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Celebrity mums might be out of touch, but they’re still mums

Tori Bowman Johnson

Tori Bowman Johnson

Tori, a freelance writer, has worked in production, talent management & branding since her agency role at Vivien’s Model Management in Melbourne in 2011. Tori has recently launched, The First Word; a conversational podcast for women, particularly those who juggle young children & paid work. Tori is also a very proud mum of two little boys.
Created on May 09, 2024 · 6 mins read
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Celebrity content regarding motherhood doesn’t have to be so divisive. Just remember that behind every celebrity with kids is a mother.

And regardless of job title, financial status, or anything else – all mothers deserve respect and kindness.  

“The fourth trimester has been… humbling! The postpartum period has been filled with exhilarating joy, so much laughter, tears, soo many hormones! I’m proud of everything my body has achieved and proud of the kindness and grace I’ve given myself during this recovery period.”

Vogue recently covered this celebrity post by Suki Waterhouse with such praise. Many fans and followers quickly joined in to comment messages of love, pride and mum-to-mum solidarity. How beautiful! 

Vogue contributor Hannah Cotes wrote a short piece on the social media photo and caption which you can read below:

‘Photos like these matter–it’s reassuring to see someone famous being authentic about the realities of bringing a new life into the world. While many of us know the fourth trimester can be exhausting, challenging, and completely overwhelming (along with all the good stuff), most of what we see on social media are mirages of perfection. Inauthenticity which doesn’t help anyone.” 

I totally agree with Cotes. This raw reflection of what the postpartum period truly looks like (adult women wearing what are essentially nappies), is so uniting as we all feel stronger when we’re able to relate and see reflections of ourselves in other people. 

The other side to celebrity motherhood

On the contrary, a few months ago Vogue posted a video of Miranda Kerr walking viewers through the contents of her hospital bag, ahead of the birth of her fourth child (who has since been born). The video featured a glowing Kerr wearing a Bumpsuit bodysuit, unpacking both her personal bag for the hospital and her babies bag.

A peek into the bags revealed:

Miranda’s Bag (Louis Vuitton)

  • Chrystal Salt Lamp – to set the tone of the birth 
  • Battery-operated candles – to create a serene atmosphere
  • A glass aromatherapy diffuser and an essential oil blend – to compliment the serene atmosphere
  • PJs and a robe for cosiness and comfort 
  • Socks
  • A nursing bra (black and practical RE design)
  • A snack (dried mango) 
  • Her compact hairbrush  
  • Toiletries – toothbrush, toothpaste, Kora Organic Turmeric Scrub, Kora Organic Minty Mist (to reset the energy), Kora Organic Noni Glow Body Oil, Kora Organics Plant Stem Cell Retinol Alternative Serum, Maternity Pads, Noni Glow Face Oil, Kora Organics Body Lotion and a Kora Organics Balm
  • Royal Albert porcelain tea cup to remind her of home 
  • Phone charger and Mophie charger 

Baby’s bag (Dior) 

  • Nappies
  • Wipes
  • Burp Cloth 
  • Baby Outfit (Louis Vuitton)
  • Baby Carrier 

Now before we roll our eyes and think, “oh how ridiculous is the contents of Miranda’s bag”, let’s not. 

Instead, why don’t we take a second to unpack (pardon the pun) the video and be realistic in how we comment? On top of this, let’s also be kind. 

Why the bougie hospital bag isn’t that bad

Firstly – we know that much of the contents are strategically placed as Kerr’s job is to endorse brands and products. Just like any other job, endorsing products is one of the ways Kerr provides for her family (meaning she’s a working mother).

Secondly – okay sure, we don’t all require a crystal salt lamp during birth, nor a porcelain tea cup. However, these items allow Kerr to feel stronger and more comfortable, so good for her. 

While some of the other items in her bag seem unusual, it’s probable that every one of us also took something into the hospital that may have appeared unusual to others. I took a tiny little Hulk toy. It belonged to my firstborn’s best friend and for some reason I was utterly compelled to take it with me. Green for luck? The Hulk for metaphorical strength? Who the hell knows, but I was calmer for it. 

Kerr is a celebrity, we know this. She is wealthy and ‘privileged” (like many white women are), however none of this dilutes the importance or the commitment to her role as a mother 

We should also remember that this particular piece of content was created for Vogue. Arguably the most prestigious fashion magazine in the world, it prides itself on an acute focus on luxury goods, style, and celebrity. If we’re choosing to engage with this video, it’s only fair to structure our expectations accordingly. 

Women supporting women - even celebrities

I felt really compelled to pull these two articles (on Waterhouse and Kerr) from Vogue and unpack each in such a way, as I’ve become overtly protective of all mothers – including celebrities who are constantly in the firing line.

After reading the congratulatory comments under Waterhouse’s post (which are of course well deserved!), I felt pretty flat when reading the comments under Kerr’s video. Most of them were lined with obvious sarcasm – unhelpful and a tad ignorant.

Women have a beautiful way of gathering together and providing a type of support that is unique yet perfectly shaped to make every woman feel whole. 

Occasionally, however, we let ourselves down by attacking each other in a bid to make ourselves feel better or more heard in the moment. Whether driven by insecurity, boredom, or just pure reactivity –  behaviour like this is damaging to the female collective. 

Social media is of course a catalyst for scrutiny, especially for women. It can be unrealistic, damaging at times, and extremely divisive.

Protecting your social media feed

Having said this, we actually hold a lot of power when it comes to what we choose to consume, what we share and what we choose to say. 

Let’s not forget some key things:

  • You can unfollow. If you feel offended by someone’s posts – unfollow. If you feel negative about yourself based on someone else’s account – unfollow. If you feel triggered – unfollow. If you feel excluded – unfollow. 
  •  If you’d like to post photos and videos but feel worried or uneasy about reactions and comments, turn comments off (or block comments from particular people/accounts).
  • If you’d only like your close family and friends to have access to what you post – turn your account to private (before this, block anyone you’d like to exclude). 
  • If you’d prefer not to be tagged in photos by others (i.e. be linked to other accounts) – don’t allow tags or opt to manually approve tags so you retain choice and control. 

While we don’t have full control, there are tools we have access to that tailor our online experience. And if at the end of the day, it’s all simply too much – opt out of social media altogether and take a break. 

Wrapping it up

Motherhood should only ever be a united front by women – even with the presence of social media. We need to let go of the senseless need to judge, compare and critique, and instead accept that if something or someone doesn’t positively serve us – it’s up to us to make a change or opt-out.


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