No matter what their profession, women in the public eye are constantly subjected to unfair criticism for the way they look, whether it’s their choice of outfit or their body shape.
Elizabeth Ries co-hosts Twin Cities Live which airs on weekdays on KSTP in Minneapolis, USA, and she’s no stranger to having viewers comment on her appearance.
On Friday, February 28, Ries shared a photo of herself wearing a pair of blue jeans, with a microphone in hand, doing her job the same as any other day.
Alongside the image, however, Ries shared two remarks she received based solely on her appearance from that particular show.
The first read:
This is a strange question but where did you get the jeans you had on today? They looked so great on you. I have a similar build as you and have been looking for skinnys. I sure enjoy you and Steve!!!! Thank you – Julie.
The second email, which was the polar opposite from the first, read:
Saw you on TCL at the home and garden show and I was so embarrassed for you. Either start working out or wear much longer shirts that cover your butt. You are definitely not a good example for fitness.
Instead of taking the latter comments to heart, Ries decided to share them on social media to show how the viewer’s comments had ‘way more to do with them’ than they did with her, while pointing out that body shaming will never be acceptable.
‘I speak out about it because IT IS NOT OKAY TO BODY SHAME PEOPLE,’ she told her followers. ‘While I know that I will not spiral into depression, self harm or an eating disorder, countless studies show that fat shaming (especially of young girls) is DIRECTLY related to disordered eating. There is not a single study that shows that fat shaming leads to better health or fitness.’
This is not just an issue of Maggie not being nice with her words.
These comments can very literally lead to the serious illness or death of those they are directed at. And if she has no problem saying it to me, who else is she saying it to?
We must name it, call it out when we see it and shout from the rooftops that body shaming will not be tolerated.
Who’s with me?
We’re with you, Elizabeth.
If you’re experiencing distressing thoughts and feelings, the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is there to support you. They’re open from 5pm–midnight, 365 days a year. Their national number is 0800 58 58 58, and they also have a webchat service if you’re not comfortable talking on the phone.
Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.