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How to become a mother improved my body image

Study, published in Body picture, investigated the dissatisfaction of breast size.


Out of the 484 surveyed Italian women, 69 percent stated they were dissatisfied, while 44 percent wanted a larger breasts.

Researchers have found that dissatisfaction with breast size is associated with higher levels of perfectionist self-expression (the desire to create a flawless image in the eyes of other people), which is known to contribute to a bad body image.

However, the same association was not found among 54 percent of the women surveyed who are mothers. "Our findings suggest that motherhood can help break the relationship between perfectionist self-expression and dissatisfaction with breast size," wrote Professor Viren Swami.

Swami notes that there are several possible reasons why mothers might be more comfortable with their bodies. But most relevant is that mother and breastfeeding focus on the woman's breast function rather than aesthetics.

Sarah Harry is an expert in body image and disturbed nutrition and founder of Body Positive Australia. She told me that focusing on what your body can do, not what it looks like is definitely working for some women.

Sometimes it works – sometimes women resolve the body's image and problems with eating disorders during pregnancy and early maternity because suddenly everything is a function, "she says.

"They are surprised at what their body can do and feel more respectful of their body – the functionality becomes larger than the image of the body."

Psychologist Marny Lishman is saying that pregnancy and birth is a celebration of what the female body can do.


"It can bring a baby to this world and that's really a miracle. The function of our bodies is much more than just something to look at. The miracle of this and gratitude for it is important, "she explains.

But, of course, that is not always the case. Harry notices that he had many clients who fought with bodies after a baby. "Some women will feel up," she says.

You just need to push your head to the online mum group to see this game. The social expectation that you lose the "baby's weight" and to return to your pre-pregnancy is wide. A well-known face after a baby reveals on social media to add a bad picture of a woman's body.

I've experienced one another. After the first pregnancy I experienced the waves of self-destruction – I barely looked into the mirror and when I did, I did not recognize the body that was facing me.

But after the birth of my other daughter 19 months later, I experienced a deep sense of physical acceptance. Looking back, I see that I have reconciled myself to my body. Was this an appreciation of aesthetic function? Definitely there was an element of it.


"Look what you did!" My sister said when I mentioned my sticks.

Still, there was another element. Looking at my perfect daughter, I made a conscious decision to be a good model. I did not want to pass my bad body. So in the years since I became a mother, I was actively trying to achieve a healthy image of the body.

So perhaps, in some ways, my improved body image results from the function of aesthetics – perhaps for me, the picture of body health modeling role of motherhood function.

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