I first saw this a few weeks ago when I made a Target trip for my wife, and a nursing bra was on the list. That really should have been its own post, because it was a pretty iconic event: man goes to the store 30 minutes before closing to buy a nursing bra, the little pads that keep milk from soaking through to everything on earth, baby wipes, etc, with no woman or baby along for the ride. But I digress.
If you're unfamiliar with just what a nursing bra is, as I was, here's the idea: the front has this quick release hook system going on, instead of being sewn into the straps and whatnot. Just pop the hook, and you've got easy access to feed that baby.
So here's the picture above the nursing bras at Target:
Ladies and Gentlemen, I'm sorry if this is a disappointment or otherwise comes as news to you. But if you look like that, you do not require a nursing bra. Look at those abs. They did not recently have a child not-so-hidden behind and around them. Stretch marks? What stretch marks? She's well-rested, made up, hair done, tanned, and from the "come hither" stare in her eyes, she's about to give a little peep show, not breastfeed.
I've thought about this ridiculous picture enough times that tonight, when I went to Target, I made a special trip to the nursing bra section just to get this picture. It's not only ridiculous, it's wrong.
I love my wife, and I think she is beautiful. I also know that 3 1/2 weeks after giving birth is probably not going to be the best-looking or best-feeling time of her life. AND THAT IS OK. See, she doesn't have to be tanned and toned, made up and trimmed, ready to shoot me a seductive, smoldering glance at all times. But Target, and nearly any other place she's likely to see a picture of a woman, wants her to believe she does. And they want me to believe that's what I should expect.
This woman is beautiful. And false. She's not nursing, and she's photoshopped into perfection in a studio. This woman does not exist in real life, and I hate that our culture wants my wife, my daughter, you, and me, to believe that she is real and should be what we strive for or expect.
This post could easily turn into a tirade on sexism and objectification of women in popular culture, but who needs that? Know that I know, and know that you know. And I hope that any new moms that see this image at Target can laugh at its ridiculousness, instead of cry because you don't look like her.