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  • Writer's pictureKristyn Burtt

Why Peta Murgatroyd's Return to 'DWTS' Should be Supported, Not Shamed

Updated: Apr 13, 2020

On Tuesday, Good Morning America answered the questions on many Dancing with the Stars fans’ minds: Is Peta Murgatroyd coming back for Season 24? Is Maks Chmerkovskiy coming back? Are they both coming back? We now know that the new parents will both be waltzing across that ballroom floor on March 20. After that excitement, I cringed because I knew what was coming next: mommy shaming. I saw it all over social media, in my DMs and comments on articles. DWTS viewers were questioning how Peta could come back so early after giving birth in January.

The idea of being a working mother certainly isn’t a new one and it’s not new to DWTS, either. In the past few seasons, we have seen Ginger Zee, Allison Holker and Jana Kramer successfully complete a season while balancing the challenges of motherhood with an infant. Are they tired? I’m sure they are. Are they taking good care of their children? Yep. Are they happy to do something for themselves? I’m pretty sure the answer is yes.

For many news moms, Peta is an inspiration to them for just getting out on the dance floor with a body that is still recovering from childbirth. There are so many incredible new joys with a little one, but I know many women feel insecure with a body that doesn’t feel like their old body quite yet. Isn’t it great that a female pro is willing to put herself out there on display to show the struggle and the success? Here’s what we need to think about before judging Peta and Mak’s family choices:

1. Work: Most Americans need to work and most households need two incomes. Just because Maks and Peta have a more glamorous job than most, they do have a mortgage, a new baby and a wedding coming up.

2. It takes a village: Maks has been vocal about being an involved parent. Peta has her fiancé and a nanny to help out daily. Although Maks admitted on GMA that Val isn’t pitching in too much, grandparents are the best at coming for a visit or two to offer a free moment for mom and dad.

3. ABC: With Derek Hough out of the picture for Season 24, the more star wattage, the better. If you were a DWTS producer and you knew you could get both Maks and Peta back, wouldn’t you? It’s an easy business decision. The network and producers will also do what they can to make this working parents’ transition as easy as possible. They aren’t going to give Peta a contestant who has a schedule similar to Laurie Hernandez’s calendar last fall.

4. Storyline: Yes, we will probably get a tired mom and dad package or two, but understand that fans have followed their engagement and baby story since Sway back in December 2015. We found out she was pregnant at the end of Season 22 and GMA has had the couple on frequently to share their baby story. DWTS is family and families have babies. So let’s support a working mom who is going out there and showing us all how it’s done. Remember, people don’t all parent the same, but they made the right choice for their family. There are going to be good days and there are going to be bad days. It won’t be easy, but we certainly don’t have to make it harder for them by acting like the mommy police on social media.


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