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Melissa Joan Hart Drops the Ball on Being a Role Model

By jeannesager |

peoplemelissajoanhartSo Melissa Joan Hart packed on the pounds during her pregnancy. That makes her different from any other pregnant woman in America, how?

The former Sabrina the Teenage Witch star showed off her bikini-worthy bod in People last week, but it was her words that cut deep into the psyches of moms everywhere.

A picture of her post-partum at one hundred fifty-five pounds, snapped on the beach, was “horrifying,” Hart told People. That’s why she lost weight. Not because she felt physically bad at her weight. Because she cared what everyone else thought of her.

Wow, how, SHALLOW of her. Yeah, yeah, I know, she lives in Hollywood – she’s supposed to care what the public thinks about her. She points out that living in Hollywood puts huge pressure on you, and I’d bet it would. But if you’re going to use that as your excuse, you can just as easily use it as your soapbox. Because Hart is one of those women who can make a statement to the world that sets the world afire and lets other women know it is OK to walk outside of their houses with their heads held high in the days after they give birth.

But where she had the chance to be a wonderful anti-dote to the thousands of celebrity women who practically prance out of the hospital with their twiggy forms back and make the rest of us feel even worse about ourselves, Hart chose the wrong route. Showing off her hard fourteen months of work was a great example to women that you can do it, maybe. But the words “horrifying” about her post-partum body undid much of that positive message.

What happened to being honest about what happens to a woman’s body during pregnancy? To facing up to the fact that the weeks after having a baby are hardly the time to focus on weight loss/gain because you’re focused on a new life?

Image: People

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About jeannesager

jeannesager

jeannesager

Jeanne Sager is a freelance writer and photographer living in upstate New York with her husband and daughter, Jillian. She maintains a blog of her award-winning columns at jeannesager.blogspot.com.

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4 thoughts on “Melissa Joan Hart Drops the Ball on Being a Role Model

  1. R. Mattson says:

    Hold on a minute. She was being honest! I don’t think she’s doing anyone a disservice by being brave enough to say she felt horrified at having so many people see how she looked when she was still carrying all the baby weight. She reacted the way most of us do. I think she would be a worse role model if she acted holier than thou, pretended it didn’t bother her to have an unflattering picture of herself splashed all over, or refused to look at it as a wake up call that she needed to get her health and weight back under her control.
    Some of us can ignore how we really feel about that weight because of all the excuses we’re given by society. “You just had a baby. You’re nursing and still need extra calories. Don’t be so hard on yourself just look at that beautiful baby.” etc.
    What we really need is a role model like her who tells the truth, gives us the kick in the rear to motivate us (like a true friend would) and doesn’t make us feel like losers for it taking us a long time and a lot of hard work to get to our goals.

  2. Lucky says:

    I agree R. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being honest about your self image. Maybe we shouldn’t be worried about what other people think but we do, and to deny us the right to feel that way is shameful and can even cause more damage. “What’s wrong with me that I don’t like my body AND everyone’s telling me I don’t like if for the wrong reasons?!” We all have a right to have our feelings validated.

  3. Kamikaze goldfish says:

    I agree with R and Lucky. So many women in this country gain an unhealthy amount of weight during pregnancy and remain obese throughout their lives. That’s not doing a service to anyone. Now at 155lbs, she was hardly “obese” but I don’t think that means she should be criticized for wanting to lose those extra baby pounds. It’s ok to still think about yourself after you have a baby. I’m a mom and I get a little tired of fat women telling me that I must not love my children because I go to the gym for an hour 4 days a week.

  4. Mack N Gwen says:

    She’s short, so it’s probably a perfectly healthy weight…There is nothing wrong with a woman taking control of what she wants for herself and devoting a little personal time…it’s good to be at a decent healthy weight…i think it sends a good message…it’s not like she is anorexic and is condoning something unhealthy…why are people so negative about someone who wants to stay in shape and lead a healthy life? I’m sure she’s just as busy as an average mom…and besides the publicity, who’s to say she’s not alot like us average, regular moms? Quit hating on people…it’s pathetic, petty, immature, and ridiculous…and most people were offended about the scrutinization of how much a person weighs…this is just another example of double standard. Please!

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