Serena Williams Has Been Tuning Out Her Body Shamers For Years

The professional tennis player reveals she doesn't care what people think about her body and neither should you


Whether you're Hillary Clinton, Kim Kardashian, Emma Watson or Kate Middleton, female (and male) celebrities will have experienced some form of physical scrutiny at some point in their careers.

From what they wear, how they style their hair, what make-up they use, how much they weigh, it seems celebrities are never far away from the dreaded red circle in a tabloid newspaper or hateful trolls online who think they have a right to judge another person's appearance.


One person who has endured her fair share of body shaming is Serena Williams.

Despite a 20-year-long professional tennis career, four consecutive Grand Slam wins and 22 major tournament successes, Serena has relentless back-handed comments regarding her figure, sexuality and gender.


But, in an interview with Fader, the athlete has opened up about how she learned not to care about other people's opinions of her and that unconditional self-love is the most important thing for a woman.

'People have been talking about my body for a really long time. Good things, great things, negative things. People are entitled to have their opinions, but what matters most is how I feel about me, because that's what's going to permeate the room I'm sitting in. It's going to make you feel that I have confidence in myself whether you like me or not, or you like the way I look or not, if I do. '

'That's the message I try to tell other women and in particular young girls. You have to love you, and if you don't love you no one else will. And if you do love you, people will see that and they'll love you too,' she added.


The Olympian also touched upon the injustice of confining women's sexuality to one description. Referring to her dance routine in Beyoncé's video Sorry, Serena says:

'It was 'she's too strong,' and then 'she's too sexy,' and then 'she's too strong' again. So I'm like, Well, can you choose one? But either way, I don't care which one they choose. I'm me and I've never changed who I am.'

However, William's self-confidence has not been built overnight. Throughout her career she has learned to ignore comments about her figure and refuses to indulge in other people's negative energy.

'I've purposely tuned people out since I was 17. At the time, it was basically newspapers and maybe a website article. Maybe if the web was up back then. Since the day I won the U.S. Open, my very first Grand Slam, I never read articles about myself.

'If I saw my name mentioned, I'd look away. I looked at the pictures, but that's pretty much it. I didn't want to get too cocky, and at the same time I didn't want to have that negative energy. I don't know why I did it, but I did it. Ever since then I've been really low-key,' she concluded.

Low key? Perhaps.

Strong, independent, feminist? Definitely.

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