Tuesday, December 20, 2011

baby body bitchiness

It feels like I'm being bombarded of late by blogs, articles and essays written by 'real women' on their post-baby bodies. The main theme of these articles seems to be Miranda Kerr, Scary Spice, Mariah Carey and the like are doing a dis-service to the collective womanhood by looking great after having babies.

Apparently real woman gain weight during pregnancy and they don't have the time or the inclination to lose it after the birth of their babies. They're too busy looking after said babies and even if they wanted to lose the weight right away, they couldn't because it's just not that easy.

The thing that these articles all have in common is that the authors are guilty of doing the very thing they're bitching about. "I'm being criticised because of the way my body looks after having a baby" and then in the same breath they criticise women who look great or take steps to get back into shape after having a baby.

Shame on you ladies. You can't have it both ways. Either you accept that 'real woman' not only have stretched out belly's, dimpled thighs and saggy boobs but can also have flat stomachs, smooth skin and perky breasts and stop putting them down. Or you don't, in which case, cop the criticism you're so happy to dish out at others with good graces. It's hypocritical at best and just plain bitchy at worst.

I'm just a little bit over it all. The only people who give a shit about post baby bodies are women who've had babies and most of the time, its those women who are unhappy with themselves who are the most critical. Celebrities aren't to blame for women feeling shit about themselves. Women do it all on their own, after all who is it thats buying women's magazines in the first place?

I could assume that you gained weight during your pregnancy because you sat on your arse eating pizza and potato chips for nine months but I'd probably be wrong, so why is it ok for you to assume that a woman who doesn't gain weight doesn't eat properly? Or that she's doing crunches 10 minutes after giving birth?

So, you don't look like you used to and your body doesn't look like Miranda Kerr's. Get over it. It doesn't give you licence to trash her and other women who don't fit neatly into the little box you've crafted as normal to make yourself feel good. The only dis-service being done to the collective womanhood, is the ongoing need women have to put other women down who are not like them.

Just stop it. 'Real Women' come in all shapes and sizes, not just yours. It's not a war with the skinnies versus the fatties. Slagging off people who appear to have "bounced back easily" right after birth says more about you than it does them. It's only an issue because YOU make it an issue.

Acceptance goes both ways.

post signature


  1. A few of my friends have had babies in recent years. Each has responded differently to the experience, but there's really no noticeably dramatic difference between the women as far as socio-economic status. Odd as it may be, the one whose body has bounced back the most dramatically has actually had two children in the last few years.

    She could live off Taco Bell, I think, so it's not like she's abject to unhealthy food. But she does make a point to be active and in any event, she's insanely hyper so I'm certain her metabolism has been a tremendous advantage.

    My point is that my friends are all "real" women and they, too, have had varying experiences for various reasons. I would be just as upset to hear one of them put down for not "recovering" according to someone else's expectations as I would to hear one of them scorned for being fit after birth. Each has her own physiology and habits, and woe unto anyone who might cast an unkind word toward them within my earshot.

  2. Amen!

    I've been thin most of my life. And you'd be surprised how many people think it's ok to jokingly criticize me because I'm thin. As if I don't eat enough or as if I was born with a magic gene that makes calories vanish.

    Now that I'm pregnant, I'm all belly and not much other weight gained in other areas. You'd think I was a freak of nature or an outright insult to some women. They act like I owe it to them to finally "get fat like the rest of us".

    My whole life it's been this way and I'm pretty fed up.

    I don't have magic genetics. I eat healthy foods in healthy amounts. I don't eat when I'm bored or sad. I don't eat more calories than my body needs on the average day. Even my snacks are not overkill. A jello pudding for 60 calories. Or 3 chocolate cookies. That's it. I cook healthy food. I rarely eat at restaurants or takeout.

    I maintain a healthy weight even without working out. How? I eat healthy and only enough to fuel my body.

    Oooo mystery solved. *grumble*

  3. @Brightside Congratulations on your pregnancy! I was the same during my pregnancy and got all sorts of horrendous comments on my weight and my eating habits and then after giving birth I got even more comments about my weight (or perceived lack of).

    Like you, I eat healthy. I also exercise daily. I generally don't consume more calories than my body needs. Yesterday I was told that "You need to fatten up, you look gaunt" but if I'd said what I wanted to say "No, I'm healthy, you need to lose weight because you're fat." I'd be the bad guy. It really burns me. I wish people would stop thinking that it's ok to comment on a persons weight just because they're thin.