Putting on weight during pregnancy is the most natural thing in the world, but there is still a stigma associated with it along with an unsaid pressure which expects women to look like they had not given birth at all. Bodyshaming is a problem, and with social media it has taken a more glaring shape — that of personal slights — and is no longer a casual observation.
Actor Sameera Reddy too faced the brunt of it, and in this video, she speaks about it with an aching honesty, entreating women to accept themselves. She started her talk by sharing how she was overweight as a child but starved herself to death to look the way she used to. Things happened after she was pregnant. "I got pregnant and I had this vision in my head. I really, desperately wanted to be the cool mom who would have a really slim body and a bump. And it was nothing like that."
She was bedridden for eight months, was given hormones shot. "I went from 72 kgs to 105 kgs. And when I gave birth, I was depressed as hell. I had a C-section. I didn't know what was happening...I was very disillusioned when I gave birth. I was disillusioned to the point where I was disconnected. Nobody spoke to me about this. That is the reason I am talking today. Nobody told me, 'Sameera it could go wrong', 'Your hormones could go for a toss', 'You could have something called post-partum depression."
"You have everything ready but you are not ready," she added sharing that she could not bring herself to hold the baby after he was born. "When the baby came, I felt completely disconnected. I gave him to my husband and said, I don't feel good about this. Please take him. It took me a week to understand what was going wrong."
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Throwing light on what she was going through then, she said, "I had so much self-loathing. I would look at the mirror and ask, 'What happened to Sameera Reddy?' Because everybody reminded me of what I was. It made things worse. I had women judging me."
After making peace with her body, she decided to get pregnant again. Except this time, she convinced herself to enjoy the process and herself. "I can't be a 'fake it till you make it' girl anymore." "Let's all support each other. Support don't judge and most importantly I say this, women are freaking amazing. Pat yourself in the back. Do not look at the mirror and loathe yourself," she advised in parting.