Why celebrity baby bump photos should not be sexualized
When blogger/musician Saab Magalona fired back at a tabloid that sexualized her baby bump, it brought an important issue to light
Pregnancy makes a woman more beautiful, there’s no doubt about that. When a mom is carrying her unborn child, there is this glow about her, a radiance she exudes that shows the world just how much joy her heart holds now that she’s about to become a mom.
When celebrities post their baby bumps all clad in bikinis or skimpy clothing, it’s not to show off how sexy they look, but it’s more to show this same pride in their growing bump, their pride in being a woman who can bring new life into the world.
Still, there are some who choose to see these posts as intentionally provocative, even if it’s not the mom-to-be’s intent.
One celebrity who recently experienced this was blogger/musician Saab Magalona, who is expecting a set of twins—a boy and a girl—with husband of two years Jim Bacarro.
After sharing a photo of herself wearing a bikini, a tabloid proceeded to describe her “preggy-sexy figure” without stretchmarks as “appetizing to married men” whose wives surely didn’t look the same way while they were pregnant.
Naturally taking offense, Saab posted screenshots of the article instead of the link (not wanting to give the tabloid more readers), along with a series of tweets.
“I’m not angry, just sad.”
“I believe that the writer is not interested in women. I want to think he does not actually view girls as meat,” she wrote in another tweet. “I know his intention was just to write a clickbait article for a market that normalizes this way of thinking. I’m not angry, just sad.”
The writer of the said article responded to Saab, telling PEP that his intent was not to “sexualize” Saab, but merely to show just how desirable she is even when pregnant, just like he did in past articles on then pregnant celebs Beyonce, Bangs Garcia, and Toni Gonzaga.
He also went on to say that, if she didn’t want it to be viewed that way, then she shouldn’t have posted a photo of herself in a skimpy bikini.
Sexualization is defined as “to make or become sexual or sexually aware or to give or acquire sexual associations.” In this case, it was a clear form of sexualization, even if the writer is insisting that it was not. The mere fact that he objectified a woman and associated her with sexual fantasies or acts is considered sexualization.
There is nothing wrong with feeling sexy while pregnant
To be clear, pregnant women have every right to own their sexuality, to feel good in their own skin, and they also have the right to refuse being objectified.
Many celebrity moms have prided themselves in staying “sexy” while pregnant. A couple of years back, some Hollywood moms-to-be even bedazzled their bare baby bumps.
In the past, we have also featured Celebrity pregnant mom fashions to keep looking sexy, simply because we wanted to celebrate moms who own and flaunt their bumps with confidence and style. But all of this was not done with the intention to present them in any offensive way.
There is nothing wrong with being proud of your body. Being body positive or posting bikini photos doesn’t give anyone license to view any woman, pregnant or not, as a mere sexual object to gawk at or lust after.
Sexualizing women diminishes their worth.
It all comes down to respect. Admiring a beautiful and fit a mom-to-be is one thing, but reducing her to a sexual object to fantasize about is an entirely different story.