A Canadian mother went to the beach, deciding to sunbathe publicly in a bikini for the first time in more than 13 years. She left the beach in tears.
The 33 year-old mother, Tanis Jex-Blake, said a woman and two men hurled insults at her because of her stretch marks, which, any mother will tell you, are inevitable after giving birth. She stayed strong while at the beach, but ultimately ended up sobbing on the drive home from the beach.
Inspired and incensed by the situation, she wrote an open letter on Facebook that has since gone viral. It’s printed below, and it’s a beautifully honest take on the issue, showing why pregnancy and motherhood are nothing to be ashamed of.
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This is an open letter to the 2 guys and 1 girl who decided to skip work today in Sherwood Park where they were building a house , but instead decided to come to Alberta Beach to relax in the sun, enjoy the water and some beers.
I’m sorry if my first attempt at sun tanning in a bikini in public in 13 years “grossed you out”. I’m sorry that my stomach isn’t flat and tight. I’m sorry that my belly is covered in stretch marks.
I’m NOT sorry that my body has housed, grown, protected, birthed and nurtured FIVE fabulous, healthy, intelligent and wonderful human beings.
I’m sorry if my 33 year old, 125 lb body offended you so much that you felt that pointing, laughing, and pretending to kick me.
But I’ll have you know that as I looked at your ‘perfect’ young bodies, I could only think to myself “what great and amazing feat has YOUR body done?”.
I’ll also have you know that I held my head high, unflinching as you mocked me, pretending that what you said and did had no effect on me; but I cried in the car on the drive home.
Thanks for ruining my day. It’s people like you who make this world an ugly hateful place. I can’t help but feel sorry for the women who will one day bear your children and become “gross” in your eyes as their bodies change during the miraculous process of pregnancy.
I can only hope that one day you’ll realize that my battle scars are something to be proud of, not ashamed of.