Is a pretty controversial thing to say and one that can attract so much backlash, but it’s something that so many women have confided in me. And now as I browse the news this morning, I see Kim Kardashian come out and admit that she feels this way too. Whilst I wouldn’t consider myself a massive fan I do enjoy the family show and I think what she has said surrounding this matter is extremely brave. Considering the backlash she already receives, she is in a position of media power and by being open and honest about this kind of thing will only normalise it for other women.
I actually wrote this post a few weeks ago and while I always intended to post it, I guess I wasn’t feeling ready for any potential negative outcomes.
Several years ago now, a very good friend (who had teenagers) said she hated being pregnant in a group setting. I was taken aback, but not in an offended way, in a “wow, you are so incredibly brave way”. The group didn’t really react so she continued in her explanation. Having lifelong issues with food it was hard for her to put on weight and see her body change, she felt sick for most of her two pregnancies and, as a young mum, struggled to cope with the newborn stage. Now, let me tell you that she was an amazing parent. All she talked about were her kids, she gave up work and study for many years because she believed it was important to stay at home. She continued to research development and social issues that were relevant to both and discussed trying to teach both kids healthy eating and body image.
Still, no one really reacted except for me and she was pretty much ignored. What she said was clearly taboo.
But it’s a true and genuine feeling many women have. I’m not ashamed to say that I have uttered the phrase especially in the first trimester simply because I felt so bad. I was already round, my clothes were not fitting, my breasts had their own gravitational pull and I felt sick and exhausted from dawn until dusk.
However, it’s not just the physical stuff that made me say it and continue to feel this way. I’m anxious most of the time purely out of fear so for the most part, I just want to get to the end result. I also have issues with how much my body is changing at such a rapid pace and the unknown of how big I might actually get with twins. My shape never returned to normal after having Little Man and the lifelong consequences such as incontinence and looking like you are six months pregnant all the time is something I can’t help but think about.
I think people are quick to assume that “OMG! YOU are SO ungrateful” if you even slightly mention you’re not 100% enjoying your pregnancy. But that isn’t the case at all. I am exceedingly grateful for a chance to have a baby and to be able to say I experienced carrying a child full term. However, I don’t have to scream from the rooftops how much I love being pregnant just because I’ve had issues with fertility or because I’m acutely aware that many cannot have this experience at all. I think that’s an unfair guilt trip that I, and many women, put on themselves to the point it has become taboo. I guess I’m trying to say that it’s ok to separate the two – being honest about what is happening for you in pregnancy and being aware some people may get upset by that due to their own circumstances.
I’m not meaning to be insensitive, this post is not meant to intentionally hurt anyone. I believe that I should be able to give an honest opinion without the assumption I don’t deserve the experience. I believe that, along with those women who love every aspect of their pregnancy, those that don’t deserve an equal contribution to the conversation. I believe it is okay to say that pregnancy doesn’t agree with you without fear of coming off like an ungrateful, entitled woman.
I’m finding this pregnancy really physically, mentally and emotionally difficult, and it doesn’t make me a bad person for saying so.
Until next time,