COMEDIAN Amy Schumer is never one to shy away from revealing the naked truth about motherhood, and her recent Instagram post is another perfect example.
Schumer, who gave birth to son Gene in 2019, shared a selfie taken in her bathroom in which she appears nude with her arm covering her chest, along with the caption: “Feeling like my c section looks cute today!” As much as the picture caption amuses, there’s also a meaningful message behind it, reflected in the comments, many of which are from other mums who gave birth via caesarean section.
“Feel like mine lookin’ hot today too! What a coincidence!” wrote singer Vanessa Carlton under the post.
“Amen sister! Scars are beautiful,” commented Carri367.
Others, however, revealed they don’t have the same body confidence as Schumer, who is married to chef Chris Fischer.
“I need to love my c-section more,” wrote Mimijmeyer. Another user, Nattybangbang, said: “Amy you are amazing!!!! So brave! I hate my scar ugh.”
In Ireland the rate of C-Sections in 2015 was 32.3% for women having their first baby and 30% for women having their second or subsequent baby.
If C-sections are so common though, why are many women still self-conscious about their scars?
“There are a wide range of factors that influence how we feel about scars we may have, and society places a great deal of importance on how we appear,” says environmental psychologist and wellbeing consultant Lee Chambers.
“When we amplify this with the cultural connotations of scars being negative, due to not being a part of modern beauty standards and being utilised on [tv and film] characters depicted as evil, it is no surprise that having a scar can make us self-conscious.”
Chambers says Schumer’s photo is inspirational for several reasons.
“Due to scars having a [certain amount of] stigma, they are less likely to be seen and being able to see the scars of others in a positive light helps to create a level of comfort in accepting our scars and committing to being more positive about them.”
More importantly, it helps people realise that “behind every scar is a story”.
Chambers continues: “They are a natural part of the healing process, and seeing somebody in a position to be judged, have the courage to share her experience, encourages us to embrace our body as it is.
“This, in turn, helps us express the emotions we have surrounding our scars, as it is often the psychological impact of suppressing these emotions that can cause our feeling of self-consciousness.”
“Social media is often full of perfect motherhood images that create unrealistic expectations and feelings of guilt or self-doubt,” adds Ivana Poku, life coach and founder of Mum’s Journey.
“A lot of mums with a c-section scar also struggle with confidence, so being honest about it can help boost [that].”
In light of the fact some celebrities seem in a hurry to show off their ‘snap back’ bodies just weeks after giving birth, it’s heartening to see Schumer being honest about the realities of post-partum life.
They are a natural part of the healing process, and seeing somebody in a position to be judged, having the courage to share her exprience, encourages us to embrace our body as it is.