Last week, Kirstie Alley's picture was splashed across every People magazine in America.
Why was her picture on the cover of People magazine? Why???? Did she cheat on her husband? Was she caught drinking and driving? Does she have a drug problem? No, it was none of these things.
Kirstie Alley was on the cover of People magazine because she had gained weight.
I don't know about you, but I'm not sure I believe gaining weight should be national news. And maybe the fact that People magazine thinks it is news is part of the reason why we all have trouble maintaining a positive attitude about our bodies. Are we secretly afraid that if we gain enough weight, our "after" picture will suddenly appear on the front of every trashy magazine in America?
Not only is it problematic that People is willing to use Alley's weight gain to sell magazines, it's also a problem that Alley describes herself in such unflattering ways.
In the article, Alley says, "I was so much more disgusting than I thought!" I simply cannot tolerate this kind of talk. It does no one—not Alley, not us, not anyone—any good at all. In fact, all it does is reinforce the notion that there is only one way to be beautiful: by being ridiculously thin. And, as we all know, that's simply not the case.
(If you don't believe me, look at the gallery of gorgeous women I have included on the right side of this blog. All of these women are beautiful and not one of them could rightly be described as thin.)
Alley admitted that she's gained over 83 pounds since she stopped being the Jenny Craig spokesperson a year and a half ago. Okay, fine. She slipped. We all slip. I know that as well as anyone since that's the reason I started this blog. The thing for Alley to do is to re-focus on what right's in her life (and with her body) and eventually her weight will likely go down again.
But Alley is unwilling to do that. Instead of focusing on what's right with her appearance, she has called herself "schlumpy" in a national forum. What Alley seems completely oblivious about is that her words aren't just about her—they're about all of us. Because if Kirstie Alley sees herself as "schlumpy," how are the rest of us supposed to feel?????
And that's where I draw the line: I will not stand by and let the Kirstie Alleys of the world bring the rest of us curvy women down. I will simply not put up with it. So until Alley has a better attitude, she's off the list. She's dirt to me. I'm done with her.
Incidentally, I want to point out that it was after Alley stopped doing Jenny Craig—in other words, after she stopped dieting—that she gained all of this weight. And that's because diets don't work.
Alley is now saying that she's going to "toss the butter" to get back to her ideal weight, but that just tells me she still doesn't get it: if she cuts out butter now, what's the first thing she's going to do after she's lost the weight? That's right. Load up on butter. If you didn't believe that diets don't work before hearing Alley's story, I hope you believe it now. Alley's weight has been up and down for years. She's the the epitome of why diets don't work.
And speaking of her ideal weight, Alley says that she has to be below 140 to really look good and that 128 pounds is her ideal. 128 pounds?!!! Is she kidding? I haven't weighed 128 pounds since before I stopped growing! Alley is a five-foot-eight, 58-year-old curvy woman, and she wants to weigh 128 pounds?!!! That's less than five pounds from being underweight according to the National Institute of Health!
And how did she come up with this magic number? When she was in her thirties, Cheers executives pushed her towards this weight.
I don't know what's more disturbing—the fact that Alley, at 58, wants to get back to her thirty-something weight or the fact that she would allow television executives to dictate what her ideal weight should be. I would think that after all those years in Hollywood she would know as well as anyone that the standards TV and movie execs hold women to are both unnatural and unhealthy.
So I say, shame on you, Kirstie Alley!!! Shame on you!
You are an absolutely stunning woman at any size, and if you cannot see that, then it's time you looked at the world around you. Most women would KILL to look like you! And unfortunately, many women undergo painful plastic surgery to have a face—or breasts—as beautiful as yours. So it's time you stopped dumping on yourself and reinforcing the incorrect notion that beautiful women only come in one size. I, for one, won't stand for it. And I don't believe my readers will either.
We need famous curvy women to be proud role models for the rest of us. And if you can't do that, Kirstie Alley, then please keep your negativity to yourself.