Stephanie Beatriz, who voices the character of Mirabel in Disney’s Encanto, spoke some truth about body imagery, motherhood and the ever-evolving relationship moms have with themselves. On the Oscar’s red carpet, she told a TODAY correspondent that while the experience performing and presenting at the ceremony had been “…pretty dope” she still missed her daughter. “It’s been quite a few hours away from her and it’s hard.” (Moms of multiple kids: curb your sarcasm. Beatriz welcomed daughter Rosaline in August and her role at the Oscars was some serious werk.)

Beatriz also opened up about how having a daughter has helped her work out her own relationship with her body. “Because I think a lot of women struggle with body dysmorphia, eating disorders, disordered eating. And I think weirdly having a kid made me go, ‘Oh, what do I want this person to know about their body?’ So it made me really appreciate my own body, myself, much more.” And remember, Beatriz said this on the red carpet. She’d probably spent hours being prodded, poked, smeared, and squeezed to get ready for the evening—so for her to have this perspective is worth its weight in (Oscar) gold.

It’s also a perspective that many women wish their own mothers had had during their adolescence. Who here remembers the cabbage-soup diet, or the dehydrated/ rehydrated mail order meals, or the store-bought shakes (that were probably loaded with sugar) blended with ice and wishing you could have that for dinner (except for maybe the cabbage soup). But a report by Common Sense Media suggests that 5-8 year olds who think their moms are unhappy with their bodies are more likely to feel dissatisfied with their own.


Mothers play a “huge role” when it comes to affecting their daughters’ body image, a much larger role than most moms realize, said Laura Choate, a professor of counselor education at Louisiana State University and author of “Swimming Upstream: Parenting Girls for Resilience in a Toxic Culture.” And while Beatriz may be early in the mom game, she’s figured out one important rule of thumb: in order for her daughter to feel positively about herself, she’s going to look to her mama for guidance. “We have to learn that to be able to model it,” Beatriz says. “So I’m on the journey of learning that.”

And she’s doing it with the earnestness of Mirabel in Encanto, too—but Beatriz has already discovered one important gift. “Truly the gift (Rosaline) gave me was loving myself a lot more because I want her to love herself. I don’t want her to get caught up in all the other b.s. like so many of us are,” she said. “I want her to feel like she is above it or at least feel like it doesn’t matter what people say because I know my own worth.”


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