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On Facebook Watch's Red Table Talk, Ashley Graham spoke to Jada Pinkett Smith about mom shamers
Ashley Graham may still be a young mom, but she's no stranger to shaming mothers. Graham has been grappling with shameful judicial trolls since she gave birth to son Isaac earlier this year. She spoke to Jada Pinkett Smith on an episode of Red Table Talk last week about how it affects her and how she deals with it.
"Mommy Shamers are just mean girls who grew up as mothers," Graham said during the open discussion that included Willow Smith, Adrienne Banfield-Jones and Jessica Alba. "It never feels good when someone tells you that you are not working well enough, that you are doing something wrong."
Graham has regularly shared photos of herself while breastfeeding her son, and as a result, she has regularly received hatred over her decision to "expose" her breasts for the only purpose there is. She tells Pinkett-Smith that people view her body as sexual simply because she has been a plus-size model for so long. Because a lot of people are fat phobic, one-dimensional assholes!
"It's interesting because my entire career has been based on body shame because I'm a curvy girl who came into a thin world and said that my body and other bodies like mine need to be normalized," she said. "I knew (mother's shame) was coming and I was ready to fight it, but it never feels good when someone tells you that you are not working well enough, that you are doing something wrong."
Aside from trying to normalize bodies that are not conventionally thin, Graham is also trying to normalize breastfeeding by sharing pictures of herself while she pumps (backstage at fashion shows and sitting topless on the couch, thank you very much) and Isaac is breastfeeding. Because feeding babies shouldn't be controversial, but the US is full of Puritan donkeys with Freudian problems galore. Here we are.
“My whole career has been based on being sexy, and my breasts have been featured on many magazine covers. So when I turn the page to my baby, they suck on it. I think people just had to change their minds, but they're diverse – functional, ”she said.
Pinkett-Smith echoed Graham's feelings of being ashamed of breastfeeding.
"I remember when I would breastfeed with Jaden and Willow," she said of her two children with husband Will Smith. “Remember, I used to have this little nursing blanket and that would make it so difficult. They're in there, they're choking, I can't see them. I was so scared of it because back when I had it, breastfeeding was like: What ?! What do you do?!"
Ask for more honest conversations like this and less judgment about things that shouldn't be judged. Want to shame someone who didn't vaccinate their children or take action that negatively affects the world around them? DO IT. Everything else is just useless noise.