Marie Osmond is shedding light on how harmful it can be to make comments about a person’s appearance.
The 63-year-old singer and television personality told the New York Post’s Page Six that a producer once berated her over her weight while she was filming the popular 1970s variety show “Donny & Marie,” which she and brother Donny Osmond starred in as teens.
“It was on that lot that I was taken out to the back by some head of the studio — and I’m like 5 [feet], 5 [inches] and about 103 pounds,” Osmond said, recalling her weight at the time. “And he basically said, ‘You’re an embarrassment to your family. You’re fat.’”
The message, she said, was that “250 people were going to lose their jobs because you can’t keep food out of your fat face.”
That’s when extreme dieting became a “real deal for me,” she said, and she dropped to “about 92 pounds.”
But she later had an “aha” moment that taught her that “body dysmorphia is a real thing.”
“I was in [a] dressing room, bending over putting on my pantyhose, and there was a girl in there changing who was just an emaciated skeleton with skin on her,” Osmond told Page Six. “And I just thought, ‘Oh, my gosh, that’s so sick,’ and I stood up and realized that girl was me.”
Despite getting through “those really tough years” with the help of her parents, Osmond is still heavily engaged in diet culture. She has been a spokesperson for Nutrisystem for years, and recently launched a weight loss program with the company for women over age 55.
If you’re struggling with an eating disorder, call the National Eating Disorder Association hotline at 1-800-931-2237.