Mother and Baby

Meet the Mama: Stacey Solomon - her kids, partner Joe Swash and mum-guilt

Section: Celebrity Mums
Stacey Solomon

Presenter and singer Stacey Solomon is one of our favourite celeb mums to follow on Instagram right now with her Tap to Tidy's, morning montages, fun foody makes and of course regular healthy doses of reality. But who exactly is the Essex-born mum? 

Who is Stacey Solomon?

Stacey Solomon is a singer and TV presenter who first appeared in the public eye in 2009 when she appeared on the sixth series of The X-Factor where she finished in third place. Stacey then went on to win the tenth series of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! 

Stacey Solomon's kids

Stacey currently has three children. When she was 17, Stacey became pregnant by her boyfriend, Dean Cox. Unfortunately, the couple split up before the birth of their son, Zachary, on 21st March 2008. Stacey then gave birth to her second son Leighton with then-fiancé Aaron Barnham on 5th May 2012. On 23rd May 2019, Stacey gave birth to her third child with Joe Swash, Rex, at 37 weeks.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

🌿You Have My Heart 🌿 Rex’s face is cracking me up πŸ˜­πŸ˜‚ My dad met us in the park today and took this picture of us and I can’t stop smiling at it... Joe‘s off on an adventure with his biggest pickle late tonight so we had all the cuddles today because we will miss them both soooooo much. It’s always hard to be without them but we know how special it will be and how important it is for them... We love you to the moon and back boys have the best holiday EVER. And when you get back be prepared for the amount of Fejkas I may have collected... Don’t worry I’ll make it up to you in animal snacks πŸ˜‚πŸ€πŸŒΏ

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Stacey Solomon and Joe Swash

Stacey has been with her partner actor and presenter Joe Swash since 2016 although the couple have been friends since 2010. They share a son together, Rex who was born in 2019, joining their family which comprises of Stacey's two sons from previous relationships and Joe's son. 

Stacey Solomon on her first week as a new mum

Stacey bravely opened up about her first week as a mum to Rex and admitted the 'fog has lifted after uncontrollable sobs'. In the honest Instagram post, Stacey is pictured holding her newborn son, who arrived 'a lot earlier' than planned, admits life hasn't been 'rosy and glossy’. The 29-year-old penned, "Today is a smiley day, it’s been an interesting week. But it feels like the fog is lifting and I’m coming out of the fuzz. I’m so grateful to have our baby boy with us and be surrounded by my incredible family – my biggest privilege." 

Fans praised her for speaking honestly out about her struggle to breastfeed, as she said "Hormone surges + really struggling to breastfeed + no sleep what so ever + engorged boobs + cracked nipples + absolutely anything as minuscule as somebody kissing my babies head = total meltdown."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Today is a smiley day 😬 it’s been an interesting week. But it feels like the fog is lifting and I’m coming out of the fuzz. I’m so grateful to have our baby boy with us and be surrounded by my incredible family - my biggest privilege. But it doesn’t mean it’s been all rosey and glossy. Hormone surges + really struggling to breastfeed + no sleep what so ever + engorged boobs + cracked nipples + absolutely anything as minuscule as somebody kissing my babies head = total meltdown. I’ve found myself spontaneously uncontrollably sobbing into my mums arms, at least twice every day. Then I feel guilty that I’m not “enjoying every second” like everyone tells you too because it passes by so quickly (and it does, my eldest is 11 and I feel like I just blinked and that happened). But sometimes I’m just not in control of my emotions, and I can’t feel guilty about having sad points it’s counter productive. I’m really feeling happy today which is amazing, but I’m ready to accept any sobbing or sadness that sneaks up on me at any point. If it doesn’t hallelujah, but if it does I’m no less of a mother for feeling that way. And to anyone else feeling or who has felt that way, don’t ever let those feelings make you feel that you weren’t good enough, you were and you are. Its ok not to be ok. Also I want to say thank you to the amazing NHS services that we have received over the last 7 days... Queens Hospital Romford, all of the nurses, midwives and paediatricians. Our community midwives, and the breastfeeding specialist who literally MILKED me for hours trying to bring my milk down from under my chest and armpits, and the Perinatal Parent Infant Mental Health Services in our area who have been so attentive and always there if we need them. πŸ’™ Thinking of all of those who don’t have a support system around them. If you need someone to talk to there are people out there... please don’t hesitate to reach out. @pandas_uk @mindcharity πŸ’™

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Stacey also opened up about her experience with mum guilt how she feels upset that she wasn't 'enjoying every second' with her newborn. 

The Loose Woman panellist said, "I’m really feeling happy today which is amazing, but I’m ready to accept any sobbing or sadness that sneaks up on me at any point. If it doesn’t hallelujah, but if it does I’m no less of a mother for feeling that way. And to anyone else feeling or who has felt that way, don’t ever let those feelings make you feel that you weren’t good enough, you were and you are. It’s ok not to be ok."

Preach it, Stace!

The presenter then reminded her 1.7m fans that there is lots of help out there for mums who are struggling. "Our community midwives, and the breastfeeding specialist who literally MILKED me for hours trying to bring my milk down from under my chest and armpits, and the Perinatal Parent Infant Mental Health Services in our area who have been so attentive and always there if we need them."

"Thinking of all of those who don’t have a support system around them. If you need someone to talk to there are people out there… please don’t hesitate to reach out."

If you need to talk to someone, check out our guide to PND, which includes all the symptoms to look out for, plus the helplines you need. 

Stacey Solomon opens up about the 'painful' reality of post-birth

Stacey opened up about her heartbreak at her diminishing baby bump as she shuts down questions about her ‘post-baby body’ "I’ve lost it today,” she wrote on Instagram, alongside an intimate snap of Joe kissing her deflating tummy.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I’ve lost it today. I really miss my bump and baby being inside me. I don’t feel I appreciated it enough while I was pregnant and now it’s over. Joe and I didn’t have one picture of him with my bump. The thought of not having that memory has been really getting me down so today, Joe and my Dad helped me get a picture of what’s left of my bump to cheer me up. I love them so much. It’s not the same but it still means the world to me. For the record, for all of the people who asked me how excited I was to get my pre baby body back? Was I hoping to “snap back”? Am I going to train? Etc etc. I hate these questions. They’re pointless. And not important or relevant. No one knows how they’re going to feel and what we look like after birth is the very least of our worries. The truth is I’m devastated that my belly is shrinking by the day. I wish it could stay around for a little longer. I feel empty and hollow. Not to mention like I’ve been punched in the vagina. πŸ’™

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She went on to slam assumptions that new mums should be desperate to get their pre-pregnancy bodies back, writing, "The truth is I’m devastated that my belly is shrinking by the day. I wish it could stay around for a little longer. I feel empty and hollow. Not to mention like I’ve been punched in the vagina."

Of questions about her fitness regime now that the baby had arrived, she said, "I hate these questions. They’re pointless. And not important or relevant. No one knows how they’re going to feel and what we look like after birth is the very least of our worries. "I really miss my bump and baby being inside me. I don’t feel I appreciated it enough while I was pregnant and now it’s over."

Quickfire questions with Stacey Solomon

Hair up or hair down? 
Hair up.

Heels or trainers? 
Trainers.

Instagram or Twitter?
Instagram.

Starter or dessert?
Starter.

Tea or coffee? 
Tea!

Marmite or peanut butter?
Mamite! I didn't even have to hear the second one!

Stacey Solomon reveals genius £8.99 sandwich hack 

Stacey Solomon has become something of a guru when it comes to nifty tricks, organisation and cleaning. Labeled jars for pasta? We've done it. Organising our entire home with handy storage solutions? What spring-cleaning weekends thrive upon. So, of course, we were all ears when she shared her tip that is a LIFE-SAVER for anyone currently home-schooling children.

Stacey showed her  followers how she meal preps her son's sandwiches.

Stacey solomon sandwich

The cutters only cost £8.99 for a seven-piece set from Amazon and they will bring some much-needed joy to lunchtimes at home.

A shark-shaped sandwich? A dolphin? Perfect for developing a little one's imagination.

Stacey also revealed how she meal preps the boy's sandwiches for the week to save her time.

Stacey sandwich cutter

“I’m going to make sandwiches for the boys for the week and freeze them so I don’t have to worry on the day which makes a massive difference," she told her Instagram following. “I’ll put them in freezer bags, labeled and take them out the night before I use them.”

For anyone who's really into nailing the whole sandwich thing, the Loose Women panelist insists you should pick up two slices of bread instead of one, to ensure they match perfectly. Stacey said that it bothered her whenever she took out one slice at a time to make a sandwich because when it came time to put them together they didn't line up. "Just thought I'd share this absolute golden nugget of information with you," she wrote in the caption.

Stacey Solomon chats to Mother&Baby

We caught up with Stacey for a good chinwag...

Pregnancy was a mixed bag for me

I don’t enjoy being pregnant, but I don’t not enjoy it. It’s so different all the way through, there are moments where, especially at the beginning, you feel flat out exhausted and can't do anything and then you get a pick me up and you think, ‘wow this is the best I’ve ever felt!’ and then you go back to the beginning where it feels like you’ve been pregnant forever! So a mix of emotions. I don’t think it’s ever one feeling.

Coming home from the hospital was a really surreal experience 

I remember being really scared to put my youngest son Rex in the car seat because he was so small, he just didn’t feel like he fitted in the car seat. I remember sitting in the back and just staring at him the whole time. We got indoors and everyone was there, my in-laws, my sister, the kids, everyone and it was quite overwhelming. I think in hindsight, I would probably if I have any more children, come home to just the kids and not be like ‘Yeah, everyone come over!’ Straight after I’ve given birth!

No baby is the same

All three of my children have been entirely different. None of them have been the same in terms of birth, or routine or sleeping or personality. I’ve got quite big gaps between my children and when it came to Rex, I’d forgotten everything, it had all gone out the window.  But then I have friends with 18 months between their children and they’re exactly the same and forget what to do. I think you get through that fuzzy, hazy patch of the newborn phase and you just kind of forget about it.

I love seeing my boys together

It’s been so lovely to watch my older sons fall in love with Rex, right from the very beginning. Not a day goes by where I don’t cry watching them together. It’s always an adjustment but we’re so lucky and privileged, they’re really good boys and they adore each other. I think the age gap helps in our circumstances as they’re not in competition with one another, their interests are different, and I can spend individual time with them doing different things. But at the same time, they love coming together and being a big family with everyone under the same roof.

The little things matter most

I feel a real sense of pride in the people that my children have become. Even little things, like if I hear from someone that they’ve been polite or kind to someone else, they’re the moments where I feel like I’m doing something right. In parenthood in general, you’re constantly trying to do the best and you’re questioning yourself all the time, it’s never-ending so when they leave the house and go somewhere where they represent themselves and you hear that they’ve been good people.

I remember Zachary’s teacher ringing me up after they’d visited an old people's home and she rang me up and she told me he was so polite and he danced with the old ladies and he was really making them laugh. It’s the little things like that where you think, I could moan and moan at them all day for not putting their dishes in the dishwasher or picking up their clothes and questioning myself all day long and then you get a call like that and you think, everything is going to be all right. And those are the moments I treasure, and I really hold onto. Motherhood is tireless and endless and it’s those moments where you think, this is what it’s all for, this is what it’s all about.

I’ll always feel guilty

Mum-guilt is a massive challenge for me. Genuinely not a day goes by where I don’t think: “Have I done too much of that today? Have I not done enough of that today?” Sometimes I’ll be sorting out bits around the house and I’ll think ‘Oohh, maybe I should be sitting there playing with all the kids, what a terrible mother!’ and then I think, but then I won’t be able to do the things they want to later on in the week because I’ve got other stuff! You’re constantly questioning yourself and feeling bad about the choices you make when ultimately, everything you’re doing, all boils down to your children. It’s all for them.

I can rationalise but it doesn’t stop the thought for entering my mind. I’ve come to realise it’s clearly a natural part of my existence and I’m going to question myself and those thoughts are going to come into my head, the best thing I can do is feel them, hear them, brush them aside and move forwards. Accept that they are there and flip them on their head instead of saying ‘go away, why are you doing this’? Because then you’re just beating yourself up even more.

We need more diversity  

Everyone wants to be represented, I only represent one type of person. There are other types of people out there. It’s about diversity and being able to see lots of different ways of life and opinions. I think for a long time we’ve been told that one body is the ideal and I think that’s had a really long-term effect on people. A long time ago, I used to think, ‘Oh god, I’m so gangly and weird looking, I’ll just have to be funny!’ But after I had Zac and I had a couple of years to come to terms with my body and how it changed, I felt proud of what it had achieved. I’m just content and I think I’m really lucky to have a body well enough to have babies and run around after my children. I feel really grateful.

I think the same for men too. I look at my boys who have been raised on action men who have 12-pacs and muscles and I think you show these things to kids from when they’re four, it’s going to have damaging effects and it does give them a warped vision of what they should look like if they want to be strong or a hero and I think that’s been happening for too long. By showing people beauty in all different forms, not just this one ideal.

There’s no place for judgement in motherhood

Everything about motherhood in my opinion is a challenge. I genuinely think that most people out there say things from a good place but sometimes it doesn’t feel that way and you can feel judged. I think that’s a massive challenge. There are so many people with so many different opinions and that can sometimes take you off the path that your gut thinks you should be going down which is really difficult being able to stand your ground and say, ‘well actually, this is how I’m doing it.’  Most people get that whether it’s from a friend or family.

I really do think there’s a place for women to come together, especially when they’ve just become a mum, to support each other. No matter how they want to do motherhood or how they decide to raise their child. There are plenty of people ready to tell you how to do things and how to do them better but not enough people saying, ‘let’s get behind each other.’

I do feel lots of people feel like they get a lot about judgment about parenting in general. I definitely get my fair share of it for sure but I don’t think people think they’re being horrible and they’re just trying to let you know. But it can be really damaging for somebody when they’re really tired, looking after a baby, trying to raise other children or get away from guilt, only to then be told, ‘well actually, that’s not how you should be doing it, you should be doing it like this.’ And you think, I don’t wanna do it like that! This is what works for us and this is how it’s going to stay because this is all I can do at this point! Sometimes it can be really lonely being a parent, even when you’re surrounded my children. Because it’s thankless isn’t it? It’s not like your six-month-old can turn around and go ‘Cheers!’ You get nothing!

Read next on Mother&Baby:

 
  • Author: Emily Thorpe Emily Thorpe
  • Job Title: Digital Writer

Having worked for Mother&Baby magazine for four years where she wrote news and product pages, features and  interviewed celebrities such as Paloma Faith, Fearne Cotton and Alex Jones, Emily now works as Digital Writer for Mother&Baby online.

A fondness for travel, chocolate and her sausage dog Luna, in her spare time. Emily also runs the lifestyle blog, Musings & More.

 

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