20 Aug 2022

Pregnant Carlow mother poses naked in bid to inspire other people to love their bodies

Jessica O'Neill, 26, is originally from Pollerton in Carlow

Carlow Carlow Carlow

Jessica O'Neill

A pregnant mother-of-two has posed nude in a bid to inspire others to love their bodies. 

Jessica O'Neill, 26, is originally from Pollerton in from Carlow and is mother to Max, two, and Robyn, one, and she and her partner, Matt, are expecting number three.

The body positive blogger - who has just bought her first house in Hanover - is not afraid to bare all and say "this is how I look without my clothes and I’m happy with that".

Speaking to Carlow Live, she explained: "I wanted to put it out there, that on the outside I look like I have a great figure.

"But strip it all back and what’s there? This is how I look without my clothes and I’m happy with that.

"People struggle with the fact that people can feel confident and okay in a bigger body."

In her blog - which is a parenting and family blog - Jessica opens up about loving her body. 

She said: "I am not ashamed of my cellulite, my thighs, my body hair, my stretch marks, the extra bit of fat I hold, my body, my personality, of myself.

"We spend a lot of time talking about specific parts of our bodies that we've been taught to see as flawed — stomachs that aren’t flat, thighs that aren’t smooth, arms that wobble and backs that ripple.

"We don't talk enough about what all those supposed 'flaws' have in common, and why we’ve been taught to see them as flaws in the first place.

"The problem isn’t individual body parts. The problem is fatphobia. We live in a culture that teaches us to fear and hate fatness.

"And she urged people to find peace with what they look like saying: Stop wishing you looked like someone else. Stop wishing people liked you as much as they like someone else.

"Stop trying to get attention from those who hurt you. Stop hating your body, your face, your personality, your quirks – Love them! Without those things you wouldn’t be you, and why would you want to be anyone else?"

She added: "I think you should be whatever you are, and you should be healthy. But this thing of having, somewhat magically, zero per cent body fat...I don’t want to spend my entire life working on that.

"That's a fulltime job and I already have one of those. If I’m starving myself, I don’t think right. I don’t like myself when I’m cranky and hungry."

She said: "Facing myself has been scary. When I posted my first body positive image, I was scared out of my mind.

"I couldn't believe I was doing it and showing myself so vulnerably. The response was overwhelming.

"I honestly struggle to keep up to replying to women every day, it's the reason I keep the content going.

"I wouldn't do it if I wasn't getting feedback because I wouldn't think I'm making an impact or helping anybody."

And that's why the Carlow woman decided to start writing a blog, after giving up her job in the finance industry when she had her second child.

She said: "I always wanted to help people feel good about themselves, to get their confidence back after having babies. Your body takes a toll and I just wanted to be good voice for mums out there."

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