This stunning mom was trolled and bullied for the size of her stomach during her pregnancy.
Elisha Bakes from Melbourne, Australia, and her partner Tane welcomed their second son, Kaelen, in January.
“I found out I was pregnant when I was six weeks along, I’d just stopped breastfeeding my son and we fell pregnant straight away,” Elisha said in a recent interview.
“I had such a good pregnancy though in terms of health.
“I didn’t experience any sickness, but I was always hungry. The last couple of months were the hardest because I experienced a lot of pelvic pains and the last month or so it was very hard to walk and be out and about.
“From when I was 14 weeks pregnant the comments started. As this was my second pregnancy, I popped a lot sooner than the first time.”
However, she felt constant scrutiny for the shape and size of her stomach.
Elisha, whose other son, Tyson, is 21 months old, started getting negative comments when she was just 14 weeks pregnant.
She shared a photo with her Instagram followers to announce her pregnancy but people told her she must have got her dates wrong because she looked much further along.
Whenever she received comments, the personal trainer would explain that she’s only 1,5m tall, while her partner is 1,8m tall.
She said her small stature would probably make her bump look bigger.
But people continued to criticise her size, even telling her she was eating too much.
As her pregnancy progressed, she wanted to relish it and embrace her changing body.
But the comments worsened as time went on.
“When my third trimester started, I started to receive more and more comments about my growing baby bump.
“They would always be very repetitive, including that I was having 78 kids, people saying I was giving birth to a horse or it must have been triplets.
“People would also say hurtful things like ‘why is her bump so big? I better not get like this’ and that it was the biggest bump they’d ever seen.
“People would even comment on my Instagram pictures saying the size of my bump was gross and say, ‘I hope I never get that big’,” she says, adding that she decided to ignore the negative commentary.
She received loads of messages from women who’d experienced the same thing.
“When people tell you that you look gross or suggest you’re not leading a healthy lifestyle during your pregnancy, it can be hurtful,” Elisha said.
“I think people have an idea in their head about how a pregnant woman should look, sometimes based off their own experiences,” she explained. “So when they see a woman who’s carrying larger or smaller, they feel the need to comment and give their two cents.
“I had hundreds of messages from women who’d experienced the same thing. They told me how they’d get very anxious about people commenting on their bump and it would make them feel very insecure and not be able to enjoy their pregnancy.
“This would range from women who carried small and they would have people ask if they were even pregnant or telling them that they’d looked bigger after eating a pizza. Some women were told they needed to eat more, whereas I was told to lay off the food.
“I ignored them 98 percent of the time. I have thick skin so I just continued to embrace my pregnancy and baby bump while I could.”
Elisha hopes her positive posts on Instagram will inspire pregnant women to embrace their bodies.
“I love sharing my journey online because I express my feelings in my posts,” she said.
“I like sending reminders that everyone carries differently and there are many factors that determine how you carry, such as weight, height, your partner’s genetics, fluid, pregnancy conditions.
“I get so many messages from women who would tell me how I have given them more confidence and made them feel better about their bumps.
“Comments regarding a woman’s size can really impact how they feel about themselves.
“Hormones are already running wild and adjusting to your changing body isn’t easy, so hearing hurtful remarks about your body can only have a negative impact.
“No matter what size you are, pregnancy isn’t easy.”
Source: Magazine Features