Supermom, actor and wife of Dwyane Wade Gabrielle Union has a message for mom-shamers: “Screw you.”
Union and Wade welcomed their daughter, Kaavia James, via surrogate last November; and though they’ve never been happier, she says she’s never had to fight back against mom-shamers harder.
“I had to hit the mommy shamers day one,” Union told People. “I’m going to do it my way. I’m sure I’m going to make all kinds of mistakes, and when I ask for help, which I will, I would love to hear all y’all’s advice. Everybody has been on my journey of pain and anguish and trauma, and I owe it to myself to enjoy every second of my joy.”
She’s not exaggerating, either. Union’s road to parenthood has never been easy. In her best-selling memoir, We’re Going to Need More Wine, Union revealed that she experienced multiple miscarriages and struggled with infertility for much of her adult life. While at the #BlogHer 18 Creators Summit last year, she fought back against claims that her infertility was a direct result of her prioritizing her career over family. “The reality is I actually have adenomyosis,” Union said, according to People. “The gag is I had it in my early 20s.”
Since welcoming her daughter, Union has had to defend many of her parenting choices, including her decision to use a surrogate, the way she dresses herself, kissing her baby on the mouth and keeping unvaccinated people away from her child.
“I want to be able to make whatever choice I want to make and not have to answer to anybody but me,” Union told People. “As long as I feel good, as long as I feel confident, screw you. Look in the mirror and fix your own life. [I want to] give people that example of somebody who refuses to let anyone dictate what the hell I do or don’t do or say or don’t say.”
Hell yes, mama! There’s no reason anyone should shame moms for doing what they think is best for their child (so long as the kids aren’t in danger, of course). Each parent has a different style and journey, and we can never fully know everything that goes into their days. So often, we only see a tiny glimpse into other people’s lives — and that glimpse is even smaller when it comes to photos on social media. Thankfully, Union is fully aware that she’s doing what she thinks is right for her family and isn’t worried about anyone else.
“If you can’t just sit back and enjoy the miracles without offering every piece of advice Nana ever gave you, it’s okay to unfollow,” she said. “It’s okay to just enjoy the ride.”