Lauren Conrad Opens Up about Postpartum Difficulties: ‘I Lost Myself’

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The Hills alum, philanthropist and clothing line entrepreneur Lauren Conrad—who also happens to be a mom to two kids under age 4—opened up about the challenges she faced during the first year of motherhood. Perelel Lives, a podcast devoted to giving space to women leading vibrant lives beyond their careers, aired an interview with Conrad, in which she discusses “losing herself” in her new role as mom and how she found her way back with the help of her friends.

Conrad estimates that it took her about a year to feel like herself again. When asked if she always knew she wanted to be a mom, her response was familiar: She thought it would happen, she wasn’t in a rush, then one day—boom! She was ready. But she admitted that she wasn’t considering the lack of sleep and the time and energy that it would take to raise a tiny human. “I wasn’t prepared for having to pump in a bathroom stall,” she laughed, adding, “I had friends who told me just enough… but you don’t want to scare someone off from having kids!”

But, despite having to go through a very real change to her body both before and after giving birth, the physical aspect didn’t bother her as much, she explained. “It was more just like the emotional journey afterward that was really challenging,” Conrad said. Having her first child challenged her identity of herself, she continues, and it’s something we can all relate to. “Do I still wear that… I’m a mom now. Should I act a certain way…” You re-examine everything when you begin to see yourself through the lens of new motherhood.

But the tough transition didn’t deter her from wanting a second—and it helped her through a bit. “I wasn’t one of those people who like, loved the glow. … [So] even in the hard moments, [I took comfort in] knowing this is the last time I’m gonna do this. I’m not gonna do this again.”

Conrad says that she knows she’s lucky to have flexibility to balance time with her children with her work, and adds that “it’s all about choices… identifying what are the things that I have to do?” The allure of doing things for yourself under the guise of doing it for your kids (Pinterest, anyone?) can sidetrack you into trying to achieve a perfect motherhood that doesn’t really matter to your child. “One of the silver linings of this past year (during the pandemic)… is that I was in all these meetings and it was ok to have a baby in your lap.” Conrad added that it was easier to see that we’re all human because of it, which, in turn, took some of the pressure off.

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Taking time away from her kids for a few days also went a long way in her journey back to “normal,” she added. “It’s important to just be you for a minute and kind of reconnect with yourself,” she said. Additionally, spending time with her girlfriends really “fills her cup,” as does taking time to celebrate her mom wins. At the end of the day, “It’s important to do what’s right for you, and your family and your kids,” she said. “Parents need to support each other a little more.”

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