Miriam Margolyes says she has renewed understanding of self love and body image thanks to women from the body positivity movement.
In an interview with The Guardian, the actress spoke about the influence that the body positivity movement has had on her attitude towards her own weight following the filming of her new documentary, Miriam’s Big Fat Adventure.
Margoyles admitted that part of the reason she took part in the project was to explore “how other people cope with” being fat.
She said that she had struggled with her own weight all her life, especially as a teen.
“It made me less attractive sexually,” she said, “It made me miserable often”.
Margoyles said that meeting women who are part of the movement while filming the documentary has helped her to in her own journey of self-love.
She told The Guardian that she never really believed that she could be both fat and happy until she met them.
“I admired them. I wished I could be like that.”
Margolyes said, “I think I’m much more compassionate about myself than I used to be.”
Margoyles said the plus side of this was she felt she could grow her personality and career as a funny woman.
“When I went to university, I realised that I had a spark of something that was more valuable than beauty. I had energy, and energy is always attractive.”
“You can’t go around miserable all the time, so you have to make people laugh,” she laughs.
While Margoyles’ honesty about her experience of fatness and obesity is refreshing, she retains her trademark humour when she declares, “I don’t want to be a conventional anything!”
And in spite of her clear internal struggle with her body image she adds that she does really love her face. “I think when people look at me, they smile, and they don’t smile mockingly, they smile affectionately. And I love that.”
Unlike her body, her sexuality was never something that Margoyles struggled to accept.
"I like men, I really do. I just don't feel groin excitment," she laughs.
“(But) It gives you an identity because you can say, ‘I am a lesbian.’ I still think it’s an absolutely terrific thing to be”. However, on coming out to her parents in the late 1960’s she said, “It hurt them too much and it didn’t please me particularly, so I think it was an error.” Despite her parents’ struggle to accept her sexuality Margoyles says, “I’m remarkably un-bitter, really.”
Zoe Victoria is a freelance writer. You can follow Zoe on Twitter @Zoe__V