Why Celebrating the 'Mombod' Is Just as Offensive as the 'Dadbod' Trend

pregnant woman mom bodyWelp, we knew this one was coming: In response to the "dadbod" trend celebrating average men's bodies (defined as a "nice balance between a beer gut and working out"), we now have ... drumroll please ... the mombod! Defined as ... well, I'm not sure exactly. A post-partum tummy? Saggy boobs? Um, has anyone thought this one through?! 

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Look, I totally get why people are trying to make the mombod a thing, and I completely understand the dadbod backlash, which basically asks why men suddenly get to be off the hook for being out of shape when women are expected to be bikini ready pretty much the second they give birth. But that's nothing new: Dadbod is just the most recent manifestation of an infuriating double standard that's been around since, well, since moms and dads have had bods of any kind at all.

However, even if the dadbod/mombod trend is more realistic and less punishing than the ideals we're typically supposed to be striving for, it's still, ultimately, a stereotype. And not only are stereotypes limiting, they're insulting to anyone who doesn't fit the bill -- which means that mombod, like dadbod, completely misses the point.

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I have three kids, and over the past 14 years, I've had all sorts of different "bods." The enormously pregnant bloated bod, the smushy, amorphous post-partum bod, the I-just-quit-breastfeeding-and-my-boobs-are-like-empty-socks bod, the "Oh hey! My pre-baby jeans fit!" bod. During each of these phases, I was still a mom. So weren't all of those bods techinically mombods?

Which mom gets to claim the "mombod?" Shouldn't we all? Flat tummies, squishy tummies ... all of us are still moms, and we have bodies.

It just doesn't make any sense. Instead of headlines praising new celebrity moms for their inexplicably flat abs, are we going to start to see magazine covers ask which celeb mothers have the best mombod? Would that really be any better?

Here's a crazy idea: How about we stop making such a big deal about people's bodies, period? Mom, dad, sister, brother, grandma, grandpa -- whatever. How about we start paying attention to what people think and do and stop making such a ridiculously big deal about how they look?!

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Of course that's never, ever going to happen. I'm not fool enough to believe that it could, nor am I naive enough to think that women are ever going to get as much of a pass when it comes to their appearances as men. But I'd rather spend my time trying to figure out how to shift our focus from outer to inner beauty than making up new terms and trends for completely normal body types ... and pitting moms against one another.

What do you think of the mombod trend?

 

Image via © iStock.com/RuslanDashinsky

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