Loving your mummy body, stretch marks, wobbly bits and all…

I had my first baby when I was just 17 years old. Not on purpose you understand, but that is another story… Now I was under the illusion that young bodies were stretchy and supple. I imagined my baby would form a neat bump and that I would spring pertly back into place two weeks after birth.

Oh how wrong I was.

At about eight months pregnant my stomach erupted into a mass of hideous purple stretch marks – it turns out my young skin just couldn’t take the strain. I know I’m not alone – a friend of mine recently wrote about the frightening array of pregnancy body nasties, and it turns out that all kinds of things can happen to you – cankles anyone?

Two babies and over two years of breastfeeding later and my 31 year old mummy body could certainly do with a bit of work. Not of the surgical kind of course, just the ‘me getting myself off the sofa once in a while’ variety. I kid myself that typing counts as exercise, but I know I am clutching at straws.

I was pleased therefore to read in The Mail today about It’s Complicated, a new rom-com starring Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin. The Mail claims the film is testimony to the fact that ‘wobbly bits can be sexy too!’ I really hope that is the case, as I certainly have my fair share.

As a single mum, I feel more conscious than ever about the parts of me that are not so perfect. When you are in a relationship with the father of your children you can take comfort from the fact that at least they can remember what you looked liked before your tummy bulged over the top of your jeans. When you’re single, you have to deal with the daunting prospect of at some point having to reveal your naked body – stretch marks and all – to a new man. A scary thought indeed.

But then as It’s Complicated shows, perhaps we should be a little more accepting of ourselves and realise it’s not just women who feel the effects of ageing. At least I don’t have to worry about balding. Well not yet at least.

Flickr image by bies

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14 Comments

  1. 14 January, 2010 / 4:58 pm

    Well said. I get so fed up of seeing these celebs springing back into shape six weeks after giving birth. I’m sure they must have their stretchmarks sandblasted or something. I would like to get rid of my jelly belly tho.

    • 14 January, 2010 / 10:22 pm

      I’m sure I do HAVE tummy muscles, you can feel them under the layer of wobbly skin :-)

  2. 14 January, 2010 / 9:20 pm

    I ended up with a damaged body after three large babies delivered by C-section and had to have the damage to my stomach etc fixed surgically. Though the surgery was wonderful I still have some remaining stretch marks that no surgery can take away. Isn’t it time that the celebs and others are a little more realistic and truthful about how real bodies can react after having babies. Well done for bravely saying what so many don’t. Oh, and by the way I used to wonder if another man would ever find my scarred body sexy, and I’m pleased to say I did. You will too, I’m sure.

    • 14 January, 2010 / 10:23 pm

      Wow! Three babies by C-section AND more surgery – was that very traumatic? Glad you found someone to love your body just the way it is.

  3. 15 January, 2010 / 12:29 am

    I can totally agree with all that you said there, I was exactly the same and still am now. Even though I am still with Baba’s daddy I still feel like that now, in a way I feel worse that he can remember me pre pregnancy as then he has something to compare me with!

  4. 15 January, 2010 / 1:18 pm

    My body has always looked like a mass of stretch marks bulging over my jeans. Fortunately, my husband met me when I looked like that!

    I’m sure you look absolutely beautiful xx

  5. 15 January, 2010 / 3:55 pm

    Yeah it is one of life’s great mysteries why men don’t generally feel that embarassed about being flabby/out of shape/looking like crap and women do. For example have you ever done on line dating – men send you some awful pics and act like they are Adonis. Hilarious (but tragic too)

    Apparently in It’s Complicated you get a shot of Alex Baldwins flabby gut – I don’t think any Hollywood actress would get away with that.

    As for your own body – don’t get too worried about it when you meet a new guy the chemistry will be so hot he won’t notice!

  6. 15 January, 2010 / 4:19 pm

    Thanks a most amusing read. And obviously you must know there is nothing wrong with you if they ‘reject’ you….if online dating teaches us anything it is that there are huge amounts of wackjobs out there.

  7. 17 January, 2010 / 8:53 pm

    I did the online dating thing too and it was a highly amusing couple of years. The guys I knew online would often rail against women not putting their weight on their profiles. My reply was when they put their own man-size down then I’d put my weight down. Funny no one did.

    • 18 January, 2010 / 10:08 am

      Funny that – not sure you’d get an accurate answer – I’m always surprised by the number of people who rate themselves as ‘very attractive’!

  8. 26 January, 2010 / 6:41 pm

    Interesting topic!
    How refreshing to read an article that points out that we all (not just woman) age with time. Nature, you know… BUT it is the people who really care to do something about it that get up from the couch and go to the gym (or start a diet, etc.).
    Others (most of us…) just keep complaining about what we dislike about our body. Maybe we should embrace it instead, after all, we’ll be stuck with it unless we change it..
    Good luck!

    • 27 January, 2010 / 5:24 pm

      Thanks! Just got back actually from going to watch It’s Complicated and it was fab – lovely to see a hollywood romance blockbuster with older men and women for a change! Plus it was very funny – definitely worth a watch.

  9. sian
    8 December, 2012 / 10:30 am

    I just wanted to say that although I agree with everything people have said about post pregnancy wobbly bits, I have to admit I’m quite fond of my stretch marks. I know, it’s weird, but they are kind of a memento of carrying my babies. I am strangely proud of them.

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