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Celina: Stop Trolling Moms For Pregnancy Changes That Don’t ‘Fit’ Society’s Ideas Of ‘Normal’!

As International Breastfeeding Week began, actor and model Celina Jaitley shared a throwback pic from 9 years ago, of her breastfeeding one of her twins then, for which she had been badly trolled. 

As International Breastfeeding Week began, actor and model Celina Jaitley shared a throwback pic from 9 years ago, of her breastfeeding one of her twins then, for which she had been badly trolled. 

Celina Jaitley recently shared a pic from 9 years ago, in which she is breastfeeding one of her twins while the other is lying on the mat next to her. She was trolled for this for many reasons –

  • a “perfect body” which did not “look like a new mother’s body”, that her postpartum body “impossible”.
  • for being a “neglectful mother” who let her newborn lie on the mat because she was worried about posing.

And so many other things that she speaks of in her post.

How easy it is to criticize the way a mother’s body looks after birth, but how difficult can it be to celebrate the work to bring another human into this world? Women receive many unkind remarks following maternity, including those about breastfeeding, weight gain, untied hair, loose clothing, and c-section marks. Our society does not hesitate to judge mothers at any moment. Right?

Perhaps it takes courage to raise children, John Steinbeck stated in his book East Of Eden. I couldn’t agree more, because it actually takes getting used to sleepless nights, stressful days, headaches, bad health, awful urine smell, and a lot of adjustments to raise a kid. I am sure every mother can relate to that.

The light that babies bring to our world is unlike anything else; however, they also bring discomfort to mothers. Mothers never complain because this is what most mothers do as a matter of course for their children.

Celina Jaitley’s IG post for breastfeeding week

Here, the concern is: does society reduce mothers’ stress? No. Because society is busy trolling mothers for the normal changes after pregnancy and childbirth when these don’t ‘fit’ with their ideas of a woman’s body and behaviour. We also, predictably, shame public breastfeeding.

Celina Jaitley raises many such concerns for on this year’s Breastfeeding Week via an Instagram post revealing the trolling she faced 9 years back.

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For those who do not know, the 1st week of August’s is celebrated as an annual global campaign to highlight the importance breastfeeding, and for empowering women to normalize breastfeeding.

Celina gave her explanations for the 9 years old trolling in her post, saying that the doctors suspected dysplasia of the hip in the twin who was lying on the mat, and that’s why she let him kick freely, as that helps. She also addressed the comments about her ‘impossible body’ (for a new mom). She explained how she was diagnosed with gestational diabetes during her pregnancy which can even lead to miscarriages, and therefore, she had to take an extremely healthy diet that resulted in her ‘impossible body’.

Who is anyone else (except for her doctor) to tell a new mom what she should or should not do?

It’s problematic to the community if a mother gains weight but it is also problematic to the same community if that mother maintains weight and follows a healthy diet. Not just celebrities, ordinary mothers then face shaming for their post partum bodies by these trolls who then compare them with celebrities. It’s the general unrealistic mindset of society that it’s their responsibility to comment on how “acceptable” female’s bodies should look like.

In Celina’s words, “I wish people would understand that there’s no one way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one”. With this post, she has left an empowering message for all new mothers, for mothers who breastfeed.

Let moms be, let them breastfeed in peace

Trolls have not just targeted Celina, there have been many celebrity moms who have been harassed during pregnancy or post-pregnancy. The list includes Kareena Kapoor, Neha Dhupia, Shilpa Shetty, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Kalki Koechlin, Dia Mirza, Natasa Stankovic, and many more.

As abusers stare at women’s breasts while they need to breastfeed in public, women feel unsafe feeding their babies. Women are also shamed for feeding in public, and told to go into a restroom or some other private space to feed. How would you feel if you were made to eat your meal in a restroom? It is about the child’s right to eat in public.

Mothers, together, let’s condemn this maternity shame game! Misogynists need to know that mothers are exhausted, and are suffering from sagging stomachs, un-tied hairs, and sleep deprivation, and no one has any business telling these moms what to do and how to look..

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About the Author

Bhumika Agarwal

Bhumika is an English Majors undergraduate at the University Of Delhi and at this moment actively working with an NGO, as a content department associate that works for normalizing menstruation and promotes menstrual hygiene. She read more...

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