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Where Is The Accountability For Disregarding An Expecting Mother’s Mental Health?

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Pregnant Dia Mirza trolled, have we thought this through? The Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein actor married businessman Vaibhav Rekhi in February this year, announcing her pregnancy with a baby bump only some weeks after. And as it happens when a woman exercises agency over her own life choices, Mirza’s pregnancy seems to have disrupted the equilibrium of morality that online trolls so live by, prompting them to come at her with below-the-belt memes.

The running ‘joke’ underscoring discussion about her pregnancy all over the internet seems to be along the lines of ‘oh, so that’s why she married him.’ Or ‘did she trick him into marrying her?’ And the good old ‘couldn’t they have waited till marriage to have sex?’

What is the effect of such baseless, and needless to say, horrible commentary on an expecting mother‘s well-being? How much of a stressor is it, especially when she is in a state that is sensitive and in an experience that is wholly new for her? The time of pregnancy, for several families, is made up of treasured moments that stay with them for years, perhaps lifelong. Wouldn’t trolling, in matters so personal, posit a risk of tarnishing those memories?

Trolling pregnant Dia Mirza: Where Do We Draw The Line On Memes?

Mirza is being compared to other parents who got pregnant before or soon after marriage, most prominently in recent times Hardik Pandya. There was similar talk last year when the cricketer and his partner Nataša Stanković became parents to a son soon after engagement. Their supposed ‘speed’ of pregnancy has provided trolls endless meme material, which is hitting at the basest of base levels to invoke laughter from other social media users.

No one’s to say whether Mirza is imparting any importance to trolls questioning her or her pregnancy. But it points to a larger question of misogyny that is preventing patriarchal norms from loosening their grip over women. The jokes trolls are making on Mirza’s pregnancy may constitute an insignificant part of their day. Make a meme, have a laugh, pass it on and get on with your day.

Pregnant Dia Mirza trolled: This points to bigger questions on patriarchy’s hold over society

But what does that negativity do to the entire journey of a woman’s pregnancy? Will she have a laugh over said memes too or do they have the potential of wrecking her mental health at a time when it may possibly already be vulnerable? Could it possibly even lead her to question herself over a decision she was confident about before?

Pregnancy can be a beautiful, powerful experience but simultaneously weighs heavy, not just on the mother’s body, but her entire being, from mood to hormones to emotions to mental health. In her already delicate state, does any woman (or anyone ever) deserve the added burden of having to deal with trolls and their commentary?

Views expressed are the author’s own. 


Image Credit: Dia Mirza/ Instagram

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Where Is The Accountability For Disregarding An Expecting Mother’s Mental Health?
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