It has become almost impossible for a woman to go through pregnancy without getting naked for the public eye (read social media).
The trend started in 1991, when a nude photo of pregnant Demi Moore, an American actress, appeared on the cover of ‘Vanity Fair. Pregnancy then, still meant wearing garments that were meant to hide, rather than emphasise a growing bump. It meant putting glamour on hold.
But here she was, on a magazine cover, naked! One hand under her belly and the other covering her breast. It was surprising, and yet other celebrities followed suit – Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, Ciara, Beyonce and Serena Williams, among others.
The trend is now eating up the Ugandan social scene. Everyone now wants to get “nakey nakey” for the camera, their “few” followers on Facebook and Instagram, get “likes” and of course get talked about in Facebook groups like Fresh Peaches and the famous Mama Tendo.
Peaches will talk about the fashion, while the “mamas” and “papas” will wail about the moral implication.
But here’s the thing. Pregnancy is beautiful, powerful and worthy of celebration. You are womanly. You are phenomenal. God bless. But honestly it is okay to skip this strange nudity social media ritual.
You do not have to live life on a public stage, to get judged by people who do not care what you are craving, or how many times you wake up to throw up in the bathroom.
Hire a private photographer to memorise these sweet nine months and then tuck these images in a private photo album, which only you and your husband can see. You can also frame the photos for display in your bedroom.
But to place these photos on Facebook or a WhatsApp status for your “friends” to screen shoot and share with a tabloid, suggests selfishness. That one doesn’t care about that little bundle of joy inside, or one’s family. That it is all about you and no one else.
One may argue that if her husband is okay with it and does not care what she posts on the public domain, it’s okay. But do we ever wonder what our children would do if they found out that we did such?
Your child dresses indecently, and you are advising them to dress up like a sane person, will they listen to you after they find such images?
Think about their schoolmates. Will their friends look at you with respect when they realise that you used to flash your adored body for everyone to see?
Although pregnancy is a life changing experience and every woman’s experience is unique, that does not make it a matter of public concern. Respect your body; keep the nude pictures to you and your spouse!