With more than 1.5 million followers on Instagram, Hannah Polites is well aware that her fitness and bikini photos have gained her lots of attention.
However, 26-year old model and midwife says that since becoming a mother to daughter Evaliah in 2016, she’s lost many of her male followers — and has become a constant target for internet trolls.
“’I definitely have lost a lot of male followers and people that maybe aren’t interested in babies but I’ve gained a lot of mummy followers since my page has changed a lot,” reveals Polites in an interview with the Gold Coast Bulletin. “’Evaliah is a part of me, but I try not to share too many pictures of her because that’s not why people followed me in the first place. I think my followers have grown with me: the girls who were 20 are now 26 and they want to see more about babies and marriage.”
While pregnancy and motherhood may have sent some men in search of a new, childless, Instagram beauty to follow (boy, bye!), Polites has been trying to cope with the onslaught of parenting criticism from keyboard warriors.
A majority of the trolling chastises the fitness model for seemingly not spending enough time with her child.
“I think if Evaliah isn’t in the photo they just assume I’m not with her,” Polites said.
As if motherhood isn’t already hard enough, three weeks after giving birth, Polites also was slammed for the way she held her newborn.
Polites was quick to reply to her critics, writing, “Calm down people, I know how to hold my baby safely and have barely left her side for more than a couple of minutes since she was born. You can bond with your child without needing to lose your identity.”
Luckily for Polites, she has a strong fan base that helps keep the trolls in check. One supporter came to the new mom’s defense saying, “’Good on @hannahpolites for looking so fricking amazing 2 weeks after giving birth while she just probably stopped for two seconds from rushing around to take a photo! Because I know if I looked that good then I’d be doing it too! Get some life experience before you judge every single mother out there!”
Life after baby may have had its ups and downs for the Instagram favourite, but Polites remains unapologetic in her use of social media, combining the same fitness posts from her pre-baby life with intimate breastfeeding snaps. “…it’s a normal part of life,” she said. “I’ve had so many people come up to me and say thank you for sharing that photo (of breastfeeding).”
While trolls are unfortunately, inevitable when it comes to social media, Polites has expanded her brand to include a fashion line named after her little one, Evaliah Grace.
Who doesn’t love an ambitious working mom? You do you, Hannah.