you can exploit our creativity for your own personal gain. Or furthermore, exploit our creativity because you're an indecisive asshat.
So yeah, paid clients can be a headache in more ways than one, but don't get me started on those who expect you to create for free. Perhaps people hear you say "Yeah, I do some freelance work" and for some reason stopped listening after the "free" part.
"Any work is good work" they'll tell you. Well, they're actually full of crap. Paid work is good work. Don't let them fool you.
I know, your Aunt Joanie has been trying to get her party planning business off of the ground for the past 7 years and you really want to design that logo and website for her, but Jesus Laura, stop giving away your time at no cost!
I think the biggest issue with freelance is that the creative individual isn't setting the bar for how much a client should be valuing their time. I know when you're first starting out, it feels a lot like the end result is all you are worth. But in reality, the process (a.k.a. time) which includes all of that labor and love, is arguably more valuable than anything else you have to offer.
The real message here beyond, FREELANCE SUCKS, is that maybe it doesn't suck. Maybe we just need to learn to set a higher expectation of how much we value our work and more so, ourselves.