Kourtney Kardashian Shut Down a Fan Who Asked Whether She Was Pregnant—And Ignited a Debate About Women's Bodies
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Kourtney Kardashian Shut Down a Fan Who Asked Whether She Was Pregnant—And Ignited a Debate About Women’s Bodies

Is it ever okay to ask a woman—especially one who's publicly undergone IVF—whether she's pregnant?

Vitamin-gummy mogul Kourtney Kardashian delivered yet another clapback to a commenter who speculated that she might be pregnant. In a since deleted promotional image for the Poosh founder's latest venture, Lemme, Kardashian sported a skintight neon set that hugged her curves. 

“Is she pregnant,” a fan wondered in the comments. To which Kardashian responded, “The after affects of IVF (I only acknowledge this comment bc I do think it's important to know how IVF affects women's bodies and it's not spoken about much) ... also are we still asking women if they're pregnant?” She concluded the comment with a yellow heart emoji.

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For context, this is far from the first time Kardashian has been forced to shut down pregnancy rumors or clap back against body shamers. She has been incredibly forthcoming about the ups and downs of in vitro fertilization (IVF). The 43-year-old began trying for a baby with drummer husband Travis Barker after marrying the rocker last year, and her IVF journey was documented heavily on Hulu's The Kardashians. The star has been particularly frank about the physical and emotional toll of undergoing the process—the hormonal fluctuations and weight gain associated with it as well as the attending public scrutiny of her “thicker body.” Near the end of last year, 10 months after deciding to quit IVF, Kardashian told followers that she was finally start to feel like herself again

Her rhetorical question—are we still asking women whether or not they're pregnant?—is a valid one. Sadly, it seems, the answer is yes, despite a broader cultural shift away from this line of questioning in formal interviews with media outlets. When it comes to other people's bodies, the terms of basic respect generally dictate that questions and commentary of any kind—positive, negative, or seemingly benign—are never kosher. Why be nosy and rude when you could simply mind your business? 

But Kardashian's social media exchange raises another question—one with murkier ethical implications. In a @commentsbycelebs thread discussing her clapback, some argued the nature of Kardashian's celebrity makes discourse about her body fair game. “Whilst it’s an inappropriate question, this family literally monetized their bodies and then they wonder why people ask when their figures change,” one commenter wrote. Indeed, Kourtney and other members of the Kar-Jenner clan have made millions by promoting and normalizing beauty standards, then selling products and procedures to people who want what they have. On the backs of their followers, the Kardashians have turned the never-ending pursuit of unattainable physical ideals into a billion-dollar family business. 

Perhaps, then, it's not so simple to parse whether and how Kourtney Kardashian's body should be discussed. But I'm guessing this won't be the last time we try.