A Full-Time Job
When Tori Roloff became a mother in May 2017, she knew she was going to have her hands full with the toughest full-time job she’d ever held. The months that followed would show her just how much she’d underestimated the difficulty of her new life. As it turns out, even the best parenting books can’t prepare you for everything you’ll face as a new mom.
Making Major Adjustments
Tori Roloff was no stranger to taking care of kids. She’s a kindergarten teacher and continued to work through the majority of her pregnancy. Her experience with working with kids definitely helped prepare her for some of the challenges of motherhood. After her son was born, she said she couldn’t wait to get back to her classroom and introduce her baby to her “other kids.”
Tori’s Rise To Stardom
Tori became famous whenever she started dating Zach, a star on TLC’s Little People, Big World. The show captivated viewers with its inside look at how a family made up partially of dwarfs was able to maintain a major business and loving family. Tori’s “new” family included Amy and Matt—Zach’s parents—as well as his twin brother, Jeremy, and his younger siblings, Molly and Jacob.
An Honest Look At Dwarfism
Fans loved the show for its honest look at people with dwarfism, as well as for the heart-warming look inside a family that truly loved each other. It was a show based on honest relationships. There was never a sense that the show was about exploitation, and the fans loved it so much that TLC renewed the show for a second season.
It’s no surprise that when several members of a family live with a condition like dwarfism there are certain challenges that must be overcome. That was certainly the case for the Roloffs. As a child, Matt had to undergo many surgeries to help treat his diastrophic dysplasia. Zach needed many of those same surgeries whenever he was young. Amy managed to avoid major surgeries.
A Chance To Spread The Truth
Whenever The Learning Channel approached the Roloffs about doing a reality show the family jumped at the opportunity. They viewed it as a chance to educate the public about dwarfism, and what it meant to go through the daily challenges of living life as a dwarf. They became stars almost overnight and were soon taking pictures with fans and signing autographs.
Opening The Door For More Opportunities
Following the success of the original show, TLC decided to launch Little People, Big World: Wedding Farm. This show, which premiered in 2012, gave Matt and Amy a chance to fulfill their goal of becoming wedding planners. While the Roloffs still had plenty of fans, the spinoff show simply didn’t draw in the viewers like the original program, and after just one season Wedding Farm was cancelled.
Not Everyone Enjoyed The Stardom
As is often the case when people achieve overnight stardom, not everyone in the family was happy with the idea. The Roloff’s youngest son, Jacob, left the show, stating that the family was starting to be portrayed on film as something they were not, and that he didn’t want to play a “character” when in actuality he had nothing in common with the other members of his family as they were being shown on TV.
Tori Joins The Show
Zach was always a show favorite among the fans. The program highlighted his romantic endeavors a few times, but success truly came whenever Tori started working for the family. Like Zach, Tori was shy and humble, but it soon became obvious to viewers that the couple was a perfect match. After working on the farm for four months, Zach and Tori started dating.
Zach Pops The Big Question
Zach and Tori dated for about four years when he finally asked her to marry him. Zach said that Tori had helped him come out of his shell, and while he was terrified to pop the big questions, he said that he had learned to not care what other people thought of him thanks to his time on the show.
On July 27, 2015, Zach and Tori were married, with most of their friends and family in attendance, along with a crew from TLC, of course. It was the highlight of the show’s 9th season and marked the second wedding the family had filmed for the show (Zach’s twin, Jeremy, had married his girlfriend on a previous episode).
The Roloff’s Drop A Bomb
While the wedding of Zach and Tori was a big, positive moment for the Roloff family, later that year they announced some major news that most viewers were very upset about. After 30 years, Matt and Amy were getting a divorce. They announced that they would continue to work together on the family business and that their love of their family would not dwindle.
Tori Drops Another Bomb
While the fans of Little People, Big World were still reeling from the news of Amy and Matt’s divorce, Tori and Zach announced more news that would shock fans, but for happier reasons. He and Tori were expecting a child. The couple was told that there was a high chance their child could have some form of dwarfism, but it didn’t seem to affect their happiness in the slightest.
An Unsurprising Diagnosis
While Zach and Tori knew from the get-go that there was a chance their baby could be diagnosed with dwarfism, it became official in May 2017, whenever doctors confirmed that their child had achondroplasia, the same condition that Zach has. The news did nothing to bring down the spirits of the parents-to-be, though, and Zach and Tori were still as excited as ever to meet the newest Roloff.
Shortly before the birth of their son, Tori and Zach celebrated being together for seven years. Tori took to Instagram with a post that contained a personal message directly to Zach, letting him (and all of the fans) know how thrilled she was with the life they had built, and that she prayed every day to be a better wife to him.
The Big Day
On May 12, 2017, Zach and Tori welcomed baby Jackson Roloff into the world. As expected, the baby was born with dwarfism. Zach knew that his son was going to face some challenges because he’d faced them himself. He said that what most people can do in two steps, his son would have to take five, but that he was committed to being the best parent he could be.
Life As Normal
Following the birth of their baby boy, Zach and Tori were determined to lead a normal life, despite Jackson’s disability. Tori showered her son with love and made frequent posts on Instagram for her growing fans to follow. She kept everyone updated on Jackson’s progress with eating, sleeping habits, and engaging in fun activities like watching soccer with Zach!
Tori’s First Big Hurdle
As the daily challenges of parenthood continued to roll by day after day, Tori soon faced her biggest hurdle, yet. As many mothers can relate, a lot of women assume that breastfeeding is a natural thing and that the process will “just happen.” Tori soon found out that it’s one of the most challenging things a new mom can face. Many of her fans knew exactly where she was coming from and appreciated her honestly about the topic.
Open And Honest
While many mothers are embarrassed when it comes to discussing breastfeeding, Tori remained extremely open and honest about the subject on social media. She kept everyone informed about the difficulties she was having in feeding Jackson and how all of her appointments with her doctor were going. The fans loved her openness and honesty regarding her own struggles and the overall stigma that breastfeeding has.
The Taboo Of Breastfeeding
For many new mothers, breastfeeding seems like a “no-win” situation. On the one hand, breastfeeding in public is considered by many to be completely taboo. At the same time, there are others who would criticize a new mom for not providing the appropriate nutrition for their newborn if they didn’t breastfeed. This double-edged sword results in a lot of confusion and frustration among new moms.
A Nationwide Debate
It is legal to breastfeed in public in 49 of the 50 states in the U.S. However, despite the overall legality of the practice, mothers are still berated openly if they breastfeed in public. Those who feel that breastfeeding in public have no problem verbally accosting mothers and stating just how opposed they are to the practice. Tori Roloff finds this unacceptable and plans to do something about the verbal abuse and, in her opinion, extremely inappropriate actions of some opposers.
Using Her Fame To Spread The Word
Tori fully admits that when she first started breastfeeding in public she felt extremely awkward. But then it dawned on her that it’s a natural process and that she shouldn’t feel awkward or ashamed about trying to care for her son. That’s when she took to social media regarding the subject and so many people started showing their support of what she was saying.
Sticking With It
Tori was very open about her difficulties when she first started breastfeeding Jackson. But she stuck with it, and eventually, she was posting updates on the progress she and her son were making. She told her fans that they were “working together,” and that she was extremely about how far they’d come since they both started the process. While many moms give up and turn to formula, Tori stuck with it.
Flooded With Support
The support Tori received publicly from her fans was pretty overwhelming. She had thousands of moms praising her for being so open and honest about her struggles and support of public breastfeeding. Many fans reassured her that she should not feel ashamed or degraded about her decision, just as mothers who decided to give up and move on to formula should not be made to feel guilty.
Support From More Than Just Moms
It wasn’t just moms who were supporting Tori and commenting on her Instagram posts. One supporter also mentioned that she was a nurse at a women’s center and added some insight on the topic. She said that hospitals have really pushed for all women to breastfeed in recent years, but that it simply won’t work for everyone. Because of the pressure, the field has seen a tremendous increase in postpartum depression diagnoses over the past several years.
Not The Only Roloff With Motherhood Problems
Tori wasn’t the only woman in the Roloff family to struggle with being a new parent. Her sister-in-law, Audrey, had also publicly posted about how difficult it was to cope with the range of emotions she was feeling about becoming a new parent while also trying to run a business. Audrey was going to have a little girl, and the idea was frightening the daylights out of her.
How Do You Balance It All?
Audrey would frequently post questions and seek advice from other moms in their fanbase regarding the act of balancing everything. She had no idea how she was going to be able to handle all of the pressures of being a new mom with the pre-existing pressures of running her own business. She felt lost and was seeking some support from more experienced moms.
Audrey Gets Plenty Of Support, Too
Like her sister-in-law, Audrey soon received an outpouring of support from other moms, reassuring her that what she was feeling was perfectly normal and that there is always a fear of the unexpected for new mothers. Further, many of her fans told her that she should focus on her baby and that the business should be a secondary priority for the time being.
More Hollywood Support
Tori isn’t the first celebrity to take a stand regarding the subject of breastfeeding. Plenty of celebrity mothers have spoken up about taking a stand against making nursing mothers feel ashamed of feeding their children in public. Some of the other personalities who have gone public with their opinions are Alanis Morissette, Chrissy Teigen, and Gisele Bündchen, who have all gone public with photos of them breastfeeding their children.
A Real Family, With Real Ups And Downs
People may assume that celebrities have the world handed to them on a silver platter, but what Tori has shown through her Instagram posts is that she and Zach are normal parents, with the same, normal issues that other parents face every day across the globe. She’s also shown that with the right amount of love and support all of those daily challenges can be overcome.