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About This Site

July 5, 2006

One day I sat in a restaurant in Anaheim, California eating breakfast, when a woman passed by my table with her infant carrier in tow. As she lifted it up to fit between the tables, her shirt raised and I saw that, although she was at a healthy weight and her body was fit, she had that same extra skin hanging around her belly that I do. It occurred to me that a post-pregnancy body is one of this society’s greatest secrets; all we see of the female body is that which is airbrushed and perfect, and if we look any different, we hide it from the light of day in fear of being seen. That makes me want to cry. Sure we all talk about the sagging boobs and other parts, but no one ever sees them. Or if they do, it’s in comical form, mocking the beauty that created and nourished our children.

It is my dream, then, to create this website where women of all ages, shapes, sizes and nationalities can share images of their bodies so it will no longer be secret. So we can finally see what women really look like sans airbrushes and plastic surgery. I am asking for mothers to send in photos of bellies, bums, boobs or any other body part (even my lower legs and face show changes since my pregnancies!) to be posted on this website. The pictures can be anything you like from a simple snapshot to something professional. They can be as anonymous as you’d like, or you may choose to have your name and contact info posted with them. They must be tasteful, this is not about pornography.

I really hope that many many women will participate and that many more will benefit. Thank you!

Click here to participate!

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20 Responses to “About This Site”

  1. Jammer Says:
    July 9th, 2006 at 5:31 pm

    This is a great idea! My wife just posted some on our blog. She doesn’t believe me when I tell her how sexy I find her. She brought the best thing ever in both our lives into this world, and I could never thank her enough. What it did to her body is beautiful in that context, even if she doesn’t think so.

  2. J's Mommy Says:
    July 11th, 2006 at 6:03 pm

    what a wonderful thing for women to see. i think you are doing a great service.

  3. Corscorp Says:
    July 13th, 2006 at 7:33 am

    This site has really taken off, B. I love it so much. Congratulations!

  4. ltljen Says:
    July 13th, 2006 at 9:52 am

    I LOVE this site! and I am trying to spread word of it as much as I can. I hope to get some pics on here myself…that’s my goal for the next week.

  5. Anonymous Says:
    July 14th, 2006 at 11:27 am

    Oh my goodness! This is such a beautiful site it has made me cry! But, in a good way =).I have a very skinny sister who managed to remain relatively unscarred and unmarked through her pregnancy. I however now have stretch marks on my stretch marks and am significantly heavier than I have ever been in my life. As I was looking through the posts I realized that I was looking at *MY* belly and body. It was amazing! Thank you so much for doing this!

  6. Bunny Says:
    July 14th, 2006 at 9:13 pm

    I am proud of the body that has allowed me to carry, birth and nurse 2 beautiful children. So often I am the woman pulling my shirt down embarassed that I don’t look like I used to, or like I think people think I should like. Thank you for such a wonderful place to celebrate the soft, nurturing bodies we have now.

  7. Curious Says:
    July 15th, 2006 at 1:17 pm

    Not trying to offend, merely a question. Then how do some women totally bounce back .Not talking about Demi Moore or Hollywood trainers but true women. A woman down the street looks like she never was pregnant. She’s still a tiny thing. I’m not pregnant, not was, but I hate to say it, what pregnancy does to a woman’s body scares me. It’s so damaging. I know pregnancy and babies are beautiful but I guess I couldn’t handle it.

  8. katie Says:
    July 18th, 2006 at 8:29 am

    Curious, it’s true, some women do “bounce back” and look the same as they did before. IMHO, I think most of it is genetics. I know that some women really work super hard through diet/exercise to lose every ounce gained during pregnancy, but even some of those women find that their bodies have reshaped, so that even at their goal weight, they look different than before. And although I understand what you mean when you say pregnancy “damages” the body, from what I understand it’s actually a healthy thing (barring complications, of course) to bear a child. I don’t remember the particulars, but the things that pregnancy and breastfeeding do to a woman’s hormones are healthy, in general — for instance, mamas are less susceptible to some forms of cancer. We’re designed to bring forth new life, and our bodies are amazingly adaptable. It just makes most women look like they’re not 20 anymore — most women’s genes are concerned with a healthy body, not washboard abs or flawless skin! And hey, I wasn’t going to look 20 forever anyway, right? (:I’m glad you asked your question and I’m glad that there are already some pictures on the site of women whose bodies snapped right back into their pre-pregnancy shapes. The thing this site is helping me remember is that we are all beautiful, and the unique ways that our bodies respond to our sons and daughters is part of that beauty.

  9. Anonymous Says:
    July 18th, 2006 at 8:38 pm

    I have had such a hard time accepting my body after two kids. I hated my body before my kids because I was too skinny and was compared to an Ethiopian famine victim, then at the tender age of 20 I gained 60 lbs with my first son (8lbs 1oz) I got stretch marks all over my upper thighs, past my belly button and my boobs. With my second son I gained 40 but didn’t do any further “damage.” Now, I’m 28 and realizing that I can’t feel this way my whole life. Yes, there are women who look like they never had kids, but I don’t. I have a true mammas belly, and I’m proud that I have two healthy beautiful boys. This is about as real as it gets and I’m so glad you started this site. We shouldn’t have to be embarrased…we brought life into this world!!! And Katie you’re right, moms (esp those who breastfeed) have lower risks of breast cancer among other health risks…and most stretch marks ARE genetic :)

  10. Livs Mommy Says:
    July 19th, 2006 at 2:22 pm

    Thank you… for starting this site. I am passing it on to every woman I know…

  11. rilah Says:
    July 19th, 2006 at 5:30 pm

    as most people have said, thank you for this site. i’m currently awaiting my 1st’s delivery at 39 weeks and a day and i’ve put on 35lbs. nothing to be too depressed about, but i gave up an anorexic lifestyle to have this baby – and seeing these pictures has been inspiring.i’ll be linking you on my site, as well.

  12. Anonymous Says:
    July 20th, 2006 at 5:28 pm

    For months I’ve been afraid to look in the mirror because of how my body looked. I’m now in tears, rubbing my belly that has carried 2 beautiful children, that isn’t smooth or tight, that jiggles when I walk, that is a reminder of how full of life I once was. I can begin to see that saggy belly as well used instead of deflated. It is unbelievably wonderful to know what “normal” really is. You are doing such a great thing!

  13. dawn pelsinger Says:
    July 25th, 2006 at 6:19 am

    how wonderful of you to create and publish this blog.i have such a poor body image.i was so glad to see pix of some women who resemble me (5’4″, 215 lbs).

  14. Ilana Says:
    July 26th, 2006 at 10:16 am

    In regards to the comment as to why some women “bounce back”, I am one of those women and will share with you my experience. At 5’7″ I was 130lbs pre-pregnancy. I am very active, was all through my pregnancy, and am a fanatic about healthy eating. I only gained 30lbs during my pregnancy. After giving birth to my daughter I found myself down 20 of those pounds (though she was only 6lb12oz). Within two weeks I was down to 15lbs less than my PRE-pregnancy weight. I was emaciated. And I attribute that to 1) the fact that my daughter was a VORACIOUS breastfeeder and my body metabolized all of its fat to keep up with her (remember, though it doesn’t happen to everyone, if you don’t breastfeed it’s all that much harder for your body to burn the extra fat, especially if you’re choosing to be housebound with your baby and not moving around much), 2) she was extremely colicky and as a result I had to dance ALL DAY with her, and 3) she did not sleep so on top of this huge energy drain from the breastfeeding I was never able to regain any of it through sleep. I imagine I was also blessed with elastic skin and I also only went to 38.5 weeks with her so never got any stretch marks. So in my case it was partly genetics but mostly the SEVERE strain that new motherhood put my body under. Not exactly healthy, if you ask me. I’d probably have been better off with some extra weight left and full nights of sleep.

  15. AC Says:
    July 26th, 2006 at 2:27 pm

    This is an amazing site! Thank you! My mother, 10 years after delivering her second child, is amazingly fit and yet she still complains about the skin around her middle (and stretch marks, and scar…). I’m going to show her this tonight, because I think she still has no idea what a real woman’s body is supposed to look like. Like many of us.

  16. Anonymous Says:
    July 27th, 2006 at 8:28 am

    like most women, i used to view my body as a collection of parts, some up to par, others not (the “problem areas”). it wasn’t until I began feeding my first child everything he needed to thrive using just my own body that i began to see myself as an integrated whole. i am grateful for the change in perspective. PS – when men are in charge, unrealistic standards for women are the rule. if we assume the power that is naturally ours (a power that derives from creating life!) then we can start to set the standards. And finally say to a society of judgemental men with giant beer guts, “hey, i made a person. what’s your excuse?”

  17. Anonymous Says:
    August 4th, 2006 at 3:38 am

    I disagree with the suggestion that it is men that set unrealistric standards for women. I think we are our own worst enemies. I believe that most men are far more accepting of the real female form than we give them credit for. I’m not sure I’d have chosen to have my beautiful daughter with my husband if he had been the kind of person who judged me based on my physical appearance, so missing everything else I have to offer both him, and our child.There is a reason that on planes the safety instructions direct you to put on your own oxygen mask before assisting children. Being gentle, kind and forgiving of yourself as a person rather than dedicating yourself purely to making your children happy shows that you think EVERYBODY is of worth – even you with your unique post-pregnancy body. What a great role model for your children.

  18. Tera Says:
    August 23rd, 2006 at 3:17 pm

    Hallelujah! I have been here hiding my postpartum body because I felt like the only woman who couldn’t bounce back to a slender shape within 6 weeks of birth! Thank you for the reality check.

  19. Ella Says:
    October 20th, 2006 at 5:30 am

    What a great site for the Female/Goddess Empowerment that we greatly need!! My Best Friend just had baby # 1 and feels icky about her body. It grieves me that we are expected to look like Heidi Klum!!!! What beautiful creatures we are that we are afforded the blessing to carry life within us!!! Blessings and Peace to all you beautiful Mothers (LOVE YOU BODIES: YOUR Daughters are WATCHING)

  20. Kristen Says:
    May 29th, 2008 at 11:07 pm

    I just came across this site and am so glad to see that there are other women out there like me. I am 33 yrs old, a former ballerina who is 5’7″ and always weighed around 117 lbs. I had a beautiful, smooth body with rock hard legs and a great 6 pack ab from ballet but all of this changed DRASTICALLY after children. Of course, my children are the loves of my life but it is still so hard to see how other woman look like they never were pregnant after 2 and 3 kids. It truly dumbfounds me. I gave birth to my first daughter at 42 weeks and she weighed 9 lb 12 oz. I was HUGE! I had gained 56 lbs with her due to drinking high protein shakes and being on bedrest for quite some time. After giving birth, I had just a few stretch marks on my lower belly but nothing that was really that visible and my stomach was a littly jiggly but not bad. After my second watermelon weighing 9 lbs 8 oz, I am covered in stretch marks and have horribly loose and saggy skin. I have a terribly hard time living with looking at it every day. It absolutely disgusts me. My sister-in-law has a 5 month-old and within days after she was born, had the flattest, tightest stomach again. She weighs all of 90 lbs and says she is disgusted with her body because of her c-sections scar. I would give anything just to have that scar if I could have her stomach! It comes down to the individual; some of us could say that it is shallow to care so much about our bodies and to just be happy with our beautiful children. Yes, we love our children but not all of us can look at ourselves and feel good and say “hey, I am proud that I look like this!” It’s just not that simple for some of us. My clothes do not fit right. My hips are very small and measure a sz 4/6 but my huge belly hangs out over my pants. It is very hard to find clothing to fit properly. It really is great to see that some others are in the same situation but I have to admit, it is really hard to see these smooth, flat bellied woman after pregnancy. I just don’t understand why some of us are one way and some are the other.

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