Olivia Munn is getting real about pregnancy, measuring up as a mother and how her body has changed since becoming pregnant with her first child with her boyfriend, John Mulaney. In a new interview with SiriusXM’s “Pop Culture Spotlight with Jessica Shaw” the “Violet” actress and her co-star, Justine Bateman, spoke about the pressure she and other moms are facing in trying to be a “good enough mother.”
“That’s what I hear about a lot. Friends being like, ‘I’m not a good enough mother.’ It’s already hard enough to feel like you are not good enough and that you can’t forgive yourself for things, and the world doesn’t let you forgive yourself for things,” Munn said in response to Bateman sharing her own worries about motherhood. “And no matter how much you grow, progress or change that, even if the world wants to beat you down, it’s actually easier because you’re like. ‘I still been beating myself down for this thing I did 15 years ago, 20 years ago.’ You know those moments, I have those ones when I am driving down. I’ll remember like a dynamic with a friend, or a situation I didn’t know how to handle. And I’ll just cringe thinking like, ‘Ugh,’ you know, that voice comes in that’s like, ‘Oh my gosh.’ Even though it could be decades that have gone by.”
Those same feelings arise when Munn says she sees other mothers on Instagram looking effortless in maternity wear that she’s found hard to find and hard to fit into.
“I had a friend of mine, god love her, and she always has the best sense of style, and so when she heard I was pregnant, she reached out and I said, ‘I’ve been wanting to talk to you specifically because you have such great style, like I need help with this. It’s just so hard because I will google search street wear maternity, and a lot of it comes up with these gorgeous women who are super skinny, and have this little bump, and everything is effortless. They are wearing the same clothes, just looks a little different and I don’t feel the same way, do you have any advice?’ And she literally said, ‘You should reach out to Rosie Huntington-Whiteley ’cause she is pregnant too.’ As if that’s what I need,” Munn said.
“Rosie is great and I love Rosie, but that’s what I mean, I don’t have Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s body at all, and that was the first step in feeling like, ‘Oh, if I am not handling maternity well, if I’m not looking chic and cool and effortless, and if my body is changing like this, that means that I’m failing. That means that I’m already not doing things right,'” she continued.
Munn isn’t new to dealing with or talking about her body image. The 41-year-old actress says she was told she was “too big” to be on TV, a message that caused her to under-eat and seek out professional help in an effort to lose weight.
“That’s what I first dealt with when I first got into the public eye. I was called so many things, that I was too big to be on TV. Then I would start to under-eat, ’cause I would hear those messages and I would try to take that message myself and be like, ‘Fine you think I’m…sure call me fat, I’m fat, sure, whatever.’ I would just let people. I would try to take those things people were calling me, and try to own them myself. I was like, ‘Fine, you are calling me this, fine,’ and ‘Ha, ha, ha,’ but it wasn’t ‘Ha, ha, ha.’ I would do that on the surface, but behind the scenes, I was talking to doctors, ‘What can I do to lose weight?’ Asking friends what are their tips and tricks. Asking people, doing anything I can.”
But that cycle only started something even more vicious that has resurfaced as the pressure to have the perfect pregnancy mounts on the TV and film star.
“Then starting that cycle of eating too much, overeating, under-eating and then before you know it, it’s like, ‘Oh she is too skinny.’ Then it was like, ‘She is too Asian looking’ and ‘When you are Asian you look like this’ and then, ‘Oh she is too white looking.’ It was just this constant, and just being pregnant has brought up all those feelings, because there is so much of a, ‘How am I supposed to do it right?'”
While she acknowledges that there’s no right way to be pregnant or to be a mom, Munn admits that it hasn’t been easy.
“And I know there is no right, I understand that, but it’s really hard, especially to have so many images in your face all the time of what truly looks like perfection.”
On Monday, Munn spoke to ET’s Matt Cohen about what she’s most looking forward to about becoming a mom.
“Honestly, I’m just excited about meeting whoever it is, and bringing a little person into this world,” she said.
Over the weekend, Munn and Mulaney’s names were trending on social media after rumours that the two split. However, ET learned that the reports were not true.
In September, Mulaney revealed that he and “The Gateway” actress are expecting a baby together during a chat with longtime friend Seth Meyers on “Late Night”. The comedian opened up about his challenging past year — which included a drug relapse, rehabilitation, and a divorce from Anna Marie Tendler — sharing how Munn “held my hand through that hell.”
“And we are having a baby, together,” Mulaney said with a smile. “I’m gonna be a dad! I’m really — we’re both really, really happy.”
See more on the couple below.