Your body image post partum...
Are celebrities damaging mother’s post partem confidence on body image?
Recently, Rebecca Vardy had a photo shoot with her then 3-month-old baby. She chose to have photos published unedited and not photo-shopped. Thousands of mothers rejoiced that finally, someone in the spot light was honest and brave enough to put the photos in the main stream media of what a real post partem body looks like.
However, other than receiving the kudos she deserved she was attacked with viscous and demeaning comments, trolled and abused on social media. Why? Because she dared share a glimpse of the realities of becoming a mother? Because the truth is, as much as you think your body will go back to your pre-pregnancy self, you grew, carried and birthed a human. You will then hand over your body once again to potentially feed them for the next 6+ months and give your soul to the never-ending sleep deprivation. You are not going to look the same as you did, you will have changed. You will have become a mother.
I don’t know about you but when I am pregnant, I become slightly obsessed with celebrities who are pregnant too (Beyoncé, Cheryl Tweedy and Rosie Huntington Whitely what was the universe trying to do to me?!) Then comes the reveal where they have gone in, and are pictured leaving the hospital looking immaculate, like they have just stepped of the catwalk. The headlines in the media are all the same; ‘….. snaps back into shape 2 days after giving birth’. ‘Back in her skinny jeans’. ‘Lost all of the baby weight in next to no time’. These are the articles we are ashamed to say we consume daily with some vigour. They are the ones we know we shouldn’t take notice of but we do and then you begin to question why don’t you look like that. That it is in fact us that are not normal for looking like that.
Nearing the end of my second pregnancy, I have tried to embrace my ever-expanding waistband. There is also something nice about the attention a nice round bump brings. But as I near the end of the third trimester my thoughts are beginning to focus on my post partem body. I am in no rush to lose weight after the baby is born, I just want to take some time to slowly recover and adjust to being a mother of two but I still feel pressure to do this. I believe it really is detrimental to a mother’s wellbeing in the early days to be bombarded with this insane pressure to just, ‘snap back’, and then there is the media full of post partem celebs in bikinis which do not exactly help. Let’s get real, shall we? We do not have the wardrobe, the help, the make-up artists, hair stylists and fitness trainers (oh and THE MONEY) that those celebs do. If we did, we may all look like Kate Middleton emerging from the hospital with a freshly styled hair do. Instead we stumble out of the hospital dishevelled in our partner’s joggers, boobs leaking and smelling faintly of sick. Strangely, I am fine with this as it is real life, and it is people like Rebecca Vardy and Giovanna Fletcher who are putting an honest face on celebrity parenting. Magazines, online tabloids and social media all portray a prefect image of motherhood that frankly is only accessible to the minority.
Then when faced with a true representation of the post partem body the world panics and goes into meltdown. A new mum is at her most vulnerable in the year or so after giving birth what we need to do is support her, empower her and nourish her as I for one know the first-hand effects that maternal mental health can have. We need celebrities to stand up to the media and the ridiculously imposed pressure they have created on new mums and what is expected of them after having a baby. Do not pose for photos that will be edited or photo- shopped giving us unreal expectations, that when we do not meet them make us feel like failures. Boycott the headlines that give us false hope. Be honest. Be real. Let’s all just get rid of the post partem pressure as it is destroying new mum’s confidence and their perception of body image, and just enjoy motherhood! Facebook; www.facebook.com/honestconfessionsofanicumum/ Twitter; www.twitter.com/MumNicu Instagram; www.instagram.com/vicki_nicu-mum Blog; http://confessionsofanicumum.blogspot.co.uk/