Dr Oz: Body Image & Tyra Banks
You may know Tyra Banks as a supermodel, Emmy winner, and television star, but what you may not know is that she was also the victim of bullying. Tyra Banks has had a lifelong struggle with her weight and was even bullied because of it. You may remember the famous “Kiss my fat ass!” speech she gave on her talk show when the paparazzi photographed an unflattering picture of her in a bathing suit.
Dr Oz Bullies
Tyra Banks, an author and the first African American model on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition, was a gangly child and teased because of it. She was labeled too skinny and then too heavy during her younger years. Tyra admitted to being a bully and then when she was a pre-teen and grew three inches and lost 30 lbs, she became the victim of bullying. She went into a mild depression because of the other kids, as well as, adults who bullied her. Years into her modeling career, Tyra’s mom received a phone call and was given a list of designers that did not want to work with her anymore because of her fuller hips, larger butt, and bigger bust line. Her mother’s reaction: she took her daughter out for pizza to celebrate her curves instead of being ashamed of them. Tyra felt this was an indirect way of her mother saying that having womanly curves was okay.
For women and girls that are being bullied today, Tyra suggested finding one thing you like about yourself. Come back 30 days later and find something else. Tyra believed that people bullied because they had something inside that they didn’t feel good about. Bullies picked on vulnerable people to bring power to themselves. Tyra admitted to ending friendships because certain people didn’t make her feel good about herself.
Before the show, Dr Oz had audience members write down one word that they didn’t like about themselves. Kim, one audience member, wrote the word “insecure.” After having her daughter, Kim felt that her body had gotten worse. Kim hated her arms, stomach, and stretch marks. (Who doesn’t?)
Dr Oz Bully
Tyra told Kim that people in her industry (modeling) had the same issues. To drive home her point, Tyra lifted her skirt and showed her Spanx on national television. (Gotta love her!) Dr Oz asked Kim to name one body part she liked. Kim couldn’t come up with one—so Tyra helped her out. Tyra pulled down the collar of Kim’s shirt and exposed some cleavage. “Here you go!” Tyra exclaimed as she proudly showcased Kim’s cleavage. (LOL!)
Another audience member had the word “ugly” written down. She stated that she felt ugly most of time when she was with her friend—who, btw, was sitting next to her in the audience. (Ouch!) Her friend would say things like “that shirt isn’t working” or “take that off, it’s ugly.” Her friend stood up and stated that she felt like she was helping and said these things subconsciously. Her friend apologized and said that she would try to be nicer. (Wow, outted on Dr Oz as a female dog—not good!)
Dr Oz: Bullying Marriage
Sara weighed 115 lb when she met her husband, David. Now Sara is 180 lbs. David told her things that hurt her and was constantly nagging her about her weight. Sara didn’t like being overweight and had tried to lose weight, but David complained that his wife wasn’t consistent. She would try a diet plan for a couple of days and then give up. He wanted the woman he married back. David admitted to picking on Sara practically every day. He told her things such as, “you need to go to the gym” and “you shouldn’t eat that.” (Gee, with support like that, I wonder how the pounds didn’t just melt off!) David thought he was helping to motivate his wife. Sara told him his mean comments were not helping at all and, in fact, made her want to do the opposite. (Sound familiar to anyone?)
David said that the reason he was hard on his wife was because she complained to him that she needed help. Tyra asked David why he wanted Sara to lose the weight. Tyra told him to be honest with his answer. David felt that Sara would be more confident and do more things with him if she lost weight. Tyra was baffled, figuring David would mention something about Sara’s health. When Tyra confronted him about his answer, David backtracked and commented that he was worried about her health, too. (Nice try, buddy!)
Tyra and Dr Oz called him out on that one. “We don’t believe you,” was their response. Dr Oz asked Sara what she has done to get David to treat her differently. Sara stated that she tried to love him and talk to him and tell him how she felt, but she was too sensitive when it came to her body. Tyra reminded Sara that it was important to tell him how she really felt. “That’s your truth, no matter how ridiculous it may sound to him,” Tyra told Sara. Sara then turned to her husband and gave her emotional plea as to how she felt when he spoke to her in such a hostile manner. It hurt her when he told her that she needed to go to the gym or that she shouldn’t wear an outfit. (Good for you, Sara!)
Tyra suggested to David that he should never say anything first. Wait for Sara to tell him when she was ready to go to the gym or when she was ready to eat healthier and then offer to support her. Dr Oz included that since David and Sara had been married for 10 years, they needed to re-invent their relationship. (See previous blog on marriage reinvention.) As only Tyra would, she noted that David’s body wasn’t the same when they got married, why should Sara’s be the same? (I know that’s right! Two snaps, girl!)