Kesha: paparazzi photos, mean comments fueled my eating disorder 

Kesha, who is still legally attached to Dr. Luke, bless her, is returning to her roots musically and literally. We discussed her new country music and the fact that she is doing limited gigst. Because of her ongoing legal issues with Dr. Luke, there is much she can’t say about him. But we know that among the crimes she’s accused him of, he (allegedly) forced her to maintain a certain physique under his watch and shamed her if she didn’t adhere to his standards. Unfortunately, being shamed was not foreign to Kesha as she’d lived a lifetime of it even before she struck it big, which tragically led to an eating disorder. Once she’s found fame, the bullying increased ten-fold and tapped into all of her childhood insecurities. Kesha has conquered her ED, but still suffers from anxiety. She wrote an article for Teen Vogue describing what she’s suffered at the hands of anonymous keyboard critics.

I’ve been an outcast ever since I can remember. I grew up in Nashville, with a single mom who was oblivious to social norms. She encouraged me to make music, sew my own clothes, and express myself. She told me never to be ashamed of who I was. Other kids didn’t know what to make of me.

I was often bullied and shamed into hiding the things that made me unique. I remember hanging up the velvet pants I had made by hand and asking my mother to take me to the Gap to buy some “normal clothes” at one point. That experiment failed miserably. It just wasn’t me.

When I think about the kind of bullying I dealt with as a child and teen, it seems almost quaint compared with what goes on today. The amount of body-shaming and baseless slut-shaming online makes me sick. I know from personal experience how comments can mess up somebody’s self-confidence and sense of self-worth. I have felt so unlovable after reading cruel words written by strangers who don’t know a thing about me.

It became a vicious cycle: When I compared myself to others, I would read more mean comments, which only fed my anxiety and depression. Seeing paparazzi photos of myself and the accompanying catty commentary fueled my eating disorder. The sick irony was that when I was at some of the lowest points in my life, I kept hearing how much better I looked. I knew I was destroying my body with my eating disorder, but the message I was getting was that I was doing great.

In the past couple of years I’ve grown up a lot. I’ve realized that once you take the step to help yourself, you’re going to be so happy you did. Taking the time to work on yourself requires bravery. Trying to change your life based on other people’s thoughts can drive you crazy. You have to figure out what makes you feel good and what keeps you in a positive head space.

[From Teen Vogue]

I don’t know about you but those first two paragraphs broke my heart. We, as a society, talk so much about creativity and individuality and yet so many of our actions combat that.

Kesha goes on to say that she has changed her relationship with social media. She pointed out that she loves it because it is how she talks to her fans but has started to take more breaks to reduce her anxiety. I’ve always admired Kesha’s resiliency. She has put up with so much bullsh-t and yet she doesn’t let the bastards get her down. Her return to Nashville allowed her to regroup. She’s been really smart about her reemergence to, both in the pace she’s taking to do it and by only parsing out small bits of herself at a time. She sounds in control of her destiny now and it gives me hope that she will not be taken advantage of again.

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Photo credit: WENN Photos

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14 Responses to “Kesha: paparazzi photos, mean comments fueled my eating disorder ”

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  1. detritus says:

    “We, as a society, talk so much about creativity and individuality and yet so many of our actions combat that.”
    So much so. Its too bad too, because normal is boring AF.

  2. Tan says:

    More power to her.

    Interestingly, the judge that ruled against her was married to a SoNY lawyer
    Isn’t there a conflict of interest and can there be no procedure against the judge for clearly breach of ethics??

    Why hasn’t it happened before
    Why was no investigation done into that

    If in a distant future, eventually it is done, will Kesha gets her justice and the judge be penalised and his judgement overturned?

    That poor girl should get justice.
    It would have broken any lesser person but how she is slowly and steadily moving forward.

  3. teehee says:

    You have to be weak enough to let it get to you. No one causes you anything except what you cannot properly process.
    HOWEVER of course, it doesnt help when rats in power are being said rats (whether its parent, ceo, boss, partner…)
    Especially children are entirely incapable of knowing better or fending off such assery and shold never ever be the victims of that at the hands of anyone. But, adult women are to be mroe capable. We just are collectively disempowered and made to think we cant stand up to it and will be punished if we do / to accept it when it happens. but at the end of the day, what is in your mind is for you to tend to.

    Edit: as for people being “meanies”, haters gonna hate, and the world will never ever be a nicer place. In fact it seems to be getting more cruel the more cramped and sick it is. So dont sit around blaming anyone- cos this will lead to nowhere.

    • Kat says:

      Your comments are disheartening and show a fundamental misunderstanding of the issue and obvious lack of compassion. Are you trolling?

    • detritus says:

      “You have to be weak enough to let it get to you. No one causes you anything except what you cannot properly process.”
      Say what?
      I think you said something mean, but the word salad is confusing me, and I’d like to know what exactly you are saying about someone who was chronically emotionally sexually abused by a superior and left to hang by her company before i get salty.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      Uh, that is easier said than done. I mean good for you if you can deal with “haters” but most people, young or old, can’t. At least not when it’s a constant thing. As a teenager, you barely have any defenses against that stuff and I say this as someone who only endured hurtful weight comments now and then (15-20 years ago, before social media) instead of a never-ending barrage of hate. Online or otherwise. Once it starts, even the well-meaning comments will just pile on. Not to mention the fact that Kesha in particular also dealt with abuse.

      Adult women don’t appear on earth fully formed. If you go through this as a teenager, how does that make you “more capable”? For most of us, it leaves something behind. You hide it better, maybe. Or maybe you don’t and end up with an ED. It’s not the easiest time to grow up with a sense of self-worth and to act like she was just a little too weak is cold.

      I get so angry when people come at me with “It’s all in your head. Just let it go.” Dude. We’re trying here.

    • GDP says:

      It isn’t a matter of the world being a nicer place. Is that really what you think? You seem to be a little out of touch with the subject here. Better not to speak on what you know nothing of.

  4. Eleonor says:

    I feel for her. And now I understand better why she started messing with her face.

  5. Frigga says:

    And this is why I couldn’t survive fame. My past ED would’ve spiraled out of control at all the judgments people make in HW. I am more cut out to be an everyday, real world ‘normie’. I give credit to celebrities with ED’s who make it out alive. I really love Kesha and always wish her the best.

  6. pinetree13 says:

    Aw I’m rooting for you Keshia.

  7. Stacy says:

    I initially bought into the bs argument that she just wanted out of her contract. “Dr.” Luke has successfully changed my mind. He is behaving the way abusers behave. He is not behaving the way innocent people behave. He refuses to let her leave. He refuses to settle. He demands that she stay with him. Abusers bully their victims into staying. Innocent people want someone making false accusations against them to get away from them and don’t want anything to do with them. Sending good thoughts her way.

  8. I use to date a popular DJ and he had booked her a few times. He got to know her and they became friends. He said she was a total sweetheart and completely “innocent”. Heck she even shared with him that she could count on one hand how many men she’s been with. The whole blah blah blah, tik tok stage of her life wasn’t her at all it was a musical façade. I imagine Dr. Luke had a lot to do with it telling her she couldn’t make it in the musical world unless she was sexualized. It’s really sad, but this happens to a lot of up and coming musicians. We see them on tv/air with this certain persona. We might even think their horrible people who care nothing about anything but partying and sex with strangers, but the reality is that’s not them at all most likely. I hope she can expose this POS for who he really is and I’m glad she’s finally strong enough to not let Hollywood or anyone dictate who she should be and just be herself. I’ve always liked her rapper or pop star and I imagine she’ll be a hell of a country singer too.

    • Otaku Fairy says:

      She still could have been just as sweet and not horrible even if she had hooked up with strangers or had to use both hands to count up her sex partners, but it’s true that entertainers often play up personas to brand themselves. Sometimes it could be an amped-up version of themselves or sometimes it can be completely different from who they are.
      I’m just glad she seems to at least be doing well and will be glad when she no longer has any legal ties to Dr. Luke. It was good that others in the music industry came out and supported her.

      • Naddie says:

        I believe she means in the sense that Kesha would seem to be someone who likes superficial stuff and all the package that comes with it.