Shawn Johnson Opens Up About Being Mom-Shamed For Daughter’s First ‘Flip’: ‘I Wasn’t Surprised’

Shawn Johnson attends as Vera Bradley partners with Blessings In A Backpack to kick-off back-to-school philanthropy tour at St. Vincent De Paul Center on August 15, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois.
Robin Marchant / Getty Images for Vera Bradley

Earlier this month, Shawn Johnson was mom-shamed after she shared a video of her 3-month-old daughter’s first “flip.” Now, the Olympic gold medalist is opening up about the backlash she received and admitting that she “wasn’t surprised.”

Talking to Us Weekly, the gymnast explained, “I wasn’t surprised just because we get shamers every single day.”

She further explained that everyone who uses social media has faced “negative feedback” and has “haters.”

While Shawn admits she has had to learn to have “thick skin” and not let the negativity bother her, she explained that the comments were different when they were aimed at her daughter, Drew Hazel East.

“When they come after my kid and start questioning … it’s the first time I felt like they were threatening my love for my child. Because they had said that they were concerned for their health and well-being,” Shawn explained to the outlet.

Although she wasn’t too happy about the comments regarding the well-being of her daughter, Shawn kept a positive attitude as she explained why she thinks moms sometimes attack other moms.

“We as moms are so passionate about our kids that sometimes we attack other moms because whatever has worked for us is kind of like our bible. We almost preach it onto other people, which you can’t do since everybody’s different.”

Since posting the video of her daughter, it has been viewed over 2 million times. With the video, Shawn preemptively defended herself in the caption by explaining that her young daughter was safe during the flip. Despite assuring her fans everything was fine, she still faced backlash in the comments section from people who didn’t think it was a good idea.

While there were plenty of negative comments on the post, some of Shawn’s fans supported her and were shocked to see that she had to defend herself in the caption.

Although the 28-year-old is retired from gymnastics, Shawn Johnson competed in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and took home three medals. Shawn took home a gold medal for her stunning performance on the balance beam. She also won three silver medals for the team, all-around, and floor exercise events.

Shawn married her husband, Andrew East, in 2016, and they welcomed their first child together, a daughter named Hazel, in 2019. She often shares photos of her daughter on Instagram, and earlier this year, she shared a post showing her and her husband taking part in the “stand up challenge.”