Did you know that the number of People magazine headlines mentioning celebrity pregnancies, babies, and baby weight loss makeovers more than doubled between 2003 and 2005 and has been holding steady since?
How are all those stories affecting women? For starters, an endless parade of "perfect" postbaby bodies is not the biggest confidence booster for new moms, most of whom are already feeling vulnerable and prone to self-doubt. But there's something else. Now that baby fever has become big business, it's the Mommy Brand that's being sold to us--the must-have maternity wear and baby gear, the designer diets and fitness plans. None of that has anything to do with Mommy Reality.
We talked to actress Bridget Moynahan, a celebrity mom who is all too familiar with the paparazzi. Here's a sneak peek of what she told us in her interview for Does This Pregnancy Make Me Look Fat?:
"I think it's horrible for young girls and women to see all these pictures of celebrities and the way they bounce back and they're strolling around and they have all these nice things. It's all about how cute the baby looks. It's not that easy and it's not that glamorous. It's not like having the new bag or shoe."
Motherhood is not about diets, workouts, and products. It's about new responsibilities and hopes and dreams for your child. As Moynahan points out, the danger with this "baby (or 'baby bump') as accessory" treatment is that it steers us away form the big picture: what it's really like to be a mother.