Postpartum Body Image

WellMama Resource Guide: Postpartum Body Image

Pregnancy and new motherhood are the times when women go through the most insecurity-inducing body changes. From regular weigh-ins during prenatal check-ups to talk in the coffee shop, everyone seems to be concerned about a pregnant woman’s weight, and that concern doesn’t go away during the postpartum period. Your postpartum body will likely look different to you, but that difference isn’t necessarily negative.

This section of the WellMama Resource Guide will focus on how to cultivate a healthy postpartum body image. If you would like to contribute to the WellMama Resource Guide, please email resource guide volunteer Mandy Lindgren.

pregnant woman Postpartum Body Image

A lot of chatter about image, appearance, and weight bombards women every day. Billboards assault us with images of impossibly thin models. Ads on Facebook insist they can help us lose the muffin top. A plethora of magazines shout their headlines at us as we stand in line at the grocery store: Lose ten pounds! The flat belly diet! Slim down by summer!

pregnant woman sleeping with babyBlog Post: Love Your Tree

This is my favorite picture of my son and me on the day he was born. My boyfriend took it a few hours after our successful home birth. But I have never shared the photo publicly until now. I was embarrassed by the fact that I gave birth, but still looked pregnant. The truth is other people should be embarrassed that they don’t know what a postpartum body looks like.

External Resources

Shape of a Mother is a website dedicated to helping women see what bodies actually look like without airbrushing or plastic surgery.

Does This Pregnancy Make Me Look Fat?: The Essential Guide to Loving your Body Before and After Baby is a book written by Claire Mysko and Magali Amadei (available at WellMama library) that explores how to develop a healthy body image during and after pregnancy.

America the Beautiful is a documentary directed by Darryl Roberts (available through Netflix Watch Instantly) that explores our country’s emphasis on beauty and the damaging effects that emphasis has on women, men, and families.