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This article originally appeared on People.com.
Busy Philipps has a tip for fans who want to approach female celebrities and comment on their weight: don’t.
The 38-year-old actress told her Instagram Story followers about an awkward encounter she had at a Rite Aid Friday night with a female fan who recognized Philipps from her time on the ABC/TBS series Cougar Town and made an uncomfortable comment about Philipps’ body.
“She was so sweet and had such a calming manner and in a loveliest way, she said, ‘You’ve lost some of your plumpness from Cougar Town. You look nice still, but you’ve lost some of your plumpness.’ ”
While Philipps said she thought the fan had the best intentions, she couldn’t help but be bothered by the woman’s words.
“It was a compliment. She was very sweet when she said it. It just was an interesting choice of [words],” Philipps said. “I don’t think I was plump.
“There’s no way to really handle it in the moment without coming off like an a——,” she added. “So you just have to say, ‘Oh, I’m glad you liked the show’ and moved on.”
Sadly, this isn’t the first time Philipps has experience this sort of a comment from a stranger.
“You know how when you’re a woman, sometimes people feel like they should be able to comment about your body all the time or make laws about your body? Well when you’re an actress, or any female in the public eye, everyone feels that they can comment on your body all the f—— time. Always,” she said. “The amount of people in my long 20-year career in this industry who’ve come up to me in grocery stores and Bed Bath and Beyonds to talk with people about my weight … I think it’s a good thing to err on the side of ‘Let’s not talk to people about their bodies unless they bring it up first and they want to talk about their bodies.’ ”
The mother of two, who has been open with her followers about her recent Whole30 journey and often shares videos of her LEKfit workouts, went on to say that there’s a way fans could say something about her weight without being offensive. “There’s a difference between saying to someone, ‘You look amazing!’ You look great,’ ” she said. “There are ways.”
Later, Philipps wondered whether the woman had been watching the season of Cougar Town when she had gone back to work five weeks after giving birth to her daughter Cricket. “This is how my brain works,” Philipps said of the “plumpness” comment. “I’m going to be thinking about this for the next … whatever.”
This article originally appeared on Time.com.
Aly Raisman, a six-time Olympic medalist and one of the most accomplished gymnasts in U.S. history, says she was sexually abused by Dr. Larry Nassar, who worked as the women’s gymnastics national team doctor for decades.
Raisman is the second member of the gold medal-winning 2012 Olympic women’s team to accuse Nassar of abuse. In October, her teammate McKayla Maroney tweeted that Nassar molested her for years, beginning when she was 13. Raisman disclosed the abuse in an interview scheduled to air Sunday on CBS’ 60 Minutes, as well as in her new book, Fierce.
Nassar, who worked as a volunteer doctor for USA Gymnastics, is currently in jail awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to child pornography charges in Michigan. He is also named in more than 100 lawsuits filed by gymnasts and athletes he treated while working with USA Gymnastics and at Michigan State University. Those suits claim he sexually abused athletes under the guise of medical treatment. Nassar resigned from USA Gymnastics in the summer of 2015.
In the interview, Raisman says she spoke to FBI investigators about Nassar after competing at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero in 2016, after an investigation by the Indianapolis Star revealed that USA Gymnastics had a policy of not reporting sexual abuse reports unless they were filed by the victims or a parent.
Raisman, who competed on the 2012 and 2016 Olympic teams and is the nation’s second most decorated female Olympic gymnast, is pushing for change at USA Gymnastics, which governs the sport and oversees the selection of world and Olympic teams.
“I am angry,” she said in the 60 Minutes interview. “I just want to create change so [that young girls] never, ever have to go through this.”
In a statement to the program, USA Gymnastics said it has adopted new policies that require “mandatory reporting” of any potential abuse. “USA Gymnastics is very sorry that any athlete has been harmed…we want to work with Aly and all interested athletes to keep athletes safe.”
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It’s easy to advise someone who is in an abusive relationship, "You should just leave." After all, why would anyone stay with a person who hurts them? Unfortunately, the decision is nowhere near that simple, says David B. Wexler, PhD, author of When Good Men Behave Badly and executive director of the Relationship Training Institute in San Diego.
For one thing, taking off puts an abused partner at risk. “There’s a spike in abusive behavior when a victim tries to leave the relationship,” Wexler tells Health. “It’s the single most dangerous time for the victim.” Instead of judging a friend or loved one for not breaking things off, know that they are probably weighing many variables and figuring out the safest course of action. Here, Wexler explains what a few of those variables can look like.
They're afraid their abuser will come after them
As Wexler explained, leaving the relationship automatically puts an abused partner in an unsafe situation. Would he track me down? Attack me? Ruin my reputation? These are the thoughts that typically race through a victim's mind as they contemplate ending things. Says Wexler: “The person may actually be making a calculated decision that the relationship is abusive, but if I leave it could get even worse.” That's especially true if the victim doesn't have a safety plan in place, such as housing arrangements and a go bag of essentials.
They're worried about finances and family
Financial dependence, a family who needs them, pets to take care of—all of these can make splitting from an abusive partner feel impossible. “If someone is financially dependent on their partner’s income, [they may worry about] being able to support themselves if they leave,” says Wexler. These practical issues are compounded when young children are involved, since leaving will create further hardship for their kids.
Sharing the responsibility of children is the most profound bonding experience ever, and breaking that bond can be a scary prospect, even if a victim shares the care with an abuser. “The prospect of breaking that bond becomes much more formidable,” adds Wexler.
Wexler says he has never met with a victim who didn’t feel some shame about the position she was in. That shame leaves an abuse victim terrified of judgments and accusations from outsiders. “The idea of letting other people know [about the abuse] and the possibility that they might pass judgment—Why did you choose him? Why did you stay with him? What did you do to make him do this to you?—is really scary,” he explains. "Nobody wants that."
They still love their partner
As anyone who has ever been in a tricky relationship knows, love is not logical—and just because someone hurts you doesn’t necessarily make you hate them. “Many people who are in abusive relationships want the abuse to stop, but they still love the person,” explains Wexler. “They still feel emotional attachment and value a lot of aspects of the relationship; they just want the abuse to go away.”
If the abuser engages in both physical and psychological abuse, the relationship is next to impossible to repair, says Wexler. But if they are able to take responsibility for their behavior, make determined efforts to change it, and show genuine empathy for the effect the behavior has had on their partner, recovery can be possible.
Sex has lots of proven body benefits: It can help reduce pain, make it easier to sleep, and strengthen your immune system. But it also may have an unexpected effect on your mood, leaving you feeling sad and blue after the action is over—so much so that you might finding yourself crying.
This sadness has a name: post-coital dysphoria (PCD). Ian Kerner, a New York City–based sex therapist, describes PCD as "[feelings of] sadness, anger, and distress generally post-sex and often post-orgasm." You might experience it during a hookup, but it also happens when you're with a partner you feel close to and the sex itself felt pleasurable. In fact, you don't need a partner—PCD can even happen during or after masturbation.
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Not only is post-sex sadness a real thing, it's surprisingly common. A 2015 survey of college women published in Sexual Medicine found that 46% experienced it at least once; 5% reported feeling sad and lonely after sex multiple times in a four-week period. "There appeared to be no relationship between PCD and intimacy in close relationships," the study authors noted. The study focused on women, but it can strike men as well.
Kerner says PCD isn't well researched, but he believes the sadness has to do with hormones. "Especially for women, sex and orgasm can release the hormone oxytocin, which facilitates attachment and connection," he explains. If you're having a casual sexual encounter, you'll still feel that surge in oxytocin. Cue the realization that you're not in a long-term commitment with your hookup partner, and your emotions can be set off. If you are with your SO, your sadness might reflect on unhappiness with your relationship.
Sex also makes us feel vulnerable, and that vulnerability can bring on tears. "Post-sex is a reflective period, and that can bring up emotions and experiences you normally keep under wraps," says Kerner. That in turn may trigger a floodgate of tears and feels. Kerner gives the example of a couple who have fallen into a pattern of fighting and then having makeup sex. "With a pattern of fight, have sex, and repair, the sex may feel great, but afterward, you may realize you aren’t really connected or you're still angry."
Past trauma can contribute to your post-sex blues too. Survivors of sexual assault, for instance, might feel very emotional if the sexual experience reminded them of being assaulted. And people who base their self-worth on how their partner feels about them are more likely to feel depressed after sex—if their partner doesn't treat them with the closeness they were hoping for.
If you experience PCD and you aren't sure why, "it’s a good reason to see a therapist, who could help cultivate some self-insight," suggests Kerner. He also says that giving yourself an orgasm via masturbation, and then seeing where your mind wanders, can help get an idea of what might be making you feel so emotional. Whether you cry, laugh, or have another post-sex reaction, know that whatever emotions you feel are valid.
This article originally appeared on People.com.
At almost 500 lbs., Michelle Ball was an emotional eater.
After marrying her high school sweetheart at 21, she quickly gave birth to two children 20 months apart, and gradually, Ball says, “let [herself] go.”
“When I got married I was a little smaller than I am now,” Ball — who currently weighs 180 lbs. after undergoing an incredible body transformation — tells PEOPLE. “My husband at the time was in medical school and residency and we had small children. It was very stressful for both of us. I dealt with it by putting their needs before my own.”
She continues: “For every emotion I had during that time, food was my drug of choice. I kind of numbed myself that way and reached for food for sadness, stress, depression, anxiety, happiness; I celebrated with food.”
After a “never-ending cycle” of yo-yo dieting, the self-described “closet eater” says she knew she needed to change. “I would do a lot of nighttime snacking and snacking during the day,” says Ball.
“I remember looking at the scale at 497 lbs. and freaking out. I could not believe how heavy I was,” says the stay-at-home mom. “I thought, I have to take control of this because no one is going to do it for me.”
At the end of 2013, Ball, 37, read a book called Intuitive Eating, and learned about eating mindfully.
“I started really thinking: ‘Why am I eating so much? Why can’t I lose this weight? This is ridiculous – I’m a strong person, I’m educated, I’ve accomplished a lot in my life. I [was] athletic. I was not fat when I got married. I should be able to overcome this,'” says Ball. “[So] every time I went to grab food or a drink that had a calorie in it, I thought to myself: Am I genuinely hungry or thirsty? Do I need this or am I reaching for it out of habit or to fill some void?”
The Joplin, Missouri resident cut way back on portions, but still allowed her favorite foods. “I knew telling myself I could not have certain things did not work for me. If you told me I couldn’t have carbs, all I wanted was carbs.” she says. “Honestly, I’ve lost all this weight eating what I want. I still eat pizza, I still eat Chinese food. I have not restricted myself, but I eat only when I’m genuinely hungry and I stop when I’m satisfied, not stuffed…that had not been a feeling I was familiar with for about 15 years.”
Once on her new eating plan, she decided to start walking around her neighborhood. At the time, the former high school runner could barely make it around the block.
“The first 100 to 150 lbs. happened so quickly. I think it all kind of clicked and my body was like, ‘Okay. You’re eating way less and you’re exercising.’ The fat was just melting off.”
“It slowly morphed — over several years — into me walking, then jogging, then running, then running 5Ks, and then going to CrossFit with my sister, then running a Spartan Race,” says Ball who is now into heavy lifting and works out six days a week.
By August 2016, Ball had lost 317 lbs. and hit her goal weight. Her personal life also changed quite a bit. She had gotten divorced, then engaged — and had given birth to her third child.
“I really love my body because it’s taken me so long to get here and I’ve worked so, so, so hard and I still have to work hard and I will always have to work hard to not gain the weight back,” she says. “I hope [my story] helps others who are hopeless and do not know where to start.”
This article originally appeared on People.com.
An 18-year-old Australian woman died while cutting weight for an amateur Muay Thai fight, according to multiple reports.
According to 9NEWS, just one day before the fight was scheduled to take place, Jessica Lindsay collapsed from severe dehydration while she was running. Sporting News reported that she died four days later in a Perth hospital.
Leading up to her collapse, Lindsay had been cutting weight so she would be eligible to compete in the amateur fight, which had a weigh-in at 64 kilograms (which is approximately 141 lbs), the 9NEWS report said.
While the Combat Sports Commission has said that weight-cutting is not covered in its legislation, they are “constantly reviewing processes and guidelines around contest health and safety,” according to Sporting News.
9NEWS reported Lindsay’s death will be investigated by the coroner.
A GoFundMe page set up by a friend of the teen — which is raising money to help pay for funereal costs — also claimed that there were similarities between Lindsay’s death and the death of Jordan Coe. According to The Telegraph, Coe was a professional Muay Thai fighter who died in March of a suspected heat stroke while cutting weight for a fight.
The fundraising page also stated that it hopes that the teen’s “legacy will make a change and stop this from happening to anyone else.”
This article originally appeared on People.com.
Della Reese, the vocal powerhouse who later starred as heaven-sent Tess on the television series Touched By an Angel, died Sunday evening at age 86.
She leaves behind children James, Franklin and Dominique, as well as husband Franklin Lett. She was predeceased by daughter Deloreese.
“On behalf of her husband, Franklin Lett, and all her friends and family, I share with you the news that our beloved Della Reese has passed away peacefully at her California home last evening surrounded by love. She was an incredible wife, mother, grandmother, friend, and pastor, as well as an award-winning actress and singer. Through her life and work she touched and inspired the lives of millions of people,” her costar Roma Downey confirmed to PEOPLE in an exclusive statement.
“She was a mother to me and I had the privilege of working with her side by side for so many years on Touched By an Angel. I know heaven has a brand new angel this day. Della Reese will be forever in our hearts. Rest in peace, sweet angel. We love you.”
“We’re deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Della Reese,” CBS tells PEOPLE in a statement. :She was a multi-talented, award-winning performer who shined brightly on soundstages and in concert halls. For nine years, we were privileged to have Della as part of the CBS family when she delivered encouragement and optimism to millions of viewers as Tess on Touched By an Angel. We will forever cherish her warm embraces and generosity of spirit. She will be greatly missed. Another angel has gotten her wings.”
Born Delloreese Patricia Early on July 6, 1931 in Detroit’s Black Bottom neighborhood, Reese began singing in public at just 6 years old at her local church, establishing her roots in gospel music. Her vocal talent flourished and by 13 she was tapped to perform with Mahalia Jackson’s gospel group, with whom she’d later tour.
She formed her own group, the Meditation Singers, in the late 1940s, but her exposure to jazz artists like Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan sparked a desire to broaden her musical scope. Now using her famous stage name, she signed a deal with Jubilee Records in 1953, releasing six albums largely composed of jazz standards.
National fame would come in 1957 with the release of “And That Reminds Me,” a Top 20 hit and her first global seller.
She followed it up with “Don’t You Know?” — which would become her signature song, and a string of hits including “Not One Minute More, “And Now,” “Someday (You’ll Want Me to Want You),” and “The Most Beautiful Words.”
In the late ’60s she began to expand her career from a jazz nightclub act to all-around entertainer by breaking into television. She became a familiar face on the small screen, securing guest spots on a host of shows, including The Mod Squad, The Love Boat, Sanford and Son, MacGyver, Night Court, and The Young and the Restless.
Her short-lived variety series, Della, debuted in 1969, and the following year she became the first black woman to co-host The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. It was after a Tonight Show appearance in 1979 that Reese suffered a brain aneurysm that nearly claimed her life.
Reese became an ordained minister in the 1980s through the Christian New Thought branch known as Unity, leading her to found her own church, Understanding Principles for Better Living (also known as “UP Church”).
She would draw on her faith for her most famous acting role, playing the part “supervising angel” Tess on the CBS series Touched By an Angel beginning in 1994. Though the show was initially met with mixed reviews, it went on to become a huge success, running until 2003. Tess’ playful sarcasm and no-nonsense attitude added something of a humorous edge to the wholesome show, and she became its most beloved character.
Reese was plagued with health problems later in life, including a battle with diabetes which she blamed on poor diet and exercise. Following two appearances on the television show Signed, Sealed, Delivered in 2014, she retired from acting.
- Reporting by PATRICK GOMEZ and SAMANTHA MILLER
This article originally appeared on Time.com.
(BOSTON) — Former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez suffered severe damage to parts of the brain that play an important role in memory, impulse control and behavior, a researcher who studied his brain said Thursday.
Dr. Ann McKee, director of the CTE Center at Boston University, said she could not “connect the dots” between Hernandez’s severe case of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, which is linked to repeated blows to the head, and his behavior. The 27-year-old hanged himself in April, while serving life in prison for murder.
But McKee said she says Hernandez experienced substantial damage to key parts of the brain, including the hippocampus — which is important to memory — and the frontal lobe, which is involved in problem solving, judgment and behavior.
“In any individual we can’t take the pathology and explain the behavior,” said McKee, who has studied hundreds of brains from football players, college athletes and even younger players, donated after their deaths. “But we can say collectively, in our collective experience, individuals with CTE — and CTE of this severity — have difficulty with impulse control, decision-making, inhibition of impulses or aggression, often emotional volatility and rage behaviors,” she said.
Hernandez hanged himself in prison days after he was acquitted in the 2012 drive-by shootings of two men in Boston and just hours before his former teammates visited the White House to celebrate their latest Super Bowl victory.
Prosecutors claimed he gunned the two men down after one accidentally spilled a drink on him in a nightclub — and then got a tattoo of a handgun and the words “God Forgives” to commemorate the crime.
He had been serving a life sentence without parole in the 2013 killing of semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd when he killed himself in April.
Hernandez, who said he was innocent, did not raise CTE in his defense at either trial.
But after his death and September CTE diagnosis, his attorneys filed a lawsuit against the NFL and football helmet maker Riddell, accusing them of failing to warn Hernandez about the dangers of football. The lawsuit, which seeks damages for Hernandez’s young daughter, said he experienced a “chaotic and horrendous existence” because of his disease.
Hernandez inherited a genetic profile that may have made him more susceptible to developing the disease, McKee said. She said Hernandez had the most severe case of CTE they’ve seen in someone his age. Hernandez was diagnosed with Stage 3, out of 4, of the disease.
While the outside of Hernandez’s brain appeared normal, the inside showed evidence of previous small hemorrhages, which experts associate with head impacts. Other parts of his brain had begun to shrink and show large holes in the membrane, McKee said.
“Individuals with similar gross findings at autopsy were at least 46 years old at the time of death,” McKee said.