Taylor Swift has opened up about her battle with an eating disorder in a new documentary.
In Miss Americana, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on Thursday (January 23), Swift speaks about the pressures of seeing “pictures of [herself] every day”, saying it “wasn’t good” for her health and eventually triggered a disorder.
She added: “[I’ve seen] a picture of me where I feel like I looked like my tummy was too big, or…someone said that I looked pregnant…and that’ll just trigger me to just starve a little bit — just stop eating.”
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) January 22, 2020
Swift also elaborated on the comments in a feature with Variety this week: “I didn’t know if I was going to feel comfortable with talking about body image and talking about the stuff I’ve gone through in terms of how unhealthy that’s been for me — my relationship with food and all that over the years.
“…I’m not as articulate as I should be about this topic because there are so many people who could talk about it in a better way. But all I know is my own experience. And my relationship with food was exactly the same psychology that I applied to everything else in my life: If I was given a pat on the head, I registered that as good. If I was given a punishment, I registered that as bad.”
Swift went on to recount an example of the negative experiences she had within the industry, including one where a tabloid accused her of being “pregnant” following her appearance on a magazine cover.
“I remember how, when I was 18, that was the first time I was on the cover of a magazine. And the headline was like ‘Pregnant at 18?’ And it was because I had worn something that made my lower stomach look not flat. So I just registered that as a punishment.
“And then I’d walk into a photo shoot and be in the dressing room and somebody who worked at a magazine would say, ‘Oh, wow, this is so amazing that you can fit into the sample sizes. Usually we have to make alterations to the dresses, but we can take them right off the runway and put them on you!’ And I looked at that as a pat on the head. You register that enough times, and you just start to accommodate everything towards praise and punishment, including your own body.
“…I think I’ve never really wanted to talk about that before, and I’m pretty uncomfortable talking about it now.”
According to Netflix, Miss America is “a raw and emotionally revealing look at one of the most iconic artists of our time during a transformational period in her life as she learns to embrace her role not only as a songwriter and performer, but as a woman harnessing the full power of her voice.”
Miss America is set to be released on Netflix on January 31. It will also be shown in select cinemas.
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