7 October 2017

I Hate My Post-Baby Body, and I Resent That I Do


Many women, like myself, are left with scars, stretch marks, and loose skin after giving birth. It's a reality that women themselves often try to hide and the media never wants to show. After having three children I can say that I have very low self-esteem and regularly wear clothing that hides my lumps and bumps.

I mean, we're all told that we should be proud of our bodies, that we should wear our tiger stripes with pride. But when you're a mum and you've done the whole baby thing, and your children start to get older, you start to resent how much your body has changed.

And we shouldn't resent our bodies. They have done an amazing thing. Growing a child inside your body. All those hormones, the stretching and then the pushing, our bodies are made for exactly this purpose. But I guess, when you are a self-conscious person, no praising your body is going to help with the hatred that you have towards it. 

I am overweight. Not by loads, but I am the heaviest I have ever been (pregnancies included) and it makes me hate myself. I hate my body... and that makes me hate myself even more. 

Why I am focusing on something that doesn't even matter? My parenting skills haven't changed because I'm heavier. My marriage is no different now I have extra baggage to carry around. But it doesn't matter. 

I'm left feeling like a failure and I don't know why. I mean, I purposely let me sons see my body and talk about how it held them for 9 (and a half) month, that they grew in my tummy and that the stretchmarks are there for a reason and are to be loved, but I don't think that way myself. 

Well, I do... Kind of. I'm hypocritical because I can love how my body created and grew three children, but then I hate it...

I try to help my body. I eat moderately better and I go to the gym 3 times a week. And it does help. My mood lifts whilst I'm at the gym and I come home feeling refreshed. But then I need to get changed and as I waft passed the mirror, I am left deflated. Going to the gym is great, but it's no quick fix. The tummy area is the hardest place to tone and lose weight from so it's hard to keep the motivation going when you don't see results.

I have been thinking about my body hate a lot recently. We have booked a holiday abroad for next April and it's going to be warm. I want to have the confidence to wear a bikini without loathing myself. I want to play on the beach and in the pool without thinking about my body and without resentment anymore. 

I just want to be happy in myself. I don't even know why I wrote this post really. It's just something I have been thinking a lot about and sometimes my blog is my brain dump area to get it all off my chest. I guess I wanted to write that life's not always a bed of roses and that just because people look confident, that might not really be how they feel on the inside.

20 comments:

  1. It is odd that not many women talk about their post baby bodies. It is quite an adjustment being a different sort of you. Give it time. This will pass. Honestly.

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  2. Your post resonated with me. I have not had children and the really shallow thing is that part of the reason I haven't is the fear of what changes my body will go through - that it won't be like it was before. I, like you, have low self-esteem. I am the heaviest I have ever been, through ill health and...comfort eating ashamedly. I hate the way I look now and it is too the point that we do not have mirrors in our house, I often will avoid taking photos and we do not go away on holiday because I dread the idea of having to show off my body. I went from a size 8 to 14-16. I see women my age, who I went to school with and they have had 1 or more children and look fantastic! Still wearing slinky dresses on nights out, but some days I feel so hideous that I can't leave the house.

    I felt the need to respond to your post to let you know that you are not alone. That even those of us who do not have children, can have major body hang ups (at least yours has given you the miracle of life!). You are beautiful inside and out but sometimes our minds are dead set on seeing only the negatives. For every one thing you like about yourself, you will find 3 that you hate, but perhaps every day, you brave that mirror and you tell yourself what you do like. You remind yourself that you are beautiful and you have a man and family that love you just the way you are.

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  3. Sometimes just writing about body image helps put things in perspective
    You are focusing on one negative when there are so many POSITIVES
    None of us are BARBIE!!

    Real world
    Real people
    Real women

    That's what we are xx

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  4. I remember feeling the same after having my 3 babies. Your body does change and I think it takes time for you to get your head around that. I definitely felt like my body was not my own anymore after my third baby. But with time, weight shifted, stretch marks faded and i started to get my confidence back. You will too, it just takes time xxx

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  5. It's good to talk about these things and find out that you aren't the only one that feels this way it will pass honestly.

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  6. It was lovely reading your post and after having 3 children (in quick succession) I really feel the way you do. My hips are huge and are disproportionate to the rest of my body now and I hate it. It also affects my marriage because my husband fancied me more when I was slimmer. I feel good when I go running but it's not a quick fix and I've got such a sweet tooth. If you feel better when you go the gym, why don't you go 4 or 5 times a week (if you have the time)?

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  7. I am the same......nice to read this x

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  8. I also have three beautiful children but hate my body, I wear leggings vest tops and jumpers or jackets to cover my lumps and bumps, when I say to people I feel like it they think I'm being silly as I'm size 10-12 but when I have a shower I just see a jelly belly, stretch marks, saggy boobs and thunder thighs, I know my body has done an amazing job making three beautiful amazing children but I do feel very low about it, I joined the gym and started losing weight then found out I was pregnant on my third whilst on the pill, I know I can go back to the gym but its finding the time and money as my partner works all week, and were just managing with money xXx

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  9. After 5 babies each over 9lb I get that feeling . My body will never be the same .

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  10. After 5 babies each over 9lb I get that feeling . My body will never be the same .

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  11. I do so understand hun. xxx I have had four babies, and two emergency C-Sections,and sadly during last surgery my stomach wall basically detached from my muscles, so, I could exercise 24 hours a day, my stomach wall would be tighter than Arnies used to be, however, the apron of fat on the outside of my stomach will not change, its now basically stretched extra skin, and the only way to lose it is to have expensive surgery as I would never qualify on the nhs.
    So...I have had to learn to love the fact I look 9 months pregnant all the time, the skin is so much I have to wear size 24 trousers on the bottom, whilst wearing a size 16 top lol. I did care, I got very embarrassed, down, depressed, carrying this extra weight has made my sciatic nerve pain horrible, but I just have to live n a diet of pain relief, which, then makes me over-eat....and the evil circle of weight continues.
    Something had to give. Where I had been a Size 14 mum to my boys, running about, playing football and enjoying long walks in the woods, to my girls I am much less active. I try to take them for walks as often as possible, trying not to let it get me down that every pound I shift gets barely noticed...I see it in my face and neck and even arms, but not the lower half, but it was my husband who changed it all.
    I was having a low hormonal day, crying about how I couldn't even wear baggy jeans comfortably, when he grabbed me, kissed me, and told me how much it hurt him to hear me slagging myself off. He told me how perfect I was, the weight wasn't 'me', it might be hard, and uncomfortable, but he pointed out our children and said did I want them to grow up remembering me miserable and sad, or smiling and happy. And something clicked. I could control how I felt about myself, because I had four amazing kids telling me how great I was, an amazing man who made me feel sexy even when I know I looked less attractive than a pile of bin bags, and as my confidence grew, so did my smile, and I dyed my hair, I bought now clothes and every day I try to take the kids out for a walk, thinking, I might never look skinny ever again, and I have so many silvery stretchmarks, I glow in the dark! But I have just as much right to enjoy every single day as a skinny bird! And while most ladies might be able to wear skin tight jeans and sexy low cut tops, none of them have my beautiful children, and none of them have my amazing husband! lol. xxxx

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  12. I understand you fully. I have also hated my body and tend to cover up with baggy clothes. My weight has fluctuated for years since having children (35 years now). But I do know that it is in my mind as others continually tell me I look beautiful and fine.

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  13. I don;t know what to say, focus on what makes you feel good, face your fears. I think you are beautiful for what it is worth, inside and out

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  14. try to see what makes you sad and maybe try toembark on a mission to improve things THIS WOULD probably make you feel mentally better too

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  15. It's sad that we are made to feel unattractive after having children. Unrealistic ideals are foisted upon us by the media, who don't own up to how much airbrushing / Photoshopping is done on photos of "celebrities", or how much plastic surgery the "celebs" have had done to remove "excess" skin or fat. Please try to resist comparing yourself to these false images and focus on what makes you happy instead.

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  16. I'm really feeling the same after having my 3rd, I just cannot shift the weight I gained and if anything I keep gaining, I'm not even really eating that badly, certainly not any worse than I did before getting pregnant again. Any treat I might have and the pounds just pile on, I can't get away with anything anymore

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  17. My stretch marks are my tiger stripes and my wobbly bits are part of me. It’s taken me years to accept that I am never going to have the “perfect body” but it’s mine and has served me well

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