no better than (one) should be(redirected from no better than they should be)
no better than (one) should be
Immoral or perverse, especially having a tendency toward sexual promiscuity. Typically said of a woman. The town is still quite conservative and closed-minded, and they think a woman whose boyfriend spends the night is no better than she should be.
no better than you should (or ought to) beregarded as sexually promiscuous or of doubtful moral character.
This phrase dates back to the early 17th century. Used typically of a woman, it is now rather dated.
1998 Spectator ‘She's no better than she ought to be.’ (British mothers of my generation… often used that enigmatic phrase. They would use it about female neighbours of whom they disapproved, or women in low-cut dresses on television.)