18-year-old Reanna Stephens is due to welcome her son in April, but her tiny baby bump has strangers accusing her of faking her pregnancy. Now, she’s hitting back at her critics by spilling her secret to staying slim at six months pregnant.
“My baby is growing the perfect amount every month as it’s measured, just like everyone else’s, so it’s absolutely nothing to do with mine or the baby’s health,” the South Carolina student, who practices a vegan diet and keeps up with a regular exercise routine, explained. “I have compared my bump over my pregnancy to people on different parent pages on Facebook, and it’s not as big as other people’s. But I love my small bump, it’s not big but I think it’s perfect in its own way and it’s my body and my bump, no one else’s.”
Throughout her journey to motherhood, Stephens says people have frequently made cruel and hurtful comments about her pregnant body, including some insisting she needs to eat more and see a doctor in case she’s starving her child.
“People really affect me with their comments, I try to stay calm as I know both me and my baby are healthy,” she said. “I have had people stopping me in the street and giving me nasty looks. It’s heartbreaking that instead of getting the ‘aw, look at your bump,’ I just get people being rude to me as soon as they realize how far gone I am.”
Stephens, however, claims her healthy vegan diet coupled with an active lifestyle — which includes yoga and cardio — has contributed to the small size of her baby bump. Additionally, she believes her minimal weight gain while pregnant could be genetic, as her mother was “in a similar situation when she was pregnant.”
“She was an athlete and she didn’t show until she was seven months pregnant,” she said. “Although I’m much smaller than her, I believe being active has a part to play in the size of your bump.”