Grandmother Holding Newborn girl
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Reddit Totally Sides With New Mom Who Won’t Visit Body-Shaming MIL

She prioritized “losing the baby weight” herself.

Is there ever a reason to make comments about a new mom’s body? Or anyone’s body, really, but perhaps a new mom in particular. Giving birth can change a woman’s body, and any kind of negative body talk could be felt especially deeply. Which is why one new mom on Reddit has decided to stop seeing her mother-in-law after she wouldn’t knock it off with the comments about her changing body and Reddit is absolutely on her side.

The new mom in question took to the popular “Am I The A**hole” sub-Reddit forum with her dilemma. In the five months since welcoming her first baby with her husband, she has been spending time with her mother-in-law. And the comments have been getting increasingly personal.

“My MIL began commenting about how much she prioritized ‘losing the baby weight’ after she had her first baby,” the new mom wrote on Reddit, adding that she didn’t think anything of it at first. “She then started commenting on my babies [sic] chubby cheeks, and how similar they are to mine. I felt a bit hurt but let it slide once again.”

Things came to a head when her husband mentioned in passing that she was planning on running again now that their baby was a little older. At which point her mother-in-law said “‘you’re thinking about trying to run? Shouldn’t you start with walking?’ His whole family was in the room and looked at me waiting for my answer. I am an avid runner who only stopped due to my pregnancy, and her comment really hurt.”

“When I was a teenager I had a really bad eating disorder, one that I am still struggling with,” she added. “Comments on my body or physical abilities are hurtful to hear, and she is someone who I knew talked about peoples [sic] bodies behind their backs, but I didn’t think she would be so mean to my face.”

After this comment left her feeling upset, the original poster decided not to visit her mother-in-law any longer. And she got a lot of support from the Reddit community for her decision.

Some Reddit users found themselves in similar situations with relatives. “My MIL bought me a little book full of calorie counts for Christmas about 15 years ago, and still has no idea why I don’t see much of her,” wrote one person, while another added, “The only relative who has ever commented on my weight is my mother. None of the elders on my side of the family or my wife's have uttered a single word.”

Several people felt as though this type of comment was a generational issue. “It's a common thing that the older generation does. My wife's grandfather always comments on my weight,” they wrote, while another person felt as though this wasn’t really a valid excuse. “I have plenty of older family that's never commented on my weight. Don't use age to excuse toxic behavior.”

This user felt that making weight a negative issue was also toxic for a different reason. “My MIL (75) watches me eat and constantly tells me I eat so slow I shouldn't be so fat. I've loudly said before, especially for the benefit of my stepdaughter, that there are much worse things than being fat, like being ignorant and rude.”

Every woman’s postpartum journey is personal. No one ever needs to comment on their bodies, ever. Protecting that space for yourself and your baby is a top priority. And hopefully, anyone who wants to bring negative body talk to the table will learn to knock it off.