The New Sexy Pregnant Body

Having recently entered the realm of pregnant women, I have found myself eager to learn all I can about a stage of life I previously had not paid much attention to. My table has slowly become piled with books on pregnancy and babies and childbirth – all full of interesting facts that have somehow failed to be a part of my life thus far. I remember flipping through a pregnancy book late one night and snickering out loud as I read a certain passage. I found it comical enough to read out loud to my husband. It said something along the lines of culture has totally shifted in America so that being pregnant is now a very sexy and sensual state of being. The book admonished that since it is such a highly attractive time of life, be sure to revel in your new found sexiness. Ha. I closed the book after that and proceeded to lie in bed until the nausea left me long enough to slip into sleep.
Yet the book’s story of a newly founded “sexy pregnant” culture in America fascinated me. Sexy is the last word I would personally use to define the nausea, overwhelming tiredness, constant eating, lack of digestion, and inability to still button up my pants. The trend was therefore easy for me to scoff at until one afternoon, as I laid on the couch in between running for the bathroom, a Tempur-Pedic mattress commercial came on the TV. The commercial started off with a variety of people of all ages and walks of life testifying how much they love their Tempur-Pedic mattress. And then there she was. The commercial zoomed in on the “pregnant” woman, a woman who wore a slinky black dress that barely covered her bulging stomach – emphasizing her long, slender legs. The strapless black dress also highlighted her arms as she spun around on stiletto high-heels that matched the little dress. I was stunned. I didn’t even buy that she was pregnant. Everyone else on the commercial was dressed completely normal – outfits one would wear to work or school. And then here was the pregnant woman dressed as if she were going out for cocktails. And not only that, she accompanied her little strut on film with her line “ask me about my mattress.” What?

The commercial ended I felt like maybe I grasped what the book was talking about a little more. There hasdefinitely been a culture shift. Where has it come from? Is it a good change? I think these would be interesting questions to explore as our culture becomes increasingly more geared towards the sensual. Are pregnant women becoming more of a symbol of the act that got them there, or a symbol of new life? With a million different pressures already, it also seems a little much to require appearing “sexy” to a pregnant woman’s to-do list. What about comfortable, happy, radiating, or beautiful? While it seems positive that women are no longer expected to feel shameful, bashful, or a need to hide pregnancy, has our culture taken the liberation too far? In my opinion, the shift represents what our culture currently values and thatis what really needs a good change.

Pictures of then and now:


—by RFZ

6 thoughts on “The New Sexy Pregnant Body

  1. ALA says:

    I agree with CPC in that pregnancy certainly is a beautiful time… plus you get a new wardrobe :). Yet it is interesting that not even pregnant women are exempt from the hypersexualization the media pressures women to conform with. in fact, there is this new trend in Hollywood, and even among our sisters in which anorexia is accompanied by pregnancy. It is no longer acceptable for even pregnant women to have extra fat. If they cannot have the abs of a supermodel, they must have the limbs of one. Just look up a couple picture of pregnant movie stars to see what I mean. Check out this link:

  2. GoodReason says:

    Yeah, for this old lady, seeing pregnant women with bare midriffs and tight fitting tops has been one of the biggest changes over the past decade. I guess we don’t get a break from having to look sexy even if we’re 9 months pregnant now!

  3. Janille says:

    A pregnant woman has always been a symbol of a man’s virility and sexiness as well, much more so than a woman’s sexiness, even today. And while I appreciate stylish fashions for expectant mothers, I can’t imagine anything more torturous than trying to walk around on stilletto heels in the 3rd trimester – yet this is now an ideal?

    And, if the pregnant belly is so sexy and desirable that it must be splashed all over the media, why then is the post-pregnancy mommy body not also acceptable and sexy? Yet after we have our babies we must then rush off to the plastic surgeon to “fix” our bodies so we can be sexy again. A double standard and a mixed message.

  4. CPC says:

    I definitely felt sexy when I was pregnant, but not in a wear lingerie and stiletto heels kind of way. It was more of a confidence in the knowledge that my amazing and feminine body was able to create and sustain life. And more of a lounge around in linen maternity pants and eat mint chocolate ice cream kind of way.

  5. arigoose says:

    I am just as puzzled as you. I have worked with young children for 8 years now and it’s interesting to see the different demeanor and dress of their moms who are pregnant. I see the whole spectrum and it is interesting to me this shift in perception of pregnant women.

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