Thanks, but no thanks. Chicago TV reporter Marcella Raymond was stunned and hurt when she received an anonymous letter from a viewer telling her that she should lose weight if she doesn’t want to lose her job to a thinner, younger woman. The 50-year-old broadcaster, who has worked at WGN for 18 years, shared the insensitive letter on Facebook on March 22 and tells Us Weekly in an exclusive statement that she hopes it will inspire others to be less harsh.
In the anonymous letter, the person writes that Raymond is an “excellent reporter” but she’s “gained too much weight,” and claims that soon “management will view your being significantly out of shape as a reflection of your not caring.”
Raymond tells Us that although the unsolicited advice obviously hurt a little, she’s not going to stop living her life.
“Honestly, if I lost 20 pounds I would feel better about myself, but I would do it for me not anyone else. I've learned to not be so hard on myself. This is me and, at 50 years old, I've finally accepted me,” Raymond says. “My job is to report the news in the best way possible so it's informative and viewers get a clear message. I pride myself in my writing. When I come on TV in their homes, I hope viewers are interested in what I have to say and how I tell a story. Not about how gorgeous or skinny I am."
“The letter writer just made me mad like, ‘Who do you think you are to send such a stinging letter?’ It did make me step back for a minute and feel a little pain, but it was short-lived," she continues. "I didn't publicly post the letter to say, ‘Poor me. Tell me how pretty and wonderful I am.’ I posted it because I couldn't believe someone would take the time to send an anonymous letter to someone they don't even know under the guise of being ‘concerned’ about their job. I think, as a society, we've become more mean and intolerable of anyone different from us or not perfect. Perfection is too hard to try to get to, let alone maintain. I would rather enjoy my life than be obsessed about my weight. I hope, because of my story, someone will think twice about what they say.”
Since sharing her story, Raymond tells Us that she hasn’t heard back from the anonymous critic, but that people have been amazingly supportive.
As one supporter perfectly summed up on Raymond’s Facebook: “That person is a real scumbag.”
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