Lizzo responds after Jillian Michaels makes comments about her body and health
Lizzo has been one of the most powerful forces in the body positive movement. A woman who dares to love her body as ferociously as Lizzo does is a thing to be celebrated, and yet, former The Biggest Loser personal trainer Jillian Michaels jumped into the discourse, souring it with her reductive approach to bodies and making assumptions about Lizzo’s size and physical health. Without naming Jillian specifically, Lizzo got on Instagram Live and got real about her mental health and how she feels about everyone’s “opinions.”
Jillian made her career by yelling at women until they lost weight. Hers is not an opinion any of us are particularly interested in hearing right now, and yet Buzzfeed News interviewed her about the body positive movement and instead of applauding the work Lizzo has done to create space for women of all sizes to love themselves, Jillian did the exact opposite.
“But why are we celebrating her body? Why does it matter? That’s what I’m saying. Like, why aren’t we celebrating her music? Cuz, it isn’t gonna be awesome if she gets diabetes,” Jillian said.
Jillian even added: “I love her music, my kid loves her music, but there’s never a moment when I’m like, ‘I’m so glad she’s overweight.’”
Many chimed in on Twitter to explain why Jillian’s rhetoric is so harmful.
“Equating fat with automatically being unhealthy & slim with being healthy is inaccurate & incredibly dangerous. Fat people deserve to exist without the pressure to change their size or *health.* Fat people don’t need to desire to change their bodies to be deserving of dignity,” one Twitter user wrote.
Without specifically name-checking Jillian or addressing the situation head-on, Lizzo seemingly clapped back with a blissful Instagram caption that said: “This is my life. I have done nothing wrong. I forgive myself for thinking I was wrong in the first place. I deserve to be happy.”
A few hours later, Lizzo got on Instagram Live and got real about the effect that certain social media conversations are having on her mental health.
“I be waking up feeling bad as hell, I be waking up in my feelings,” Lizzo shared in the Instagram Live (as excerpted by Buzzfeed). “And I know that my mental [health], my emotional health, and my social health already affects me in positive and negative ways. But you add the internet to that shit, boy; the internet will have you depressed as fuck.”
Again, she’s not talking about Jillian directly, but it’s no secret that it’s top of mind, which is especially clear later in the IG Live when Lizzo discussed people being “full of shit.”
“Everybody got their opinions [and] like their assholes, it’s just full of shit,” Lizzo stated. “And I think I care more about facts than opinions. I care more about my perspectives than other people’s perspectives.”
Moving forward, Lizzo says she’s done with Twitter and reading comments about herself online, “…I shut that off and I’m actually significantly happier.”