While motherhood is a unique experience, many mothers experience one thing commonly: a certain ‘guilt’ associated with them feeling they are not doing enough. It can be a result of having to go back to work shortly after giving birth, not being able to breastfeed them as often as they would like, or something else.
So, if you are a new/first-time mother, know that you are not alone and even celebrities go through these experiences. Recently, it was actor Mindy Kaling who opened up about ‘breastfeeding guilt’. In an Instagram post, the Office actor wrote that she had to supplement her milk supply when she could not produce breast milk to feed her babies, and that led to her panicking and feeling guilty.
Now, actor Kalki Koechlin has given us a peek into what it looks like to feel guilty after becoming a mother. While mothers always do things in the best interest of their children, sometimes they feel they are inadequate. Kalki shared what appears to be a throwback photograph on set, while getting her hair and makeup done.
She clicked a mirror selfie and wrote in the caption, “In memory of mom’s guilt, raging boobs and bionic bodies.” The accompanying hashtags read, “#workingmama”, “#whatwecarry”, “#motherhood”, “#theelephantinthewomb”.
Interestingly, the Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani actor, who welcomed daughter Sappho in 2020, posed with breast pumps attached to her body. While breastfeeding, breast milk and pumps are still stigmatised around the world, many celebrities have gone public with their posts and pictures, talking about their breastfeeding journey in a bid to normalise it.
Breast pumps are usually used when the mother cannot physically feed her baby and is, therefore, pumping milk and storing it for a feed later.
In one of her earlier posts, Kalki had also talked about something called “breast engorgement” — a painful condition that causes the breast to swell and become tight — owing to the fact that her daughter only wanted to be fed from one of her breasts. She had to be rushed to a clinic wherein her breast was “kneaded like a dough” in order to relieve her of the hardness caused by milk accumulation.
“I do feel like in society it’s all about the baby, and not enough about the mothers. Both of them need to find their comfort zones in this early and challenging stage of growth,” the caption accompanying her video read. “I realised It’s so easy to say from the outside that you don’t have to breastfeed, you can just use the breast pump or formula. But when you’re in it, you feel so many pressures,” the actor wrote.