Jesy Nelson on body confidence

Roisin Maguire

The public came together on Twitter to support Jesy Nelson after the documentary ‘Odd One Out’ aired on BBC One on September 12th. 

‘Odd One Out’ documents the process of rehabilitation and self-healing that Jesy Nelson had to go through after she suffered online bullying about her appearance when Little Mix first rose to fame.

In 2011, Little Mix became the first girl band to win the X Factor and they soon began breaking world, previously records held by The Spice Girls and the Pussycat Dolls. However, with fame came cyberbullies who targeted Jesy in particular. Jesy was branded “the ugly one” or “the fat one”.

This had a serious effect on her mental health and led to a suicide attempt a number of years ago. In the documentary, she reflects on the pressure put on her to have the same slim figure as the other band members from the moment they won the X-Factor.

She told of how she was distraught from messages telling her “you deserve to die” and how she wasn’t as thin or as pretty as other band members. In the documentary Jesy admitted than on returning to perform on the X-Factor in 2013, all she cared about was people noticing how thin she was after losing weight. She said that she “didn’t give a sh*t about if the performance was going to be good” and that she only cared that people noticed her weight loss.

After the performance,  Katie Hopkins shared a vile tweet saying: “Packet Mix have still got a chubber in their ranks. Less Little Mix. More Pick n Mix.” This was the tweet that she said drove her into a deep depression and she believed that no matter how skinny she was, people would still have a problem with her looks.

In an interview with The Guardian, she admitted that if she had known of the abuse she would suffer after the X-Factor she would have never auditioned. “I don’t think anything is worth your happiness, and it was a lot of my life that I won’t get back.”

People on twitter showed their support, with people sharing some of their own experiences with cyberbullying and body dysmorphia. Some said the documentary should be shown to primary, secondary and third-level students in order to prevent trolling and bullying and to teach how dangerous words can be, particularly online.

One twitter user said: “Jesy Nelson’s #OddOneOut documentary should be shown in schools and in workplaces all over the world. People need to understand what actually happens when they say disgusting, cruel and judgemental things on the internet.

After the documentary aired, Jesy shared a body confident image on Instagram ahead of their recent tour. She has spent years building her confidence back up after the online torment. She has received huge support from her fans and her bandmates with fellow band member, Perrie Edwards, commenting a complementary “Insane” under a recent post on Jesy’s Instagram.

 Roisin Maguire

Image Credit: Flickr