Jay Story WhatSheTaughtMe

This video is part of Shapermint’s #WhatSheTaughtMe Mother’s Month campaign, tributing mother figures’ wisdom. How did your own mom shape the self-image you have today? Share with #WhatSheTaughtMe on social media - we’ll be donating $1 to HelpAMotherOut.org for every story shared during May.

Not all mothers are created equally. Most keep you safe, lift you up and are there for us in our times of need. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Meet Jay, one of our favorite body-positive, plus-sized fashionistas on instagram. In her own words, “maybe I didn’t have an example of how to be body positive from my mom, but it is an example of what not to do.” Her story is one that a LOT of women can identify with - and one that is particularly painful to remember once Mother’s Day rolls around the corner.

However, as Jay’s strength reminds us, we can always turn things around. We have the power to write our own stories - and this is especially true if we decide to have kids of our own and try our very best to break the negative cycle. After all, the best way to spread good into the world is to bring up a future generation of empowered, confident women.

Find out how Jay is breaking the body-negative cycle in the video below. (No time for videos? Scroll down to find the entire transcript.)

Because Not All Superheroes Wear Capes

Some wear heels. Others wear makeup. And some even wear shapewear. Join the conversation and honor the mother figures in our lives that made us who we are now. Share your story with #WhatSheTaughtMe on social media - we’ll be donating $1 to Help a Mother Out® for every story shared.

Watch the #WhatSheTaughtMe campaign video below:

Video Transcript

My mom was like the most beautiful most glamorous woman in the whole world. She was a very jovial person, charming, fun at parties... but she was also really critical. She was critical about herself and she was also critical about me and that criticism was usually about what I look like.

I remember me being in my mom’s room and my mom being in the mirror and saying things like I’m ugly, or I wish I didn’t have this stomach or this cellulite. I was a chubby baby and I was like a little fat girl my whole life. My mom told me that nobody would love me looking the way that I looked, that no one wanted, like, who would want to be with or marry a fat girl.

When I was a girl I didn’t understand that it was wrong for my mom to say those things to me, and that it was a choice. I thought I deserved it, when I heard you know, “you’re fat”, or “you’re ugly” or “who’s going to love you looking like that?”, I thought I really deserved that.

Becoming a mom I realized that that was a choice, and it was a choice I couldn’t see myself making. And so I knew that I needed to do something different. For me, becoming a mom has been the most transformative experience of my life. I thought, like, I have spent years thinking about my body in these negative ways, wishing my body away in different ways, and then it had done this for me, like it has given me this baby that I now loved more than anything.

I’m just really trying to be the mom that I needed when I was her age.

I think that if you want to break the cycle of growing up body-insecure and you don’t want your daughters to grow up with that, you really have to think. And well, maybe I didn’t have an example of how to be body positive from my mom, but it is an example of what not to do.

The most important thing is that they have their own perspective, and that their perspective doesn’t have to be mine; they are not an extension of me they are their own people, each one of them is her own person.

About Help a Mother Out ®

Help A Mother Out® is a California-based organization that provides access to clean diapers for families in need. Clean diapers aren’t only hygienic and timer-savers - they’re basically a requirement for daycare facilities, which mothers need in order to work. Help a Mother Out® turns 10 years old this year - and May marks the month in which they’ll be delivering their 10 millionth diaper! We’ll be donating $1 for each story shared on social media with the hashtag #WhatSheTaughtMe*, as well as a percentage of our overall sales during May. Let’s band together to help us make this donation LEGENDARY ❤