When you think of motherhood, what type of woman do you picture? If you’re anything like most of our society, you picture a feminine presenting woman. Why is that? While being able to create life is seen as the most incredible thing women can do, not all women are seen as “mother material.” Masculine presenting women are often overlooked when it comes to motherhood because they aren’t seen as “real women.” We have society to thank for that. Queer YouTuber Ari Fitz, executive produced a short documentary that challenges what motherhood looks like in My Mama Wears Timbs.
The seven-minute documentary focuses on Frankie Smith, a pregnant masculine-of-center woman. As we watch her maternity photo shoot with her wife Tia, we see Smith rocking some tomboyish looks that capture her true self, society be damned. Pregnancies are almost always portrayed in a feminine way, just look at the celebrity maternity photo shoots from this past year. Sure, pregnancy is one of the most amazing things women’s bodies can do, but not every woman is feminine. Is it fair for masculine presenting women to feel like they must swap out their Timbs for heels once the baby bump is visible?
Smith recounts a time when she and her wife Tia were at the mall and a man who found them attractive, until he saw her baby bump. “He made this face like I just did the creepiest thing ever and he didn’t even try to hide it and after that I started to feel insecure… It just sucks that it has to be that way” said Smith. Fitz reveals to Smith that she made her realize pregnancy was an option for her. “I feel like you were the first person who showed me that I could do this. I just kinda felt like by being a masculine woman that I just wasn’t going to carry” said Fitz. Smith however, feels like her pregnancy was a natural calling. “I had no idea I was going to make that much of an impact, I was just doing what I always saw myself doing” said Smith.
“I just feel like as a woman this is what my body is for… I don’t want to feel like just because I dress a certain way that people are going to make me feel like I shouldn’t be a mother or be pregnant” Smith says. Often times being a queer woman can make us feel as though we have to behave a certain way or present ourselves in the dichotomous ways queer women are visible. Will I be feminine or masculine presenting? Will I cut my hair or let it flow? Will I carry my baby or will my partner? We don’t have to always choose one or the other. We can blur those lines not just for visibility but because that is the way we choose to live… fearlessly. How do you feel about masculinity and motherhood? Leave a comment.
Watch My Mama Wears Timbs below.