Valerie Bertinelli is responding to an online critic who told her she needs to lose weight in a tearful Instagram video posted on Thursday night.
The television chef and former Jenny Craig spokeswoman took to her social media to share that she had been combing through recipes in preparation for a new cooking video when she made the mistake of reading the comments. She quickly came across one that critiqued her physical appearance and recorded a video of her response.
"See, I don't have a scale or I don't have clothes that I'm trying to put on every day and I don't have mirrors, so I don't see what's become of me. So I needed that help to let me know that I need to lose weight," she said sarcastically. "You're not being helpful, because when you see somebody who has put some weight on, my first thought is that person is obviously going through some things. Because if I could lose the weight and keep it off, I would."
The Losing It author went on to note her lifelong struggle with weight saying "since I haven't been successful with that my whole entire life, at 61 I’m still dealing with it…you think I'm not tired of it, lady?"
Bertinelli's impassioned video ended with her asking, "Where's the compassion?" She also added a long caption explaining her emotional reaction to the comment.
"Aren’t we tired of body shaming women yet?!" she wrote. "I was going to delete my stories because it’s a little embarrassing and scary to be so vulnerable. But then I realized it was hitting it a ‘good’ nerve with so many of you who were so sweet to dm and share your same vulnerability and struggles. We all could use a little more kindness and patience and grace, because we just never know what someone else is going through. So here it is. Not deleting. Owning it."
And in response to her authenticity, Bertinelli received an outpour of love and support in her comments.
"I love you," wrote Demi Lovato. "You said it yourself, you're already enough AND whoever said that is hurting.. or not being shown enough compassion in their lives.. I'm sorry you had to deal w this. Here for you always."
"This video is everything. Beautiful Valerie, you inspire, you encourage, and you make people feel like everything is good and right. You have done this your whole life. You win," Ree Drummond added.
Michelle Branch also shared her own experience with similar criticism. "You're so beautiful and such an inspiration. I've been on the receiving end of comments like these so many times. Hell, half my life!" the singer wrote. "It f***ing hurts. Thank you for being vulnerable and authentic and always leading with such heart."
While Bertinelli has used her platform for conversations and motivation surrounding weight loss, the childhood actor opened up in an interview with People back in March 2020 about her lifelong struggle with body image that resulted from hurtful comments she was exposed to as a young teen in the spotlight. She's since announced an upcoming book titled Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today inspired by her recent journey of self-love and acceptance.
And in the aftermath of Thursday evening's raw post, Bertinelli returned to Instagram on Friday morning to share her gratitude for the people who showed their support for her.
"There's so much kindness out there. I certainly do not feel so alone anymore. It's the shame part that's really hard to get rid of, that stupid emotion that is absolutely useless. But I just wanted to say thank you," she said in the video. "Let's have a really f***ing great day today, you guys!"
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