Baby Or Career? The “Cardi B” Epidemic Of Shaming Pregnant Women

Earlier this week, Cardi B announced to the world that she was pregnant. A beautiful and glowing Cardi performed on SNL with her belly in a white gown. While her reveal was met with some love, the internet comments started to run rampant with many people questioning why the singer would choose now to have a baby. 

Having Children In Your Twenties Feels Like Getting Pregnant In High School

For the millennial generation, getting pregnant in your twenties is equivalent to having a baby in high school. The shame that we unintentionally place on younger mothers is hurtful. Having experienced pregnancy in my early twenties, I was met with comments like:

“Are you going to keep it?”

“Why would you do this right now?”

“Your twenties are over”

While I was faced with just a handful of negative comments, celebrities like Cardi B are faced with millions. Instead of enjoying a happy pregnancy, she is having to defend her choice to be a mother on radio interviews. What is the problem here?

People See Children As A Tool To Hold You Back

Shaming mothers for having children isn’t a new concept. Lauryn Hill expressed in almost two decades ago in her single, To Zion:

Unsure of what the balance held
I touched my belly overwhelmed
By what I had been chosen to perform
But then an angel came one day
Told me to kneel down and pray
For unto me a man child would be born
Woe this crazy circumstance
I knew his life deserved a chance
But everybody told me to be smart
Look at your career they said
Lauryn, baby use your head
But instead I chose to use my heart

For a woman to be perceived as successful, we are taught to hold off having children and getting married until our thirties. Our twenties are for having fun, making mistakes, and “finding ourselves“. While this path works for some, it doesn’t apply to all. Yes, we have to work harder, we have many restless nights, and it is not always easy but these factors apply no matter when you decide to have children. 

The Advice Of Abortion Instead Of Congratulations

No matter where we all stand on being Pro Life or Pro Choice, if a mother has decided she is happy in her decision to give birth, suggesting an abortion is a crappy thing to do. When did it become acceptable to offer someone advice of abortion?

Pregnancy makes people reflect on their own lives and wonder if they can do it. The fear of having children due to broken families, the economy, and the state of our world politically can make most women second guess their decision to reproduce. It has become easy to shame mothers who would choose this path instead of choosing to abort but the realities of abortions aren’t easy either. It is a choice that haunts most women and can cause complications for future pregnancies. 

Career Or Baby?

Can we have it all? In Cardi B’s case, as she stated in her interview, she is a millionaire and an established woman at twenty five. While that may not be the same story for every mother, the ability to have a baby and a career are not unfound. The shame of mothers isn’t just happening to young, single women. It is occurring to women who are married, established, and ready to become mothers. 

Making the case of career or baby catapults us back to the 1950’s where women were expected to just be housewives and raise their babies. Times have changed a great deal and with help, a woman can continue to work and be a mother. There will never be a time in a woman’s life, no matter when she decides to give birth, that she won’t need help in raising her children. Go ahead and thank your teachers, school bus drivers, and baby sitters.

So mamas, if you have ever been made to feel ashamed for choosing to have children, brush it off. We are celebrating parenthood here. There is nothing more beautiful than bringing life into this world and it is up to us to let that be known. 

Tell us below, has anyone ever shamed you for getting pregnant?

With love,