Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A Tale of Two Post-Pregnancy Photos

A Tale of Two Post-Pregnancy Photos
MariaKangWhatsYourExcusePhoto credit: Body Image Movement | Facebook 
These two post-pregnancy photos have been all over the media lately. The first photo of Maria Kang with the caption "What's your excuse?," has been in the line of fire with people labeling her a bully.
The second picture, along with others, have been posted by an Australian woman, Taryn Brumfitt, largely in response to Kang's photo. 

Brumfitt wants to paint a more realistic picture of women's post-pregnancy bodies, saying, "I’m on a quest to redefine and rewrite the ideals of beauty. Women have been brainwashed into thinking fat, wrinkles and cellulite are bad. They’re not. It’s just a part of being a human being."

Team Kang or Team Brumfitt?
After reading about the two women on Fox 8 WGHP, which seemed to be very pro-Brumfitt, I was unsure at first whether I was Team Brumfitt or Team Kang. While I haven't had a baby of my own yet, Kang and women like her give me hope that I can look great, even hot!, post-pregnancy. And, between the two, I know which photo I would rather have.

Ultimately though, I am Team Brumfitt, for this reason: in a world full or Photoshopped, Facebook pictures and glamorous profiles, she had the courage to be authentic. 

My Take
I don't know about you, but if I'm having a bad day, when I'm feeling fat or unattractive, I try to avoid Facebook, because I don't want to see pictures of people dolled-up at parties, the selfies of people in their workout clothes with six-packs and the beach-bikini photos. 

As much as we know it's wrong to envy, sometimes social media makes it particularly hard, because it preys on our insecurities. The internet is rampant with photos like Kang's, that show people looking their best, but few like Brumfitt's that draw attention to their flaws. 

Social media sites like Facebook allow us to project an idealized image of ourselves to the world, and I know I'm just as guilty of this as anyone. We are able to weed-through unflattering photos of ourselves and only post the best ones. We can share statuses of our accomplishments and success stories, while keeping our not-so-proud moments quite. But the problem is, our lives are much more than just the highlights. We can't be perfect every second of the day!

Maybe we should be alright with sharing some of the darker times. Maybe, like Brumfitt, we should post an unflattering picture now and then.


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