The belly hold: why do we do it? – MULTIWEAR Back to the top

The belly hold: why do we do it?


the belly hold
Does anyone know why moms pose in photos with their hands like that? I just posed for pics like that too, so guilty as charged! 
Can you imagine, if you had no bump and you were holding your hands that way in a picture? There is something so motherly about it but without the bump, it's just odd don't you think? 
I was trying to figure out what it is that makes us do that. Do you think it's just cultural - we see others do that so we do it? Do you think it's a natural reflex to the baby moving in the belly?
Thought about it for several weeks and here are some idea
#1 - If you just pose with your hands at your side, it might look like you're not that excited about being pregnant because you're already pushing your stomach forward by the natural weight redistribution that the bump brings. Pushing your bump forward without embracing your bump sometimes looks like you're distancing yourself from your bump!
#2  - it helps to make out the shape of your belly by holding it that way.
#3 - it's universal language for 'I'm expecting' - when people see that, they know that the purpose of your photo is to document your pregnancy.
#4 - caressing your belly is a way to show intimacy for a child that you can't hold yet. 
#5 - it's a way to cut up your silhouette sort of how Beyonce does this to have the nicest lines for the camera.
Beyonce posing
#6 segue here: Check these pics out: 
This pic looks more like - ouch my back hurts!
Whereas this looks like:
Beyonce bump
yup, I'm definitely having a baby and happy about it!
#6 bringing me back to another possibility - it is a way to accentuate a bump that is not very visible otherwise.
#7 It's a rite of passage - the belly hold is not something you can do when you don't have a baby there, so embrace it!
Any other suggestions and what do you think? All of the above? Or do you wish people wouldn't do the belly hold?
As long as we don't have belly hold plus peace sign, I'm fine with it!  How about you?

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12 comments


  • Eliza Daniel

    I hate seeing pregnant women with their hands all over their bellies! It’s as though they are emphasizing the size of their belies. I wish we could return to the days when women tried to cover up their pregancies instead of wearing skin-tight clothing that clings to their silhouette.


  • Jonathan

    As a male I asked this question to myself and it brought me here. The reasons I found were mainly based on looks and how other perceive you, rather than how one feels about themself. Example is Beyonce pictures – not everyday will be perfect and that’s okay. Who cares if it looks like her back hurts, she’s having a baby. However, #4 was a great answer and I can respect that 100%.


  • Deb

    I found this blog after googling “why do pregnant women hold their bellies.” I was curious because all of the online photos of Megan Markle show her holding her belly. My kids are all in their 20’s now and I never had the urge to hold my belly during pregnancy, and never saw anyone else do it either until more recently. It’s interesting how things just change from one generation to the next.


  • Brenda

    It’s annoying. I do not like when women that have NO bump do it. I think it’s a pretentious ritual to show off.


  • Chris

    I think it’s annoying asf when people constantly hold and rub their bump in public it’s unnecessary


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Always A Parent is my blog about parenting, business, entrepreneurship, pregnancy, and motherhood. MULTIWEAR® is my product design business selling products for busy moms, nursing and breastfeeding moms as well as diaper bags and gym bags.

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