Plus-Size, Pregnant & Proud: CafeMom's Latest Mission

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When a woman is faced with those two undeniably vibrant pink lines staring back at her, no less than one thousand emotions flood at once. In one moment, the entire world shifts in every physical and emotional way possible -- and it's a universal truth. So in the age of limitless information, she begins to oversaturate herself with trusted lists of what to do and not to do next. Most of the information lines out average risks, but is generally upbeat. Do a little of this, a little sprinkle of that, and there's a good chance you'll have a happy and healthy pregnancy.

  • And while there is plenty of scary and overwhelming information that's applicable to any woman, when a mom-to-be is plus-size, the tone of that information takes a grim turn.

    Conditions like gestational diabetes and preeclampsia are presented as certainties. They say things like your fat will make it hard to find the baby's heartbeat, you likely won't feel kicks, labor will be all that more excruciating, and worst of all, you have an increased risk of miscarriage.

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  • The truth is, plus-size women have healthy pregnancies and births every day.

    But looking at the Internet, you'd never know it. Despite the progress we've made in body positivity, pregnant women are still mainly portrayed as thin women with beautiful basketball bumps. In reality, more than half of American women are plus-size and many are in their prime child-bearing years. 

  • Dealing with medical realities is a necessity for everyone. But the culture of fear surrounding plus-size pregnancy often crowds out the inherent joy.

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    iStock.com/chameleonseye

    Plus-size moms-to-be are often presented with the bleakest of medical outcomes based solely around their number on a scale. That prejudice often stops providers from looking beyond weight, which can have serious implications for women of bigger sizes.

  • Fat women are presented with fewer clothing options, are discriminated against in the workplace, and are ignored in media. Plus-size pregnant women are even more isolated.

    In an effort to bridge the gap, CafeMom sought to shed a new light on plus-size pregnancy in a way it had never been illuminated before. We aren't here to be doctors -- we're here to be beacons. To show plus-size women that they are worthy of being seen, being loved, and being respected.

    Our coverage intends to provide comfort in solidarity. We plan to show what plus-size pregnancy really looks like, by photographing real moms-to-be who have different plus-size body types. We will give plus-size moms a place to share their struggles, as well as their stories of happy, healthy, hopeful pregnancies. And we will feature articles that cover unmet practical needs, from lack of plus-size maternity wear to how to deal with rude doctors (or worse, insensitive friends and family members). Through numerous personal stories, plus-size women who are expecting will finally see themselves where they have been long ignored. 

    You are big, you are beautiful, you are pregnant, and you are not alone.