Mum-of-3 Jessica Cunningham: I feel the pressure to be ‘perfect’ on Instagram

We chat to Mother of Maniacs blogger and The Apprentice star Jessica Cunningham about messy living rooms, feeling like a ‘ratty dragon’, and the pressure of Instagram making her feel ‘insignificant’…

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A fair few of you might remember Jessica Cunningham from 2016’s series of The Apprentice and a later series of Celeb Big Brother.

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But she’s since given up reality TV fame in favour of her Mother Of Maniacs blog and raising her 3 young daughters, Poppy, Olive and Hattie, with boyfriend Alex.

Oh, and she’s due to give birth to her and Alex’s 1st child together any day now!

Chatting to MFM after her Mother Of Maniacs event, we found out what life’s like now for the busy 31-year-old businesswoman and blogger…

Jessica Cunningham on: her home life 

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“My girls are 6, 5 and 3. People who know me know I’m always full of energy – but people who don’t know me go ‘Ooh bl**dy hell you’ve got your hands full haven’t ya’.

“I love having my hands full though, I couldn’t imagine not. The only time I haven’t is when I catch up with Emmerdale. I’m an Emmerdale fanatic, but apart from that…

“I’d say I’m very fun, I’m strict and fun – a nice balance. We’re always acting daft, and we have a lot of fun in the house with singing and dancing – but I’m very strict if the children have done something wrong, then they know it’s wrong.

“I also don’t stress over the small stuff. I used to, but now, I want to teach my kids that other people’s opinions don’t matter.

“Also, my house is a complete and utter tip all of the time.

“My mum still does my washing and the kids’ washing. Whenever my mum looks after the kids, she always tidies up my house for me. When I’m rich enough, I’m gonna be getting a cleaner.

“At the end of the day I’m a mum of 3 kids, and I’m pregnant, and I’m working.

“It’s exactly how you would imagine it would be – the housework always fails, sometimes I promise to do things and then other commitments get in the way, and I get the parent guilt thing.

“It’s a constant balance of spinning plates.”

Jessica Cunningham on: her pregnancy

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“At nearly 37 weeks pregnant, I’m a ratty dragon… but Alex is such a lovely person, and he’s really involved in the pregnancy.

“He didn’t even drink for 5 months. He was just said, ‘right, I’ll stop drinking now, not until the baby’s born, because you can’t’ – though he cracked a month ago.

“He was like, ‘I need to have a drink with your bloody hormones’.

“I was like, ‘don’t be daft man have a beer’. And he was like, ‘nope’. He wanted to know how I was feeling.

“He’s a very good stepfather to the girls, and he’s very much his own person. When he came into the family, with the kids, he likes to take charge. 

“With the girls, we always have a conversation, because we’re essentially raising them together, and then with the newborn baby it’ll still be the same. Even now we have little arguments over what’s right and wrong with the kids.

“We have done a few firsts together, though. We had a 4D scan which I never had before with any of the girls which was quite nice.

“We also don’t know what sex we’re having. I love the not knowing. I want to know, but I want to have that intuitive feeling and I just don’t have that yet.

“I just don’t know what I’m feeling – one minute I’m adamant it’s a girl, the next it’s a boy.”

Jessica Cunningham on: being an ‘Instamum’

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“Sometimes, on social media, people portray a lifestyle that isn’t real, it’s the best version of themselves, and even I’m guilty of doing that.

“But oh my God, even I’m like: ‘Why do these Instagram mums look so damn cool?’

“My Instagram stories show a very different side to me. Me in my stories is just me in no make-up, in my glasses, doing anything, just talking day to day.

“During the day and the school run and stuff like that, I’m very much a Converse person, hair up,sweats on. Day-to-day, I wanna look nice and feel nice, but I just can’t be bothered…

“Everyone is doing their own thing – and people follow you or engage with you because they relate to you, so you have to keep being yourself because there will be people out there who relate to you.

“The thing is: when you become a mum everyone is doing the best for their kids, but I think even [I feel pressure about it].

“We sent the Mother Of Maniacs invite out to some of the mum bloggers and I got some feedback that some were a bit funny about it, and that made me feel a bit insignificant, and not good enough.

“Then I thought, ‘No, why should I?’, and luckily it was a really good event. And I’m quite a confident, self-assured 31-year-old, and that affected me.

“But somebody who wasn’t that confident, I can see how it would mess with their head, because it messed with mine.”

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Images: Mother Of Maniacs/Alexandria Hall, Instagram/Jessica Cunningham

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