Taylor Swift’s new Netflix documentary “Miss Americana” exposes the most intimate sides of the pop star we’ve ever seen. The film, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on Sunday, reveals one of the most shocking hidden facets of Taylor’s life: her struggle with an eating disorder.
“It’s only happened a few times, and I’m not in any way proud of it,” the 30-year-old singer told Variety.
She continues, “[If I saw] a picture of me where I feel like I looked like my tummy was too big, or… someone said that I looked pregnant…that’ll just trigger me to just starve a little bit — just stop eating.”
Swift’s problem is one many women and men across the US and abroad are quite familiar with. “It’s not good for me to see pictures of myself every day,” she says.
So many people, famous or not, understand how scary it is to be scrutinized. You can feel all the self-love in the world, but still be hurt when someone says you’re not good enough in some way.
In the digital age, appearances feel like everything. It takes a lot to not be sensitive to criticism––we’re only human.
Swift told Variety, “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.
“I think I’ve never really wanted to talk about that before, and I’m pretty uncomfortable talking about it now.”
It is highly uncomfortable to reveal that you go through struggle, especially one like an eating disorder. But Swift’s admission that she’s uneasy with the topic is incredibly humanizing. As is the revelation that she’s actually self-conscious.
As a public figure she’s all about empowerment, but sometimes, she seems like an impenetrable force of self-confidence. And honestly, that’s not all that relatable.
Though it’s uncomfortable for her to discuss the pain she went through, millions of people from all walks of life are touched to know that even T-Swift herself feels broken sometimes. They feel less alone. So thank you, Taylor, for opening up.
You can watch “Miss Americana” on Netflix and in select theaters on January 31.