Pregnancy: A Condition, Not A Dress Code

It is has become admittedly trendy for ladies in the public eye to show off their baby bump as they get further along in months. It seems that ever since Demi Moore pulled off the sexily pregnant look in 1991, other actresses and celebrities have been in search of the same magic. This is evidenced in bikinis, midriff bearing tops, and snug gowns all intended to boast the bump. While I think it’s up the individual woman to decide how much of herself she’d like to show in her pregnancy, I’m adamantly against the idea that a pregnant woman should be held to different standards of dress simply because she is with child. That’s why I was struck by a post by lifestyle blogger Jordan Reid addressing negative comments about a picture she posted of her pregnant self in high heels and hot pants.

Jordan admits that her style has changed a bit since becoming pregnant, as she finds herself putting on some flip flops or sneakers when running around New York City. She acknowledges the safety precautions in keeping herself in flats most of the time but, she says “I’m hardly throwing my heels in the trash.”

In response to antagonistic remarks on her fashionable attire, Jordan rattled off this:

Safety is one thing of course you shouldn’t wear dangerous shoes that could cause you to fall and hurt your baby, which is why I wear flip-flops or sneakers around town and change into heels when I get wherever it is that I’m going. But to say that just because someone’s pregnant, or a mother, means that they should tone it down? Dress more ”mother-like”? Bullshit.

I agree with Jordan in that motherhood proves to be realm in which women are inundated with all kinds of “shoulds.” Men by the way often get off with just a cigar and a handshake. I don’t have to tell you mommies that from the moment pregnancy is announced, a woman practically has to beat away unsolicited advice. Efforts, much like what happened on Jordan’s blog, to control the dress of women seek to make motherhood a one-track road. Establishing a uniform to which all pregnant must culturally adhere to fails to recognize that motherhood and pregnancy is a different experience for all women. By upholding one way of dressing that is befitted for moms, women who seek to express their maternity in other perhaps more creative ways are slandered for not behaving as “proper” mothers. Comfort is individual and shouldn’t be determined in sweeping generalizations about what a pregnant woman should look like. Ironically, it seems that the only people made uncomfortable by Jordan’s hot pants are the people not wearing them.


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