Lena Dunham is ‘leaning in’ to gaining weight back after her hysterectomy

A post shared by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on

For a few years, Lena Dunham suddenly got into fitness. She started going to Tracy Anderson’s classes, and I believe Tracy was her personal trainer for a time. The results were pretty good: Lena seemed to slim down considerably, and she wrote about how she felt better in general, but she wasn’t just losing weight to look model-slim or whatever, she was just trying to be healthier in general. Then last year, her medical issues took over. After years of struggling with endometriosis, Lena underwent a full hysterectomy. She was bed-ridden for a time and obviously she wasn’t working out regularly. And as such, she’s gained weight. Well, Lena wants you to know that she owns her weight gain. She posted the Instagram above – a side-by-side of her fit-figure with her current figure – with this message:

On the left: 138 pounds, complimented all day and propositioned by men and on the cover of a tabloid about diets that work. Also, sick in the tissue and in the head and subsisting only on small amounts of sugar, tons of caffeine and a purse pharmacy. On the right: 162 pounds, happy joyous & free, complimented only by people that matter for reasons that matter, subsisting on a steady flow of fun/healthy snacks and apps and entrees, strong from lifting dogs and spirits. Even this OG body positivity warrior sometimes looks at the left picture longingly, until I remember the impossible pain that brought me there and onto my proverbial knees. As I type I can feel my back fat rolling up under my shoulder blades. I lean in.

[From Lena’s Instagram]

For whatever record, it’s not either/or. When she was thin and working out regularly, she felt like sh-t because of endo pain. She’s not living in a constant state of pain now because she had a hysterectomy, not because she gained the weight back. That being said, I understand her body image vibe, and it comes with getting older too: you really do give less of a sh-t about all of it. You can feel better and healthier and pain-free at a heavier weight, and you can feel like every breath you take is laced with pain when you’re a size 6.

(Also: do you really think Lena was being “complimented all day and propositioned by men” when she was 138 pounds?)

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68 Responses to “Lena Dunham is ‘leaning in’ to gaining weight back after her hysterectomy”

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  1. Shelly says:

    My problem with her is her ignorance, privilege,and horrible tattoos not her weight. I know plenty of folks her height and weight but are kind folks, LD isn’t.

  2. Lily Randall says:

    Chirp chirp …….silence ……..chirp chirp

  3. Mia4s says:

    Well hey at least she’s not “leaning in” to calling Black women liars for alleging rape. So….there’s that I guess. 🙄

    “do you really think Lena was being “complimented all day and propositioned by men” when she was 138 pounds?“

    Hahahaha! Nope. But it sounds good for her purposes doesn’t it?

  4. Jenns says:

    I almost wish that celebs would stop talking about their weight. People gain weight and people lose weight. You don’t owe the world an explanation. But, it’s Lena, and this is just another way for her to get attention.

    And slightly off topic, is that another dog? How many dogs does she have? Does she still have the dogs she replaced Lamby(?) with?

  5. Cherry says:

    So, her earlier comments about feeling good by working out and getting healthy were all BS? In reality she was ‘subsisting only on small amounts of sugar, tons of caffeine and a purse pharmacy’? That’s a terrible message.

    • Mia4s says:

      No I doubt they were BS at all. She changes the narrative to fit whatever works for her ego. She’s gained the weight, doesn’t want to work on losing it (or hasn’t been able to) so it’s now the best thing ever…and if for whatever reason she loses this weight, she’ll change her comments again.

      Endometriosis is such a serious and underdiscussed issue. I really wish the cause had someone better than her.

      • Kitten says:

        Exactly this. She is so insecure and so f*cking insufferable.

      • Marty says:

        Exactly. I was about to say, not too long ago she was staning Tracy Anderson and talking about how she never felt better. I just wish there was a way I could mute Dunham from my life permanently.

      • OriginalLala says:

        There have been times when I have lost weight and thought I felt and looked great, I was also going about it unhealthily, not eating enough, using diuretics etc . At the time I didn’t really think I was being unhealthy (because I was thin! and everyone said I looked amazing!) but looking back now I was definite not healthy and though i weigh more now, I’m 150% healthier, I eat a whole foods ovo-vegetarian diet, work out, and do a lot more self care.
        Hindsight is 20/20 I guess is what I’m saying.

        I don’t like Lena but the struggle with body image and weight is one I can relate to.

      • magnoliarose says:

        I refuse to accept her efforts to align herself with body image issues. Go. Away.

    • BaronSamedi says:

      This is the part that made me take notice too. I distinctly remember her writing about how great working out was for her overall mental health and how she didn’t do it for weight loss. So now, she suddenly DID try to lose weight on purpose and did it in the most unhealthy way possible?

      Ugh. Even when she sends a genrally good message she manages to fuck it all up somehow.

    • mia girl says:

      She’s a narcissist, and like some other narcissist we are all unfortunately familiar with, she creates false realities to fit her current need for attention and as a form of self-delusion driven by paralyzing insecurity.

      It’s all such self-important drama with Dunham. And by the way, she could have made her point just showing the pictures and not including her supposed weight. Because IMO, I don’t believe she is “162″ now. She appears to weigh more, which is not a big deal, but she wants you to think she’s “leaning in” to her new body while lying about it. SMH

      Her constant BS just mucks up whatever positive message she might be able to share.

    • Millenial says:

      It’s pretty clear to me that she has issues around weight and body image, so I’m not going to judge her too hard for re-working her narrative. I don’t think she’s as far along in her journey of acceptance as she thinks she is, and that’s okay.

      In that way, I actually find her super relatable. I have struggled with previous eating disorders and now just live with an unhealthy fixation on weight, food, body image, perpetual diets, bouncing up and down the scale, etc… in a way it’s own eating disorder that doesn’t have much of a medical classification and despite professional help, has no real cure it seems.

      She sucks in other ways, but I do appreciate her public journey on this issue.

    • Veronica S, says:

      I have mixed feelings about it because I definitely went through something like this after I gained a ton of weight after developing a medical condition. I went from very active/fit to, well, not morbidly obese, but definitely pushing chubby for awhile. That’s a hard change to go through, especially because I like being active and exercising – and still am. I had to come to terms with the fact that the metabolic changes in my thirties and my condition might mean I’d never get back down to the tiny size I was and that losing weight is a much slower going process than it used to be – especially because I have an EXTREMELY busy schedule (two jobs, full time schooling, etc) and can’t stencil in three hour workouts. A part of me had to be mature enough to go, “F*ck it, this is what I look like now, and I have to find happiness in that, even if I’m trying to lose weight.”

      She’s a jackass, don’t get me wrong, but I think it’s unfair to get on her for talking about how much weight loss improved her mental health – because of course it did! She was now at a size that was respected by the social narrative and given encouragement. Now she’s back to being “fat” and all of the ugly social commentary that entails. A lot of it is narcissism, but some of it I think it is a legitimately human response to having to deal with the reality of your body.

  6. Nancy says:

    I have a gallon of fudge swirl in the freezer if she wants to bring a spoon over.

  7. Neelyo says:

    She’s just leaning in to another attempt at relevancy. Sorry Lena, time’s up!

  8. Queenb says:

    “do you really think Lena was being “complimented all day and propositioned by men” when she was 138 pounds?”

    Of course there are men into all different kinds of body types but Lena is very prone to put her own stupid thoughts into other peoples heads and then publicly talk abou them like they are facts. Odell Beckham Jr anyone? She whitewomansplained to us what he was thinking about her. In reality he was just sitting there looking at his phone.
    So I can totally see her thinking that any man walking past her wants to have her.

  9. girl_ninja says:

    I wonder how the pup she got rid of is doing. I hope it was adopted into a loving and healthy home.

  10. Blu_bb says:

    Well she lives in NYC so she probably just means the creeps who proposition all women on the street and subway.

  11. Jay says:

    So she’s saying that when she was working out with Tracy Anderson she was only eating sugar and caffeine and pills? Sounds about right.

  12. kate says:

    Has she apologized to the rape victim she called a liar? No? So she can shut up.

  13. Halah says:

    Is she throwing shade at Tracy Anderson? When she did lose this weight I swear she was doing PR with Tracy bragging about how the goal was healthy not skinny and how TA was helping her?

  14. Marty says:

    The comments on her Instagram reinforce the fact that white mediocrity is celebrated at nausea, and she still faces no real consequences for all the times she’s royally fucked up.

    Did she say her weight gain is directly caused by her procedure, because I’m not seeing that in her post? She just said she wasn’t eating much…

  15. Lisa says:

    Ok, I get that even to a feminist, male attention can still be something we pride ourselves on getting even if we hate it… But propositioned by men all the time? ?? Why does she have to include that?

  16. Tania says:

    I’ve been living through a bout of food poisoning and with no appetite and the constant throwing up, I lost about 10 lbs. But I feel terrible. I would rather exercise and torture myself through daily exercise and a healthy diet than being in such pain. I feel like cutting my intestines open. If anyone has a quick remedy for an upset stomach, please share.

    Also, even 10 lbs heavier I’m comfortable with my body. I walk around the house in front of my husband with no pants on, I walk into the closet naked to grab clothes to wear. In my 20′s when I had a better body that would have been unheard of because all I saw were flaws.

    • OriginalLala says:

      food poisoning is awful! I hope you feel better soon. Peppermint tea, fennel tea and lavendar/chamonile tea all help upset tummy and digestive issues. in a pinch you can make tea from fennel seeds you buy at the grocery store, or even chew them.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Also fresh ginger tea. Just grate some ginger let it steep and drink. Warm lemon water can help too for all day sipping. I like peppermint tea with raw honey as another option.

    • Tania says:

      @OriginalLala & magnoliarose Thanks! I’ll definitely be giving all a try. I had peppermint tea and honey this morning and it gave me a reprieve getting to work. I have fennel seeds but will stop by the grocery store to pick up every type of tea mentioned and give everything a try. You are the best!

    • hogtowngooner says:

      Hope you feel better! Food poisoning is horrible.

      And I totally get what you mean about your twenties. I was way thinner than I am now but all I saw back then were all the ways I didn’t measure up to the “perfect body.” Now that I’m in my mid-30s, I realized that not only did those “perfect” women have their own hangups about body image, but I was chasing an ever-moving goalpost that just made me feel like a failure. Life’s too short to live by the expectations of strangers, real or imagined.

  17. lucy2 says:

    Can we please stop giving this idiot attention?
    She publicly attacked a rape victim and called her a liar. She is not someone worth listening to about anything.

  18. Shannon says:

    Gawd, her writing is so pretentious.

  19. Dazed and confused says:

    Typically, I don’t have time for Lena and her profundity, but in this case I can relate. I had a total hysterectomy 8 years ago after a 27 year struggle with endometriosis. After the surgery, I promptly gained 20 pounds. Each year since, I have gained weight. In order to even maintain weight I have to basically starve AND walk a daily marathon. My metabolism basically stopped dead. Unlike Lena, I am not embracing the gain. I hate it. I was tiny, 5′ 2″ and between 110-120 lbs. I definitely felt better at that weight.

    However, I have really enjoyed not having excruciating pain for 10-15 days a month, not having menstrual migraines, not needing to run out of a room to vomit from the pain….I will never have anything but sympathy for women with this horrible disease. I even find myself a bit envious of her acceptance.

  20. JennyJazzhands says:

    So, you were lying about getting healthy and feeling great? Or lying about feeling great now? Not shocked.

  21. NYC_girl says:

    I had a full hysterectomy 4 years ago (4 months after a bilateral mastectomy) and I besides feeling totally exhausted, I was not bedridden. I was a little sore, but I was told to walk around and stay OUT of bed. A few days later it felt like nothing happened. Maybe I was lucky? I am in my 40s. But, the hormonal crap of forced menopause has been rough, esp the hot flashes. It really does affect your body, but I never gained weight until recently. Perhaps she had complications from her surgery; I had endometrial cysts that had to be removed, and since I had breast cancer, I decided to have a full procedure and reduce my risk. Shitty eating and bad habits won’t help, either.

    • westerner says:

      NYC_girl — Well I’m impressed. I had a full hysterectomy in my 40s and no way did I feel as though nothing had happened a few days later. I did drag myself back to work part time after 10 days, but that probably wasn’t the greatest idea. They told me to wait six weeks. I’m sure recovery time varies in part due to techniques — laparoscopic or open or whatever — and time under anesthesia. Like Dazed and Confused, I had immediate significant weight gain (maybe partly because the prolific and prolonged periods went away?). It’s been tough ever since to keep below the obesity threshold.

      When my daughter lived in NYC she would call me when out walking because she said talking loudly and obviously to Mom was the best way to tone down the constant propositions and ass grabs.

      • Dazed and confused says:

        @westerner – I’m sorry you are having a similar struggle with surgical menopause weight. It is so frustrating. If one more doctor just shruggs and says, “well, you ARE older now….” congrats on having less pain, though!

      • NYC_girl says:

        UGH… it is all a struggle. The hot flashes kill me. Many during the course of the day, esp in the evening. Best wishes to you though – we all heal differently. I was so tired I couldn’t walk a few blocks without having to stop and sit!

  22. Justmyopinion says:

    I don’t mean to be offensive, but she isn’t a very attractive woman. That said, she could have been getting compliments left and right, because people do compliment those on the thinner side, irregardless of face.
    This is also the girl who dated one of the world’s most hideous-looking males, and insisted on “still being with him” in a very weird way after they split.

  23. elimaeby says:

    Okay, I am in no way trying body shame, but Lena is about my height/size. I buy that she was 138 in the picture on the left, but, girlfriend, please. In the one on the right, she is about my size now and I am 186 pounds. Do I have some weight I want to lose? Damn right I do. But I am not going to lie about my size. There is no way this woman only weighs in the 160s. She is not 4’11. I’m so tired of celebrities lying about weight/size because it gives us mere mortals neuroses about what we weight. Rant over. Thanks for listening.

  24. Bridget says:

    I hate that she is implying that the only way to be thin is to starve yourself. Being healthy – exercising, eating balanced meals with lots of veggies – isn’t impossible and it’s not just a means to an end. But no one forced her to work out with Tracy Anderson, who is notorious for getting clients to starve themselves.

    • Ladida says:

      x10000. For someone being body positive, she’s actually shaming thin people. I think she just has very unhealthy eating patterns, hence the huge fluctuations. You don’t need to starve yourself, but you shouldn’t overeat either. Neither is a mystery.

  25. EmBee says:

    The picture on the left is from either before Girls or right at the beginning of it, so no she isn’t shading Tracey Anderson.
    Lena is full of it and I rolled my eyes at how many other celebs praised her instagram post yesterday. Did they all forget the horrible, downright racist nonsense she pulls?

  26. Susie Moloney says:

    I’m not a fan. BUT I will say that men are relentless. I’m in my 50s (!) and a man yells something most days. This morning a guy on a BIKE yelled ‘nice ass,’ when I was walking the dog. And yeah, it was at me. So YES I do believe she was propositioned all day, every day.

  27. ocjulia says:

    She keeps saying she wants the focus taken off of women’s bodies, and then she posts this stuff – ASKING for people to comment on her body.

  28. Shasha says:

    “Also: do you really think Lena was being “complimented all day and propositioned by men” when she was 138 pounds?”

    Yes. Because she lives in NYC. I think street harassment is rampant pretty much anywhere that you walk on the street as a woman in the USA. But especially in NYC. I would be surprised if Lena DIDN’T get propositioned by men all day simply by virtue of being a woman walking around NYC. But it’s not a “compliment.” It’s things like, “hey b**** let me lick your a**hole.” It’s disturbing, disgusting, and stressful.

    However, I don’t think 138 lbs has anything to do with it. I was propositioned and harassed all day by men in NYC at 158 and it happens to people at 258.

  29. Dr Mrs The Monarch says:

    She needs to clarify her phrasing. Is she lifting spirits by cheering people up, or lifting spirits by downing a bottle of vodka? A dog in one hand and a glass in the other?

  30. Yes Doubtful says:

    I don’t think it has anything to do with her age. She seems to have always tried as hard as possible to look unattractive. From bad haircuts to terrible clothing. She has the worst style. Personally, I don’t think the extra weight fits her pear shaped body. Some people just don’t carry extra weight very well and she’s one of them. BUT if she’s happy, then good for her!