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Chelsea Clinton Remembers ‘Older White Men’ Commenting on Her Body as Early as Age 12

When it comes to body image and the media, many celebrities have talked about their personal struggles and how public commentary made them feel. It’s a complicated issue, and it becomes even more difficult when you’re a tween girl going through puberty in the public eye. That’s what Chelsea Clinton went through while father Bill Clinton was in the White House.

She shared on The View on Friday how the “cruel” comments made her feel as her own body was changing, and she was trying to navigate life in the spotlight. There was one particular Republican pundit who was particularly nasty to her: Rush Limbaugh. “The most infamous, but not the only, and yet, I never internalized that,” she explained. “It was weird. I was 12, and there are these older men pontificating about how a 12-year-old looks, is weird, at best. It’s really disgusting and cruel.”

The conversation comes out of a Today Show segment where former First Daughter Jenna Hager Bush talked about keeping weight remarks off the table with her own kids. She followed the lead of her mother, former First Lady Laura Bush, who made it a priority to focus on her twin daughters’ health, not their weight. Chelsea said mom Hillary Clinton had a similar parenting style to Laura. “I do remember my mom going on Weight Watchers when I was a kid, and even though it was called Weight Watchers, she always talked about it being part of her health,” she remarked on the talk show.

Chelsea believes her parents did a good job of protecting her in those crucial early teen years when her dad was running for office, but she found it strange that “there were all sorts of largely older white men, commenting on my looks, on my weight, on my appearance.” But because she had a “sense of self,” Chelsea understood that greatest lesson of all. “That’s about them. That’s not about me,” she summed up.

Before you go, click here for more celebrities who’ve spoken out about being body-shamed.

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