Deepika Padukone or Katrina Kaif's Pregnancy Is Actually None of Our Business

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

Hot Take
6 min read
Hindi Female

For some reason, we love to insert ourselves into a celebrity’s personal lives, especially when it comes to celebrity pregnancies. Every Instagram “confirmation” is followed by scores of headlines and it consumes almost every discussion about them. At some level, it’s easy to understand – fans are happy for their favourite celebrities. But, more often than not, the discussion doesn’t end there.

There is a positive to celebrities talking about their pregnancy journeys – it has increased conversations around topics like IVF, loss of pregnancy, and infertility.

That being said, pregnancy can look different for everyone and it’s also unrealistic to expect celebrities to share every moment of their pregnancy journey, simply because it is a deeply personal experience. Think back to when Alia Bhatt announced her pregnancy. Instead of congratulating the couple, people instantly turned to the internet's favourite weapon: misogyny.

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

The "isn't it too soon" brigade showed up and people started to ask intrusive questions about her and Ranbir Kapoor's marriage. Once again, nobody stopped to ask themselves why this is any of our business.

This makes the recent speculations surrounding Deepika Padukone and Katrina Kaif even more frustrating.


Deepika Padukone Is Being Trolled…For Nothing Really

Deepika Padukone and her husband, actor Ranveer Singh had announced their pregnancy in February. Ever since then, a pattern has become obvious. Till the celebrities welcome their baby, the female actor will continue to be called “mother-to-be”, “mom-to-be”, language you will rarely see being used for the fathers.

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

This focus on an actor’s pregnancy becomes even clearer when a ‘baby bump’ becomes the main focus of coverage. Considering our world runs on supply and demand, it's obvious that coverage has been this way for years because it ‘works’.

Recently, however, Deepika Padukone faced trolling that is not only weirdly intrusive but also highlights that a lot of people don't really understand how pregnancy (or the human body) works.


While Deepika Padukone was out in Mumbai to vote for the Lok Sabha elections, she was naturally photographed by paparazzi. Since then, people have started to have all sorts of opinions about her pregnancy, with many floating speculations about her pregnancy because she doesn't look like what they believe a pregnant woman should look like.

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

The first thing to consider is why someone fulfilling their democratic right (and responsibility) has become about their pregnancy. Further, ironically, there's people on both side of the nonsensical debate – either she's ‘faking’ a pregnancy or the baby bump is ‘too big’.

It's already so messed up that we, as a society, believe we have the right to body shame people. Add to that the fact that a disturbing number of people seem to think all pregnancies look the same. Viewing all pregnancies as a monolith is ignorant to say the least.


If we looked away from our screens and actually talked to human beings and tried to educate ourselves, these discussions wouldn't even need to happen. This, of course, is a nicer way of saying, touch some grass.

If and when a baby bump is visible or what it looks like depends on several different factors. What it doesn't depend on is what strangers on the internet think about it.

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

Not only are people coming up with conspiracy theories about Padukone’s pregnancy, the self-righteous trolling that started after her appearance on Koffee With Karan with Singh continues.

People still don't understand that what two consenting adults do in their relationship with a mutual understanding is not something we need to concern ourselves with. "Oh but they put that information out there, they should be ready for criticism!" You might say but I would invite you to introspect.

Why is criticism your first response to someone sharing something harmless about their lives?

Where Does Katrina Kaif Come In?

Katrina Kaif is a part of this discussion because we seemingly can't stop commenting on people's bodies. After Kaif and her husband, actor Vicky Kaushal, were spotted in London, people started wondering if the actor is pregnant because of the way ‘she’s walking’.

We don't talk enough about this need to make pregnancies such a big part of public discourse when the people themselves aren't ready to announce it (if the rumours are at all true).


The Basic Need for Boundaries

This plays into a sense of entitlement that people feel into celebrities’ lives. A lot of times when people point out that celebrities’ privacy should be respected, you'll hear others make the argument that they ‘chose this life'.

But if ‘choice’ is the defining word here – does making the choice to be in the public eye take away the choice to share things when and how they want to, especially when it comes to something that's deeply personal? Consider this: Several celebrities, including Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli, have expressed their desire to keep their children away from the public eye.

And yet, they need to come and reiterate it over and over again because won't stop sneakily clicking and sharing the kids' pictures.

Even post-pregnancy a lot of female actors have to deal with body-shaming and trolling.

Actor Halle Bailey, for instance, decided to keep her pregnancy away from the public eye. During a Q&A, she'd shared, I just wanted to make sure I had a beautiful, private healthy time in my journey.”


That hadn't, however, stopped people from making comments about her appearance as ‘armchair physicians’. Pointing out that someone ‘might be’ pregnant and using a confirmation as a gotcha moment isn't a win, it's intrusive and unnecessary.

Pregnancy or Post-Pregnancy: There's No Winning

This trolling continues post-pregnancy too. It is no surprise that a person's body goes through changes when they're pregnant. Several actors have spoken up about the body shaming they faced after their pregnancy.

Aishwarya Rai is one of the most iconic Bollywood actors out there, especially considering her Miss World win in 1994. After she gave birth to her daughter, the trolls weren't far behind. She had to deal with constant trolling around her weight and her body changing (as is natural, as we've discussed).

“It’s not just been post motherhood. Contextually, post motherhood, you are referring to specifically body shaming. Because you are looking at it from that aspect of the body frame changing. I am talking about the reason I was able to handle it because I have faced judgement in my life for so long.”
Aishwarya Rai to Rajeev Masand

Neha Dhupia had once shared a news headline that read, “Neha Dhupia Shocking Weight Gain Post Pregnancy” with a response,

“As a new mom I want to be fit, healthy and energetic for my daughter. So I work out everyday, sometimes twice a day because for me...’Fitness’ is a priority and not ‘fitting into’ society’s standards regarding looks.”
Neha Dhupia, Actor

Society considers a certain body type to be “fit” when it really isn't that simple. Fitness can come in many shapes and sizes and all we can do as people is to look at our fellow humans with empathy. Even if you believe yourself to be a self-appointed good Samaritan, out to tell people they aren't “fit,” stop.

Actor Kareena Kapoor had also talked about the body shaming she faced after she gave birth to Taimur,

"I have carried Taimur with lot of strength, energy, joy. I put on 18 kilos and I flaunted it till the day I walked in the hospital I did not care. And I was photographed from different angles, my double chin was seen.”
Kareena Kapoor Khan, Actor

Whether someone is pregnant or not, how far along their pregnancy is, if they're using IVF or adopting….maybe wait till people are ready to share the news. A public figure is allowed to have a private life that doesn't harm anyone.


Of course, I see the irony of writing thousands of words about a discussion I wish wasn't even happening. All this, to simply say:

the Venn diagram between someone else's business and your business shouldn't have any intersection unless they specifically ask.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Read Latest News and Breaking News at The Quint, browse for more from neon and hot-take

Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Member
3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Member Benefits
Read More