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I love my children, I hate my body. (Anonymous)

September 21, 2010

I had my first child, the day before I turned 15. I didn’t have my mom around, so had never known about stretch marks before. I still remember being 6 months pregnant, walking past the mirror on my way to the shower in the bathroom & seeing this great wide purple scar under my belly. I freaked out & cried. I had disliked my body before, but, THIS? It was just before my 17th birthday that I had my second child, a son. Up until then, my stretch marks were on the back of my calves and on my rear, but, my belly scars were at least under my waistline. However, my belly stretched out a great deal more with my son. The stretch marks were wider, and now up my sides & above my belly button, to where now, my whole stomach wrinkles in. It made me wish I hadn’t hated my body before, because I really had nothing to worry about. Even when I was younger, I was too modest to wear a bikini, now it’s simply not an option. I did wear one once & some guy shouted at me as I jumped into the water to “put a shirt on.” & so, I do.

My breast are a whole ‘nother matter. I had developed rather quickly at a young age. I was always small, but, my chest wasn’t. At 14, before I got pregnant, I was 98lbs, wearing a 34c. Yes, I had been sort of starving myself. Not consciously, I was just a very depressed child with no appetite. When I weighed in at the hospital before delivering my daughter, I weighed 183lbs. I breast-fed her until she was a year old, then, was pregnant again shortly after & breast-fed my son until he was a year old. I maintained a weight of around 135lbs, and was a 36c.

I was married to their father until our son was two. The relationship was surrounded by spousal abuse & constant fighting. While he professed his never-dying love of my body (which breeched obsession), he would make me feel incredibly insecure. Anytime a divorce was mentioned he would remind me that, at 19, I wasn’t exactly ideal. What guy would want damaged goods? He said that while he appreciated my body because he knew what it looked like before I had kids & that only a father could truly love a body like mine. I knew that he was only trying to make me believe it so that I wouldn’t leave him, but, I also knew that the truth hurts. One whole week after I left him, a literal weight had fallen off of me. I had lost 25lbs, & subsequently, 2 cup sizes & all plumpness.

That was almost 7 years ago. I am now 25, my son 8, my daughter 10. I’m relatively fit, never weighing more than 120lbs. I have trouble shoving myself into an A cup, so, I wear a B, though it’s irritating that I can hardly expose any cleavage because you can tell that they sag because it droops at the top. So, sometimes I do stuff my bra, not to make them bigger, but, to make them more plump at the top, reducing the sight of the stretch mark indentions. The marks have faded out some, but, not really. It’s not even so much the scars that I hate, it’s the wrinkles they make.

I’ve been with my boyfriend for 6 years now. He absolutely loves my body. He says my stretch marks look like tiger stripes. I think they look like a tiger mauled me! He says the symmetry helps. It’s unsettling to him, that, even after all of this time, I still try to cover myself up during sex. In fact, the first few times we did, I wouldn’t let him take my shirt off! My skin disgusts me, and can take me from being all hot & bothered to ugh. On top of my insecurities of losing him, & even though I’ve been proven wrong before, I worry that I’d never find anyone else to love my body as much as he does.

I even worry about my career. I’m going through Journalism school & the idea of being at the merciless scrutiny of the public terrifies me.

I’m so completely bitter about it. I’ve met many women that had children just as young as I did & they didn’t get a SINGLE scar & they have nice, ideal, breasts. I even project my own disgust onto them. Women who are flawless under their clothes gross me out. I think it takes on a whole personality disorder on its own.

I do like my figure to an extent. I’m not thrilled with this ridiculous muffin top that I’m always having to tuck into my waistband, but, I get so depressed about it, thinking about how young I am, & how I could have had this killer body, but, nooooooo, I couldn’t have also been blessed with great skin. By time I’m old enough that they fade, or I’m rich enough to have them removed, what would be the point?!

So, here are lots of current photos of me. 8.5 years after my last pregnancy. I notice EVERY imperfection. Not only are my breast small, deflated, and saggy, but, the larger one droops lower! I walk around tightening, sucking, tucking in my stomach, which just makes my back ache. I almost forgot to add a picture of the back of my legs — well, leg, rather. These are the only marks I’ve basically gotten over. I used to never wear shorts, but, now I wear some that at least cover the marks on the inside of my thighs.

I really appreciate this blog. It’s incredibly comforting knowing that I’m not really alone, that most mothers do face these postpartum woes. My two sisters-in-law share the same body-image insecurities as I do. I mentioned this site to them when I stumbled upon it looking for exactly this — pictures of women that look like me. By outing myself, I hope that I can encourage them to be brave too.

You may also choose to include:
~Your Age: 25
~Number of pregnancies and births: 2, 2
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are: 8, 10

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20 Responses to “I love my children, I hate my body. (Anonymous)”

  1. Lucy Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 8:21 am

    wow I just have to say that I didnt expect you to look like that! but then again it doesnt matter how many people tell you how great you look if you dont believe it, so, Im telling you you look great, now believe it!

  2. alam Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 8:33 am

    You sound just like me with the poor body image thoughts…I think the same way all the time I became obsessed with it my husband is sick of it …my opinion of u is that u don’t give yourself the credit u deserve I mean u had two kids and u look great..I wish my body was like this I think u should stop all the negative thoughts its hard I know but u have a career a bf and 2 kids focus that energy on them and have fun with life..we only have one life to live so enjoy it. u seriously look great

  3. Shannon Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 10:17 am

    I think you look amazing, sucking in or not! Your ex is horrible to make you so insecure. I am happy for you that you found a great man who loves your body…as many men will!!! I have to give you huge props for nursing your daughter for 1 year…a lot of young mothers wouldn’t do that…you must be an amazing mommy! I am still nursing, and have been for 17 months :) Congrats on your children, and amazing shape of a mother :)

  4. heather Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 10:32 am

    your breast look EXACTLY like mine.
    but you look good imo.
    your ex was a douchebag who knew you could GET better hence why he said the things he did, lots of men do this when they are scared their women will leave them or want better…they tell you you are damaged goods, no one will want you, sometimes they are less obvious about it, but the do manage to get their “unwanted” point to us…dont buy it, your 25 and still have a ways to go, lots of men would want you and treat you like gold, not mind “****” with you, keep your head high :)

  5. Shannon Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 10:52 am

    BTW…I got stretch marks on my legs JUST like you!!!!

  6. Tiphanie Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 10:53 am

    I was REALLY expecting, not to sound mean to anyone, but something MUCH worse. You have a lovely shape and stomach and a killer rear end! :) I totally feel you on wishing i would ve appreciated what i had when i had it,, but our bodies do amazing things,,, and that man , WHEW! no one should say that,, but especially a man, lets see what would happen to his body, oh thats right he CANT give birth to a human being!!! As I’ve said many times before when comes to womanly matters, “No Vagina, No Opinion!” You look good :) Be proud of what you did and for future reference, throw on a teddy and some heels and your man will think he s died and gone to heaven :)

  7. Meghan Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    I posted on here not too long ago with very similar feelings as you. I have stretchmarks in all the same places as you, but you look so much better than me. You look so fit and your hips are curved perfectly!! You look smoking hot!! I didn’t have many stretchmarks and I had super huge boobs after giving birth- but then I lost a bunch of weight. My husband says I look so much better than when I was heavy with boobs and no marks. That’s hard for me to understand. But it is very true that your bodyfriend loves your body. There are not many women out there who can look as fantastic as you-kids or no kids!! I mean that!! Men really don’t pay attention to stretchmarks and they are to an extent turned on by them b/c it means you are one tough, hot momma!! :) boobs are overated!! I’m a B cup now- My husband is an ASSman. Hee hee. he prefers the booty than to some big ol boobies. Your backside looks amazing. and one more thing- you have very beautiful skin tone. If the marks bother you- start exfoliating them every day in the shower, covering yourself in a good cream, and drinking plenty of water. I’m doing this now.

  8. Tiffany Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    Just wanted to say that you have a beautiful body. I LOVE the picture of your back. Really shows off those beautiful curves of yours. I think you look absolutely wonderful!

  9. Mariah Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 5:37 pm

    The way your waistline curves in is truly stunning! The grass is always greener. :)

    You are beautiful, and you have an amazing shape.

    I -like you- suck it in too. Don’t worry too much momma. You’re always going to be beautiful.

  10. alyssa Says:
    September 21st, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    First of all, HUGE kudos to you for continuing your education and moving on from that guy who didn’t recognize the jewel of a person you are.
    Second, that whittled-in waist you have is amazing and very feminine! Please do NOT let any fears of what the public might think of you get in your way of pursuing your career!

  11. lola Says:
    September 22nd, 2010 at 2:36 am

    You have a very good butt.

  12. Sarah Says:
    September 22nd, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    I had no idea you’ve seen so many naked teenage women! (Jokes) Reality check… you don’t actually see these women who had children when they were teenagers naked! Nobody ever does. We all hide our insecurities in push-up bras, long pants, tummy-tucking underwear… And as for how YOU look, you look amazing. You basically have the cutest butt on the planet and such a nice waist. I’m 25 with one child, age three, and I’m very short. Although I’m thin, I DON’T have such a cute pinched waist as you! I’m the jealous one here. You should lift your chin up a little more. Your body went through a lot when you yourself were still a child and you look amazing! How many people can say that?

    Blessings.

  13. terri c Says:
    September 22nd, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    You do have a beautiful shape! One thing I notice with many photos on this site is that because of carrying babies women do have more of a curve in the low back and that can make the belly LOOK, to the woman, much bigger than it really is. Don’t listen to stupid guys on the beach, listen to your boyfriend–you have a beautiful body!

  14. aca Says:
    September 23rd, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    i feel a lot like you. however, as i read your post i couldn’t help but want to scream you are perfect & beautiful. as i finished reading i had to remind myself the same. my breasts look like yours deflated & flat at the top. i have a very difficult time find the right fitting bra. my nipples sink in & i have stretch marks all over my breasts. i have such a hard time feeling comfortable, but in the end i have to remember that this really is indeed, the shape of a mother.

  15. Aiyana Says:
    October 14th, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    I have never seen another woman who has stretch marks look exactly like mine. You got them in all the same places I did… Tummy, butt, thighs & calves. It feels good to know that there are other women out there who’s post baby bodies look just like mine. Thank god for this website. It has helped me realize that all mother’s bodies are normal & beautiful.

  16. satiah Says:
    August 29th, 2011 at 10:40 am

    OMG I feel the same way i absolutely despise my body and it sucks really bad … Im soooo sick of feeling this way ! i almost cried reading your msg …. i feel exactly like you did.. i Have one child at the age of 18 (im now 23)and i see all these young pretty girls with PERFECT bodies running around in cute outfits and bikinis and I HATE MY BODY i am a jealous ragefilled mess and im tired of feeling this way … i really do try to stop but is TOOO HARD !!!! being afrikan American i also deal with the issue of being to skinny … EVERYTHING ABOUT MY BODY IS JUST FUCKED UP LOL

  17. Dee Says:
    November 6th, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    I am in amazement! I looked at your pictures and thought they are mine!! Your body looks exactly like mine! I had my first baby at 19 and her Daddy said the same untrue crap that your ex did. I’m now 25years old and married to another guy whi is so freaking wonderful and we went on to have a second child (a boy) and I got heaps of marks on my legs and but from my son (boys hey lol) I have friends who had kids young and never ended up with a single mark and now wear bikinis etc and I can’t, even though I’m skinny.
    Can I give you a little advice though? Firstly, you are beautiful and your body is amazing!!! I have learnt a few tricks along the way…. Once stretch marks aren’t purple anymore, the sun and/or solarium tanning actually help them fade more and the tan makes the marks waaaaay less noticeable. When I go out for a night out people always comment on how I don’t look like I’ve had kids… This is because I cAn fake it lol. Fake tan on my legs or skin matching pantyhose, hide stretch marks on my legs. A good push up bra and fake tan on my boobs makes stretch marks almost unnoticeable and I wear a tummy sincher

  18. Dee Says:
    November 6th, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    I am in amazement! I looked at your pictures and thought they are mine!! Your body looks exactly like mine! I had my first baby at 19 and her Daddy said the same untrue crap that your ex did. I’m now 25years old and married to another guy whi is so freaking wonderful and we went on to have a second child (a boy) and I got heaps of marks on my legs and but from my son (boys hey lol) I have friends who had kids young and never ended up with a single mark and now wear bikinis etc and I can’t, even though I’m skinny.
    Can I give you a little advice though? Firstly, you are beautiful and your body is amazing!!! I have learnt a few tricks along the way…. Once stretch marks aren’t purple anymore, the sun and/or solarium tanning actually help them fade more and the tan makes the marks waaaaay less noticeable. When I go out for a night out people always comment on how I don’t look like I’ve had kids… This is because I cAn fake it lol. Fake tan on my legs or skin matching pantyhose, hide stretch marks on my legs. A good push up bra (or chicken fillets in my bra) and fake tan on my boobs makes stretch marks almost unnoticeable and I wear a tummy sincher (off eBay for about $12) under tight fitting dresses (to flatten the lose skin on my stomach). A pair of smashing heels helps to lift my bottom. You should be prou of being a young Mum :) :) an that you found an awesome guy that loves you for YOU! And for that extra boost of confidence, fake it till you make it! I always say hehehehe ;) I’m still trying to work out a way to wear a bikini lol but haven’t worked that bit out LOL yet ;) but I do wear a bikini under a dark couloured, see through kaftan (stills fake it till u make it technique lol)

    Hope you can find happiness in all of the wonderful blessings you have in your life :) xx

  19. Tosha Says:
    November 14th, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    We really do have similar bodies! Except you have a way nicer behind :) Your ex was a sad excuse for a man & I’m glad you’ve found someone else!

  20. Sarah Says:
    February 27th, 2013 at 9:34 am

    Awesome post….I feel exactly the same. I have twin sons that are almost 3. What a struggle it’s been. I just wanted to say thanks . Too bad we weren’t all rich and could just buy new bodies….or pay for a personal trainer and dietician. Being employed full time and raising two kids and doing online courses is very rewarding. But at the end of the day it’s not right we hate our bodies

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