This week, I’ve discovered something amazing. Despite the loss of the physical copy of Emma’s Diary (which, in all honesty, was no great loss at all other than the loss of blog material), I have discovered the online version! Yes, your fix of condescending, “Isn’t My Life Perfect” pregnancy advice is now available in a handy online guide!
As a side note, I don’t usually get this worked up about any publications, let alone magazines, but Emma’s Diary is sent out by Bounty, and when it comes to Bounty I don’t even bother trying to control my anger (I’ll be doing a post about Bounty soon to explain exactly why that is). It isn’t really the fact that it’s all about the perfect pregnancy, because some people will have a perfect pregnancy, and some people will have the kind of lifestyle this fictional Emma is used to (the blatant attempts to be politically correct by giving her friends a variety of names they’ve clearly seen and thought “Ooh, that’s ethnic, let’s use that and show how varied we are” do annoy me just in how blatant they are about it, but that’s their prerogative).
My problem with it is that it’s given out to every pregnant woman at her booking-in appointment, regardless of background etc. Maybe they’d be accused of profiling, but surely you could find some arbitrary categories to make it a bit more applicable – a special one for younger mums (it’d probably read something like this blog, in all honesty), because a lot of what Emma’s experienced in her pregnancy, I haven’t been able to associate with at all. The same goes for low-income families – jetting off on Babymoons was a distant dream for D and I. Either having different guides for different demographics, or a guide that is maybe a bit more realistic to a wider spectrum of people, rather than seeming (at times) like a gloaty “look at what you could’ve won if you’d waited to be financially secure”. I’m not expecting the world to support my decision to keep the baby when it will be a struggle at times with money, but I’d like to not have a magazine reminding me about how unacceptable my situation is, nestled in amongst the leaflets about breastfeeding and the Anti-D injection.
But that’s just one part of my much wider issue with Bounty as a company and their horrendous practices. As for this week’s diary entry, I was surprised to see that for the most part, it was actually quite normal – she’s talking about how she wishes she knew what the sex of the baby is, which is something I can definitely empathise with, and she has an almost-irritatingly cute nickname for the bump (Flump, if you’re wondering, and mine has been Pickle for about ten weeks now).
The baby shower was one part that I just couldn’t get on board with, but maybe that’s because it’s an idea that doesn’t appeal to me all that much. The people who’d come to a baby shower are the ones I tend to see every day at uni anyway, and if I’m going to go to a party with them I may as well just go to karaoke night at the student bar. They’re a bit ‘grabby’ too, if you ask me – it’s like saying yes, I procreated, now come and see me looking huge and manatee-like with a few more weeks until my cute exciting baby even makes an appearance, and bring me presents. I don’t think it’s an age thing, because most of the people my age who’ve had babies have organised their own baby showers. It’s just not for me.
The leaky boobs? Those I can totally empathise with. Bra pads are a revelation; as well as stopping any unfortunate stains on your shirt, they’re surprisingly comfy too! I’m not sure they’re as big a success as maternity jeans (I’m totally serious when I say I’m not sure I’ll ever go back to normal jeans now that I know the magic of stretchy maternity jeans) but I could definitely get used to them (and will probably have to over the coming months!).
It’s all glamour here.