Serena Williams rose to fame when she was a young teenager on the tennis courts. She went on to win numerous championships including the prestigious Wimbledon, and as an athlete, she has become a household name. Now, Serena Williams reveals body shaming that has plagued her for years.
Recently, Serena welcomed her new baby girl, Alexis Olympia, Jr., into the world, which stirred up some memories from Serena’s own childhood. Serena was always athletic, but once she was pushed into the limelight, a lot of people began criticizing Serena for her looks and ‘manly’ figure. For years, she was body-shamed and it really took a toll on her confidence and self-esteem.
“It isn't always easy to be on the stage playing a tournament and have someone making a comment about your body,” Serena shared.
One of Serena’s competitors on the court, Maria Sharapova, shared hurtful comments calling Serena ‘thick’ in her new book Unstoppable: My Life So Far. “First of all, [Serena Williams’] physical presence is much stronger and bigger than you realize watching TV. She has thick arms and thick legs and is so intimidating and strong. And tall, really tall.”
A New York Times writer wrote, “Her rivals could try to emulate her physique, but most of them choose not to.”
While many seem to feel justified to insult Serena for being built the way God made her, one celebrity stood up for Serena. Author J.K. Rowling famously came to Serena’s defense when a Tweeter said Serena was only famous for being ‘built like a man.’ The author shared a photo of Serena looking glamorous and beautiful in a red dress and high heels, with the comment “she is built like a man. Yeah, my husband looks just like this in a dress.”
Now that she’s raising her own daughter, Serena wants to make sure that her girl knows just how beautiful and special she is all the time. Words can definitely hurt, but know who you are inside is super important. These are some powerful thoughts!
WATCH: Serena Williams Reveals Body Shaming
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