To honor the many sacrifices moms make, most men would opt for flowers orchocolates. But three male coworkers who really want to understand the momexperience are taking their celebration of motherhood a (giant) step further —by wearing 33-pound pregnancy suits, complete with breasts and a fake9-months-along belly.
Biggins and his colleagues Steven Hanson and Jason Bramley each committedto wearing the “empathy belly” for one month, leading up to U.K. Mother s Day onMarch 15. They wear the suit all day and night, only taking it off to bathe, andeach of the men is documenting his experience being nine months pregnant withposts and videos on their blog, Three Pregnant Dads.
“We re trying to empathize a little and go through some of the physicaldiscomforts women go through, though not all of them,” Biggins says, pointingout that the three men are spared plenty of the biological pregnancy trials likeswollen ankles or tender breasts. Still, the suit is intended to put pressure onthe bladder, stomach and lungs and cause the wearer to feel bloated, a commonpregnancy complaint.
Nine days into the project, Biggins, a 45-year-old father of two, says hehas a whole new appreciation for what pregnant women go through.
“I ve had to slow down. Little things like picking something up or tyingyour shoesbecomes a huge task,” he says. Nights, too, have been rough. “It slike sleeping on aboulder, it s really uncomfortable. But you start adapting andcustomizing to make it work.” Biggins says he s added a second seat to hisbicycle to rest support his belly, and has to wear a maternity band to minimizechafing.
Bramley, a 44-year-old dad of one, blogged about how hard it is to simplyget around with his new belly. “I wonder why pregnant women don t usewheelchairs,” he wrote. “I have a chair in the office with wheels, this is ablessing.
Hanso, a 45-year-old dad of one, noted that while his newfound breastsseemed exciting at first, that moment passed quickly. “What an awful night, Ijust couldn t get settled,” he wrote. “What were at first quite a pleasurablenovelty, my boobs soon became about as welcome as a fart in a spacesuit.”
“At the end of the day, women are superhuman,” Biggins says.