Oh, the lovely world of social media. A place where everyone has an opinion about you. What you wear, where you go, who your friends are. How you raise your kids, how many children you have, which school you send them to. The list is endless. And yes, while everyone is entitled to their opinion, that doesn’t mean they should be giving it every chance they get.
Especially when it comes to how many children you have. Unfortunately, you just can’t win when you’ve shared your life online.
Your opinion isn’t always necessary
That’s a fact. Just keep your crude comments to yourself. And like we said, how many children you have or don’t have is not something to shame someone about.
Sadly, this mom from Melbourne, Australia, was bullied because she was having another baby. Her fouth.
At the time, Fitness blogger Anna Strode was 33 years old and seven months pregnant. All three of her children were under the age of four. Her set of twins, Lachie and Samuel, were three years of age. Her daughter, Grace, was 18 months. This means that while her twins were just 15 months old, she fell pregnant with Grace. And while she was still breastfeeding, baby number four was conceived.
Sadly, after sharing the news of her fourth pregnancy, she was greeted by completely unnecessary opinions from people online.
How many children you have is nobodies business
At the time, Anna had 123,000 followers on her Instagram account. She often uploaded fitness videos for her fans. But, when she posted a picture of her new baby bump, the trolls stepped in and completely “pregnancy shamed” her.
People she didnt even know were commenting on how many children she had, telling her to stop having babies.
“I had absolutely no idea that ‘pregnancy shaming’ existed until, I announced we had baby #4 on the way.”
Anna says she was anxious about posting again because of the abuse and bullying she’d received online.
“You may have noticed I’ve been a little quite on Instagram the last 7 or so months.
“Why?! Because over the past 7 months I have been criticised, judged and blatantly questioned why we have chosen to have another baby.
“I’ve had comments and inbox messages saying all sorts of things from “wow, surely you’re not pregnant AGAIN ” to “STOP HAVING BABIES” to people asking if I don’t believe in contraception and making rude comments about our children being so close in age and that I won’t enjoy them.”
Anna admits it was not just the trolls, she was struggling with this pregnancy already.
“I really just hit rock bottom with it all. I was exhausted, had absolutely nothing to give and was struggling to keep up with raising 3 babes and growing a babe, let alone keeping up a presence on Instagram too.
This pregnancy has without a doubt been MUCH harder than I anticipated. Both physically and emotionally.”
Anna fought back, declaring exactly what she thought of these “trolls”
Anna decided to hit back. Telling the haters and trolls that she and her husband did plan for and their fourth baby, and yes, she did believe in contraception. But it still was not any of their business!
Her post gained 8,000 likes. She also asked if anyone else had been “pregnancy shamed” the way she had.
“We actually tried for a few months before successfully falling pregnant.
“And YES, I thoroughly enjoy my children even though they are close in age. I LOVE it in fact!
“I always wanted 4 children. For as long as I can remember, 4 just seemed like the number for me. I also all imagined them being close in age.
“And, I was blessed that my husband wanted the same. I never imagined that doing what my hubby and I wanted to do, would upset so many people or affect them in anyway.
“Anyone would think I asked the “pregnancy shamers” to wake all night and feed my baby, change dirty nappies, entertain my toddlers.”
how many children you have should not warrant an opinion from anyone, especially online.
Other moms replied to Anna’s post to tell her their similar stories.
One commenter said:
“This makes me sick. That anyone would be anything but happy for people to bring a baby in to a happy and safe, loving family. 
“Shame on all the haters. Congratulations.” 
Another mother agreed and said she’d been shamed for how many children she had too:
“Yep, I have 5 kids & pretty sure I’ve heard all those comments a million times.” 
More comments rolled in, agreeing that how many children you have is nobodies business!
“Congratulations and that is so effed up. People need to focus on their own lawn!!” 
“Ridiculous, just ignore the haters! You are obviously a good mommy and up for the challenge. Best wishes to you from another mum of four too!”
- “Mum bullied by cruel trolls for having three kids under three and fourth on way.” Mirror. Dave Burke. February 15, 2019.
- “BUMP IN THE ROAD I’ve got four kids under THREE – bullies blast me for having ‘too many babies close in age’ and ask if I ‘believe in contraception.” The Sun. Rebecca Flood. February 2019.