• Tue, Nov 13 2012

Keep Your Naked Baby Bump To Yourself — It’s Creeping Me Out

If you are expecting a baby I don’t need to see your naked baby bump. Especially if you are posting it on Facebook or Instagram or another form of social media. I’m totally fine with you never showing me your stomach, no matter how far along in your pregnancy you are. To be totally honest, I have zero interest in seeing anyone’s stomach, even if it is housing what will one day be born into a relative of mine.

From The Jewish Daily Forward, writer Monica Osbourne laments how being pregnant elicits all sorts of shameless demands from people with voyeuristic drives to see her naked stomach. And Monica should know, because she’s pregnant.

This is the first time that people I hardly know have asked me to reveal my bare mid-section on social networking sites for all of my so-called “friends” to see. What was previously an indecent form of exhibitionism has become a standard behavior, the expected conduct of pregnant women. It’s your obligation to show us your stomach, the voyeurs suggest, and it’s our right to see! Instead, I flash a well-practiced look that says, Surely you jest.

Back the eff off people! I can’t imagine asking anyone to see their naked stomach, because I’m not some creeper who wants to invade someone’s privacy, but also because I just don’t find it that interesting. If I were with a close friend or family member who was expecting and they requested that I feel their growing belly, I could see doing that, but it would never be a desire of mine, no matter how close I feel to the woman carrying the baby. If anything I’m always super aware of how a pregnant woman’s body is being invaded constantly, not only by family members but by total strangers, and it makes me feel protective of the expectant moms-to-be because I know when I was pregnant I despised people touching me or my stomach. Or requesting that they see how my unborn child was growing.

I find it particularly puzzling when women only a few weeks along snap photos of their flat naked stomachs in the bathroom mirror, yoga pants pulled so low one can make out the top of whatever Victoria’s Secret underwear they’re wearing, and ask the world to comment on their so-called “baby bump.” And many women post photos weekly or daily, transforming social networking pages into a breeding ground for their new all-consuming identity as a mother.

As any article by STFU Parents tells us, it’s that we are a nation of attention whores and too-much-information-spewing over sharers, especially when it comes to our pregnancies and our children. Maybe this is just me, but when I was pregnant I didn’t have any interest in seeing how other women looked during various stages of their pregnancies. The human body is beautiful and giving birth is a miracle, but I can happily live my life never seeing another woman’s belly stretched to ten times it’s usual size and how her skin has changed since getting herself knocked up. I’m sure you’re huge and bloated and you have stretch marks and hurray, I’m happy you are having a baby but I just don’t care.

I can see taking photographs to put in a nice album to remember all the stages of pregnancy and to share with your family. That makes sense. But I can’t understand wanting to share pictures of your naked baby bump with everyone on your Facebook page , especially considering I am “friends” with my dentist on Facebook. The person who cleans my teeth never ever needs to see my naked flesh, ever. That goes for cousins I rarely speak to. I don’t fully understand why people want to show these photos or why other people want to see them. Yes, you are pregnant. Yes, your stomach is growing. Yes, there is a baby in there. But for me at least, I’d much rather see the baby when it’s not distorting your organs and living inside of your stomach. No matter how cute you find your baby bump, to me it will never be as cute as the human living inside of it.

(photo:  kaarsten/shutterstock)

 

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  • chickadee

    Yes. This x 100. I am really puzzled/horrified by the number of naked/decorated/highlighted baby bellies that my friends think is entirely reasonable to take and distribute on social media.

    One friend, bless her little heart, had photos of herself sprawled on the bed with her shirt pulled up, looking for all the world like pregnancy porn. Very disturbing.

    • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

      hahahahaha!!!!!!! Pregnancy porno!

  • C.J.

    Someone I know posted the progression of her babybump from beginning to end all in one photo. She is a photorapher so she knows how to edit it all in to one photo. She wore the same long black flowy dress in each pose. It was very classy looking. I don’t mind somthing like that. I don’t want to see naked baby bellies either. I didn’t think mine was all that attractive when I had them and I certainly didn’t show it to anyone else so why would I want see anyone elses. I also never understood women who have their bellies hanging out of their shirts. Why is it so hard for pants and shirts to meet.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001337578929 LH Smith

    Obviously this is the opinion of the author. I have to say I love seeing the baby bumps bare or otherwise that people I care about share because I’m genuinely happy for them. I find the expectant mother to be an amazingly beautiful category of womanhood in this life. It is really a personal preference.. I’d advise those you are in contact with if that bothers you or hide their posts if you must. But I typically rejoice at seeing motherhood in full bloom.

    • FF4life

      I love my friends too..but if they just got their boobs done or their vagina rejuvenated I would not be excited to see pictures of that either.

    • LH Smith

      Those are more private areas of the body where a belly really isn’t… you see them all the time when women wear bikinis on the beach. A pregnant one looks different in shape, but that’s about it. Definitely not in the same category as boobs and vagina as far as how private it is. But again, it’s not hard.. just simply don’t look.

    • FF4life

      I don’t care to see anyone in their bikini either. Especially considering that most of them are ill fitting. I don’t understand how some people can be so uncomfortable being seen in a bra and panties but can change their mind and suddenly feel comfortable just because they put on a bra and panties out of Lycra and call it a bathing suit. Get real.

      If people want to take private pictures of their naked bumps and show them to people who ask, whatever.. But I don’t want to be scrolling through my news feed and see a million pictures of someone’s naked bump and their pants pulled down so low I can see pubic hair.

  • Julie

    I don’t particularly want to see half naked of anyone on facebook. Pregnant or otherwise.

  • Amber

    I get and understand this article, but it’s not that different from bathing suit shots. Maybe it’s just my facebook friends, but EVERY summer they post tons of pics of them in bikinis. You see more skin there than a pregnant belly.

  • Jen

    I love baby bumps. Mine was never round nor attractive and covered in marks, but after 4 miscarriages, I was delighted it was mine and still love seeing them.

  • C.F.

    Thank you so much for this. I am pregnant and I was saying this exact same thing to my family the other day. I don’t want a bunch of “strangers” seeing my naked stomach. I honestly have no desire to see anyones “bump”. They looked at me like I was crazy, but I feel like that is personal.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikole.summers.7 Nikole Summers

    Yeah, I almost feel like being visibly pregnant I am expected to take belly pictures. I’m on number 4 and I never felt like baring my belly for all to see. I don’t understand it, and all the weird photoshoots with props and them in sexy nighties and stuff. I don’t understand why it’s considered cute.