10 Tips on How to Handle Post Partum Body Distress

Today I came across an awesome blog post by The Mommyologist called The Reality of Post-Partum Mom Sexy who tells it like it is! Like so many, I aspired to be a MILF within seconds of giving birth, when, in reality I was anything but! Images of celebs who are back to their pre-pregnancy shape within weeks were all I clung to in the first few days but they are the exception, the very, VERY annoying, irritating exception.

I cried when BiP was a month old because I was still huge and in my maternity clothes. I was told in my breastfeeding class that if I breastfed I would lose the weight  faster – that was not the case. My friends told me that by the time BiP was 3 months I would start losing weight. 3 months came and went, I cried again. I joined a gym. I tried a diet, it hit my milk, I felt stupid, I had to eat. I resigned myself to being a “Yummy Mummy”. I had to accept that I was not going to be one of the lucky ones who had their baby weight melt off. Well, maybe melt is the right word. BiP’s weight has always equaled my weight loss … lucky me – she’ll be 3 by the time I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight!

Here are some tips for handling post-partum body distress …

1.  You will still be fat after giving birth
– your belly MIGHT be softer but it will certainly be there

2.  Those who tell you that breastfeeding will help you regain your body faster are liars. Yes, for some it does but for many it doesn’t. Yes, it burns an extra 500 calories a day but you will be HUNGRY if you are feeding a little milk monkey. The insatiable hunger I had in the early days, and sometimes still do, will probably exceed the extra 500 calories recommended.

3.  Some (stupid) people may ask if you are pregnant again months after you have given birth – try not to cry, insult (or hit) them – they just lack social skills.

4.  DON’T be so hard on yourself – bringing a new life into this world is a huge responsibility and as long as you are healthy that is the focus for now.

5.  Find support from Yummy Mummy’s – Avoid MILF’s at all costs. They will just make you depressed and jealous – which you don’t have time for right now.

6.  Try not to hang on to other people’s experiences – they belong to other people – not you (and remember celebs have Photoshop).

7.  When having photo’s taken of you and your baby focus in on the breasts up – you’ll probably have a cleavage to die for and the empty, protruding belly will be out of the frame.

8.  Wear your baby – when you are wearing your baby no one can see your body.

9.  Accept the fact that when you are with your baby no one is looking at you.

10.  Go shopping for scarves, bags and make-up – it doesn’t matter what size you are.

I hold on to the fact that I won’t be like this forever … so I am promised by many mothers who have been in the same position!

27 Responses to 10 Tips on How to Handle Post Partum Body Distress

  1. I wish someone would have told me about the loose jello belly skin I would have post partum!

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh Chris … YES! I kinda omitted that point from this post because I am still in denial … my belly looks a bit like brain – really, REALLY ugly. I am still unsure how the skin will go back, people say it does but I am not entirely sure HOW!?!

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh Chris … YES! I kinda omitted that point from this post because I am still in denial … my belly looks a bit like brain – really, REALLY ugly. I am still unsure how the skin will go back, people say it does but I am not entirely sure HOW!?!

  2. Great post. I agree, I exclusively BF for 6 months and, yes, i did loose the weight quick but my body never changed.

    • Anonymous says:

      Seriously Karrie? Wow! No one tells you that! Great job on the EBFing for 6 months … that’s awesome!

  3. Yup, I thought I’d be back in my pre-pregnancy clothes two weeks after my son’s birth… Hahaha! Didn’t happen. Thanks for posting this! It’s nice to remember other moms go through this, too.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am not sure where we get these ideas from! It took a good 9 months to gain the weight so why would it just fall off after birth? And if it did we wouldn’t be in terribly good health as a result would we?
      Thanks for sharing … great to have other mama’s around in the same boat!

  4. Good tips! I’m in the same boat. DS is over 10 months and I still can’t lose weight. I like #8 – wear your baby. It really does hide my hideous belly.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks for sharing Emily, it makes the world of difference to know that we are not alone doesn’t it?

  5. Enjoy the boobs now because when you stop the bfing they shrink to sizes never before seen! 🙂 Glad you are going to stop being so hard on yourself. You’re still the hotness even if you don’t think you are.

    • mummyinprovence says:

      Oh don’t tell me that!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh don’t tell me that!! Thanks for your lovely words!

  6. Thanks for this post! It is a good forewarning of whats to come, and here was me thinking it’ll be all unicorns and fairy dust… It will be a good excuse to go shopping after giving birth anyway, but maybe exclusively online if I’m going to get depressed by my size in shop changing rooms. And here I was thinking that I would no longer be a lump of lard come this summer 🙁 But it’s better to know than to be in the dark!

    I like the idea of wearing your baby to draw attention away from your body. I’m currently looking for a ring sling but not having much luck finding one in France, any suggestions ?

    As for number 3, well when I put on some weight a few years ago it all went to my tummy and people were asking me for about a year when I was due and then how my baby was! I was mortified so I guess I’ll be wearing her a lot to avoid this question 🙂

    • mummyinprovence says:

      Thanks Piglet! I hope it will be unicorns and fairy dust for you but maybe just not around your middle! Expect to be big this summer – if you are one of the lucky ones you will be pleasantly surprised! Unrealistic expectations, like I had, just make you want to cry all.the.time.

      As far as baby wearing is concerned, I loved my wrap, could never get the hang of the ring slings, baby bjorn etc … ended up selling them all on eBay and buying a wrap. Baby wearing burns calories too but even with a 9.5kg baby strapped to me I have become strong as an ox and am not any smaller! (new post topic I feel!)

      Enjoy the rest of your pregnancy!

    • Anonymous says:

      I do hope that it will be fairy dust and unicorns when your little one arrives – I just can’t promise it will be around your middle!

      As far as baby wearing solutions are concerned, I love my wrap – I had ring slings and carriers but non of them were as kind on my back as the wrap. They are a bit daunting at first but after a couple of uses they are so easy!

      Enjoy the rest of your pregnancy!

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks, makes me feel so much better that I am not the only one!

  7. Sandoutlaws says:

    I love the Honesty!

  8. You focus on the belly, but for me that is less of a problem – I mean, people KNOW I just had a baby in there. But the rest of me, especially arms and sides, that are stubbornly fat kill me. If I would have known how hard this would be, I wouldn’t have let myself gain nearly as much during my pregnancy. I assumed breastfeeding and toting around a baby would be enough.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are so right. I focus on the belly because the rest just makes me want to cry! Yes, the arms, oh the mummy arms and the back … dear oh dear … glad I am not alone!

      Were you also told that breastfeeding and being active with your baby would melt off the weight? Liars! I am fit, strong and oh so very chunky still!

      • EVERYONE said breastfeeding would just melt off the weight. Yes, I feel so strong – I would be so toned if I slimmed down!

        Nutrisystem turned me down because I’m still nursing (I plan to for at least another 7 months), I tried going vegan for a week, counted calories for a straight month… How is it that my body needs an entire 30 extra pounds just to breastfeed!

  9. Tahera Khorakiwala says:

    Great post! My little monster is nearly two years old now and I’m back to my pre-pregnancy weight. I can’t say that it’s exactly a “Yippeee!” moment though. Although I fit back into all of my old wardrobe; it doesn’t look the same. Stuff I used to look great in before is a bit… Don’t know the word. Just not the same. I think this is how I’m going to look forever (or until I get pregnant again). So I’m learning to love the new me.

  10. depressedmommy says:

    hi! im so happy i found this site. im not alone. im only 6 months pp, but i feel so down i even had to see a psychiatrist and take anti depressants. i was depressed due to a lot of things and the sudden changes that happened when my son came. one other huge thing for me is how huge i became. im short, very skinny, was less than 100lbs when i found out i was pregnant. everyone said if i kept a healthy diet all through out the 9mos i was preggy, i will lose weight in no time. yes, they also said the same stuff abt breastfeeding. i breastfed for 2mos. i am very physically active. i even work at night, which gives me less sleep. im now 120 lbs, even heavier when i gave birth. it may sound still small, but all of the added weight is just in my tummy. where i come from, fat people are ridiculed. i cried everyday. that’s when my husband took me to a doctor. maybe in a few more months, ill get thinner. if i dont, i hope i atleast accept myself no matter how huge i am. after all, giving birth is not easy, and i bet those who made fun and still treats me like a huge (literally) joke will never get pass what i went through.

    • mummyinprovence says:

      So sorry you feel this way – My daughter is 2.5 years old now and I can say my body is still no where near where it was pre-pregnancy and my belly is still big – it’s like someone stuck some jelly on it – If I could turn back the clock I wish I’d been so much kinder on myself – we are so much more than the way we look. Try and be kinder to yourself – it took 9 months to go one, it will take that and some more to come off.

  11. I feel similar feelings about my body.
    But I don’t think I will ever accept it. Not for a lack of loving myself though, but because I love myself. I guess I just don’t accept my body as me, as in I am not my body, it doesn’t define me, but I feel like it should live up to my standard. Like my body should match my self esteem rather than let my self esteem slip to match my body. I see selfesteem as recognising you deserve perfection.
    For other people it’s about accepting their flaws. Both are fine if it makes you happy, it’s one of those great life lessons realising everybody is different. If you aren’t happy I feel for you, if you are happy then I’m happy that you are happy. Even if we want different things to make ourselves happy.
    So personally I’m going to the gym, dieting and saving for surgery, but I wish you all the very best as one mum to another. x

  12. DeepestBlue says:

    Hi, I’m 6 weeks pp and feeling really down about how I look. My stomach is the worst – total OTT, muffin top! this is my 1st baby so learning all the ropes and trying to lose the weight. I was over weight before and dieting, but put an extra 2st on during pregnancy – since giving birth, I’ve lost 1st but still carrying too much and it’s evident. I look & feel worn, It will get easier I know, it’s just not nice for us to all feel this way! So I understand ladies.

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