Kate Winslet's 'Chubby Childhood'

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
5/19/2009 9:09 AM   :  86 comments

Kate Winslet has enjoyed a lot of recent career success, and is often at the top of "best dressed" lists for her fashion and style. She is proud of the fact that she has curves. She isn't afraid to show them off in form-fitting dresses or in a partially-nude photo shoot for Vanity Fair, but comments about her figure haven't always been positive.

In her younger years, Kate was bullied for being chubby and classmates gave her the nickname "Blubber." These days (warning: the language in this article is a little strong), Kate is an advocate for real-sized women, and wants to draw attention to the fact that the images on magazine covers aren't real. Those pictures have been retouched to hide any flaws, and that's after the person has been in hair and makeup for hours.

Kate says she still sees herself as the fat kid in school. She doesn't consider herself as a beauty, but rather as someone who is just ageing naturally.

Do you appreciate celebrities like Kate Winslet who are comfortable with being a "normal" sized woman? Are you surprised that someone like her, who's had so much success, is still affected by the negative comments from her childhood?


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Comments

  • 86
    it makes me feel good to hear celebrities who have or are having weight issues because it makes them look human.i love Kate Winslet i think she is a wonderful actress - 1/30/2010   10:49:32 AM
  • FRANNIEV
    85
    I love Kate Winslet, she looks so healthy and happy, especially compared to some other celebrities of her caliber. Maybe I'm bias because I've always been the fat kid, but I thought she looked great in Titanic as well, and she was a bit chubbier then compared to photos I've seen nowadays. I'd be happy if I could get down to that weight, whatever that weight was.

    I'm not surprised she's still hurt about the comments. I think that's something that stays with you forever. I know I've convinced myself I'll always be a fat kid, partially because that's what I was told by some mean-spirited people when I was younger. I hope as I lose weight, I can accept the new, thinner me that appears. - 11/16/2009   9:04:07 PM
  • GGABRIELE
    84
    I will never forgot some of the awful comments made about her weight and size after she starred in the film with Leonardo DiCaprio - Titan. I was horrifed to read them and wondered how on earth that poor girl could read those and not be affected by those mean spirited words. She has risen to the challenge many times over since then and all I can say is "Kate - you rock" - what a fabulour role model - 9/18/2009   10:51:38 AM
  • 83
    what a great role model! MOtivation! - 6/6/2009   10:09:56 AM
  • RCPARSONS
    82
    Unfortunately, as long as people keep buying the magazines with the flawless pictures, magazines will continue to produce what sells. I made a promise to myself last year not to buy any more magazines or watch "gossip" news. I may be one person but imagine how quickly the "industry" would change if everyone decided that beauty is more than a "doctored" photo on the cover of a magazine. - 5/21/2009   10:05:23 AM
  • KIMMY1445
    81
    I do look up to Kate. I think she is very beautiful and appears to be healthy and happy. And no, I don't find it surprising that she still sees herself that way. It's hard to forget hurtful things that people say, even as kids. And it's also hard for one's self-esteem to be as favorable as other's opinions of you. - 5/20/2009   11:08:21 PM
  • HISPEQUE
    80
    no doubts she is a beautiful lady but is she in good health? life is all about being healthy, health assures a person freedom from minor ailments and keeps away possibility of any major ailment. the state of total health gives a person a level of happyness one cannot buy - 5/20/2009   9:09:46 PM
  • GONNABETHIN5
    79
    I THINK KATE IS A BEAUTIFUL PERSON.SHE DOESN'T APOLOGISE FOR WHO SHE IS AND SHE SHOULDN'T HAVE TO. I'VE ALWAYS ADMIRED HER. I LOOK TO HER FOR INSPIRATION. - 5/20/2009   7:33:10 PM
  • 78
    It's a real pleasure to find celebrities who admit they too have flaws and most of us know that models on covers are airbrushed. Can't get airburshing in real life. Childhood barbs still sting later in life. I like the fact Kate W is a real person, more celebrities should be like her. - 5/20/2009   7:00:09 PM
  • 77
    I love to point out when a celebrity has a healthy way of looking at their own bodies...we are so led astray by looking at a lot of celebrities and their unrealistic weights. - 5/20/2009   5:35:58 PM
  • 76
    I love Kate Winslet because she is a real woman, not a tooth pick. One of few Hollywood women who is not. It sickens me to see how unhealthy some celebrities look. How on earth is a hollow, sunken in face and skin streached so tightly over bones that you can see them sexy, or even the slightest bit appealing? I understand that some people are naturally very thin, and are teased and called anorexic even though they're not. One of my friends is naturally that skinny and is teased for it. But purposely making yourself a living skeleton is just disgusting. Yes, I am over weight, and yes I want to lose weight, but I don't want to be a tooth pick. I want to get to a healthy weight for my height and bone structure and keep my curves. Skinny would not look right on me, and once I do reach my healthy weight, if anyone tries to tell me I'm fat, I'll just tell them to kiss off and walk away because the weight I'm losing is for myself only. No one else. It doesn't matter what anyone else says, as long as I am happy with myself. - 5/20/2009   5:35:03 PM
  • 75
    As I said on a friend's Spark blog - not even cover models look like cover models with all the re-touching and air-brushing. Hurray for a woman who's not afraid to look like a real woman - curves and all! - 5/20/2009   5:21:12 PM
  • 74
    Kate is a great role model. I admire and respect her very much! - 5/20/2009   4:00:20 PM
  • 73
    I think it's great to have a woman like her as a shining example that you don't have to look like the supermodels to be successful (unless you want to be a supermodel of course). Not every woman's body is meant to look like the one on a the cover of a magazine after all. - 5/20/2009   3:32:05 PM
  • 72
    I think Kate Winslet is a great example. I wish that more of Hollywood would follow her lead and just be at a comfortable healthy weight, rather than the sticks and twigs that some of those poor girls end up being. When I see starts like Lindsey Lohan, who I really wanna feed a veggie burger too, it just makes me sad for her. Go Kate! - 5/20/2009   3:00:18 PM
  • 71
    I am so glad to have a FEW celebs that are willing to stand up to societys pressures and say its ok to be a NORMAL size. We all need to realize that most of the celebs out there are not normal sizes and trust that we are all beautiful no matter what size. - 5/20/2009   2:20:23 PM
  • 70
    Great to know "celebrities" struggled too as youngsters. But truly, I would like to see stories from our Members who had to deal with these issues as children and how it has affected them today!! - 5/20/2009   1:26:02 PM
  • 69
    I'm glad I made SURE that my children weren't fat growing up. I especially didn't want my dd to be. She's 18 now and 5'9" and 136# and has ABS. She took a one hour SPIN Class and said it about KILLED HER. The 8 women in the class told her that she was the ONLY new person who lasted the full hour, as most quit after the first 10 minutes. They'd been doing the class for up to 7 years. - 5/20/2009   12:51:16 PM
  • 68
    Funny how we spend our entire adult life getting over the words said to us as a child - 5/20/2009   12:46:33 PM
  • MIEZEKATZE
    67
    I love Kate! She's fab. - 5/20/2009   12:13:38 PM
  • 66
    i think a lot of people are haunted by those mean kids from their childhood. but all of our experiences in our lives shape who we become as adults, and if you can use those experiences to learn and grow and move on from, then you will be a stronger adult, in my opinion. it's all in how you take it. i think it's commendable for her in today's media to say that she accepts her body how it is and isn't going to submit to the pressure to "look like everyone else". i think she looks great! - 5/20/2009   12:09:04 PM
  • 65
    If we were all supposed to look the same genetics would have kept us that way. Hurray for Kate and people like her. Everyone is individual, and it's these differences which make us all attractive. - 5/20/2009   11:00:24 AM
  • 64
    I think anyone is still somehow affected by negative comments from their childhood, this is how people become who they are when they grow up. It depends on what they make of it, whether to let it affect them negatively or not. She is someone who has really set her foot in this industry and goes on her on way. - 5/20/2009   10:24:10 AM
  • DENISE0310
    63
    Kate's a wonderfully talented actress and a very beautiful woman ... and I love what I've read about her over the years. She's real. She fought magazine publishers when they computer-altered her image for their cover. She holds herself to human standards, not Hollywood Star standards. I didn't know she was taunted in grade school for her weight ... I think in some ways we all carry those taunts throughout our lives. It may still be there, & there may be times when it surfaces ... but she's moved way beyond it. She's a marvelous success story in so many ways!! Thanks, Kate, for who you are & for what you've given us. - 5/20/2009   9:27:44 AM
  • 62
    I love her attitude but am sorry that she is still haunted by her childhood. Kate inspires me to be happy with who I am (only a good size, not my currently chubby self). - 5/20/2009   8:44:20 AM
  • 61
    Kate is a beautiful woman no matter what her dress size. Add to that, one of the finest actresses of her generation. I love the fact that she is comfortable in her own skin and revels in the knowledge that she isn't runway model skinny and will never be. Way to go, Kate!!!!!! - 5/20/2009   8:23:00 AM
  • 60
    Kate Winslet is one of the best things to happen to Hollyweird and magazine covers!! Thank GOD there is a "real" woman out there to bring reality back in vogue!
    As far as how the childhood stuff sticking w/ her...trust me , it NEVER truly goes away. I still hear it sometimes in the back of my head nearly 40 yrs later..."Hey Camel-ass...Water Buffalo ... or Little Angus" and that were only a few of them. These were the high school ones, that made me come home in tears (which I tried to hide, but couldn't). My mother took me to a doctor to get diet pills ... and sure I lost the weight, but the exchange was a 35 yr addiction to amphetimines. I had gone straight from little girl to WOMAN without that adolescent figure ... and I was 1 of the very few who had. Mentally....no. But I finally realized that the only way to fight weight is to do it right ...change eating habits and exercise, but I wasted a lot of yrs destroying myself before I learned that. Thank GOD its all good now!! - 5/20/2009   8:19:24 AM
  • 59
    I was teased constantly as a child for being fat- in fact back in the 50's and 60's being fat was very uncommon- there were 2 overweight girls in the grade school I went to ( k-6th grade) not just the class room now as you go by jr high schools- 75% of the girls are overweight! My brother was the meanest of all- I am still struggling with my weight, I still pleasure and punish myself with food, even when I got to an average weight I still felt like a mammoth cow. Right now I'm dealing with some issues of feeling inadequate so the weight is piling back on - 5/20/2009   7:05:27 AM
  • 58
    my brother called me "butter butt", when she sits, she spreads. lovely, eh?

    k - 5/20/2009   6:52:39 AM
  • YUYUNHYE
    57
    when i was a teenager i was ultra thin and fit. i would always laugh at those girls who are larger than me. never would i thought i would be like them one day after i was badly thrown out from the volleyball team due to a bad knee fracture. and to this day i feel bad.

    now i am 25 years old weighing about 68kg and i am more determined to lose weight NOT because i want to look good but the importance of being healthy.

    yes, media spoils all of the human. - 5/20/2009   1:13:34 AM
  • 56
    She is definitely someone to be admired, particularly for maintaining herself how she feels comfortable when there is so much pressure to be otherwise. - 5/20/2009   12:34:40 AM
  • 55
    I think names can have an impact on people years after they have "grown wp". Name calling is bullying and it hurts. I applaud Kate for being honest about her weight. At least she is not a "pin-thin" like so many others who cave to Hollywood. Queen Latifah is another woman I admire for her proudness of herself the way she is! Go girls! - 5/19/2009   11:35:54 PM
  • 54
    I am glad that "real" women make it sometimes!! It just goes to show that words are stronger than we give them credit for. The saying "sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me" is just so wrong! They do hurt for a long time!! - 5/19/2009   10:48:13 PM
  • 53
    Great for her. She helps make a difference for all of us. I appreciate her position. - 5/19/2009   10:47:34 PM
  • 52
    I'm not surprised how affected she was by those comments. i know how affected I was by comments about me when I was younger and still remember them even if I've been out with movie stars etc. - 5/19/2009   10:34:30 PM
  • 51
    name calling doesn't go away no matter how old you are, you remember. you just live around it and sno't let it get inyour way - 5/19/2009   9:40:06 PM
  • 50
    Up until I was seven years old I was underweight. No one said anything, but I was fairly scrawny. It turns out I had to chose between eating or breathing because of severe tonsillitis, and well I liked breathing. Once I had my tonsils out I started gaining weight. Sadly quite a bit of it.

    It wasn't until middle school that the name calling started. That continued, and sadly just made it worse. I would be called names, then I would go and eat something to make myself feel better. I tried to lose weight before transferring schools my senior year but that didnt work out.

    It's important to know that women are not the waif like androgynous people on the covers of magazines. Kate Winslet has been one of my favorite actresses since I saw Titanic where I thought she was gorgeous. It is good to know that women like her are able to talk about the damage that name-calling can cause, and come forward with ways to combat it.

    I heart Kate Winslet!

    - 5/19/2009   8:58:29 PM
  • 49
    Weight was always an issue with me. I never considered it a problem until high school and the kids began teasing me. I have tried all kinds of diets and have come to the conclusion that I must learn to manage who I am and what I become. - 5/19/2009   6:02:33 PM
  • 48
    I look back at those "Jeremy the blimp" and "lard-ass" and stuff like that and when I see those people I laugh. I've gotten in shape and they're all fat now!

    Feels good for a minute, then I kinda feel bad that they aren't educated on proper nutrition and the importance of physical activity. My loss is their gain, if you catch my drift. ;-) - 5/19/2009   4:55:02 PM
  • 47
    Hooray to any women especially one who is famous, who stands up for what they believe in. Not everyone is a size 1, and almost no one is as perfect as the magazine covers portray them.
    I was a fat kid in grammer school, but even though I had a fat nickname (porky), I was asked by the other kids in my class if it was okay to call me that. I never took offense by it, because we all had crazy and weird nicknames for each other. I do admit I was never chided for being the fat kid in class (there were a few of us). We were just all friends. - 5/19/2009   4:12:46 PM
  • DIALMELO
    46
    Childhood is what shapes who you are later in life. Comments like that do stick with you. My sister is working through an eating disorder because of what she went through. I'm definitely overweight because something was lacking.

    With increased media (magazines, tabloid television, etc) comes the idea that we will never be good enough. When you begin to take yourself out from that kind of negativity, you start to feel OK about yourself. - 5/19/2009   3:30:03 PM
  • 45
    I think that all girls (I don't know about boys) feel that their bodies aren't what they are supposed to be. I was not fat, or even overweight, at all until my mid-30's.

    I was always a Misses size when my younger sisters, and their friends, were Junior sizes. Most of my schoolmates were Junior sizes. I wore a size 10!

    I also went from having a child's figure in 6th grade to wearing a C-cup in 7th. My Mom, and hers, did the same that at about the same time.

    I guess what I'm saying is that most girl's/women have a somewhat negative view of their own bodies, no matter what the truth is. I look back on the pictures of me in Junior High and High School and I'm amazed, now, that I felt that I was over weight. The only time I didn't wear clothes to hide my figure was when I was at my Grandparent's. There, I wore bathing suits with wrap around skirts, shorts and halter tops (it was the 70's), my hair was up out of my face instead of hiding it. But then, I knew that Grandma didn't care how I looked. I knew that she loved me simply for being me.

    Maybe that's what we should be teaching our Children and Grandchildren, and reteaching ourselves. - 5/19/2009   3:03:17 PM
  • BYHISSTRENGTH
    44
    I am glad that an actress is standing her ground and not giving into the false sense of what the celebrity world deems as healthy. They all need a reality check. - 5/19/2009   2:49:18 PM
  • 43
    You know it's sad that in Hollywood she is considered any different because she's not anorexic! I'm glad that she understands and stands up for that, more women in her position should do the same! - 5/19/2009   2:42:21 PM
  • 42
    Celebrities vs. regular people - we are only different because of what we do, not how we feel or act. It is no surprise at all that Ms. Winslet would still be affected by being called blubber and locked in the art closet at school. What person wouldn't? If someone just jokes about my weight now, and I've lost 24 pounds and reached my goal weight, I still die inside.

    What is really wonderful and surprising is that, despite her fame and natural grace and beauty, she feels normal and likes herself as she is, not as who she thinks she must become. Aren't we all beautiful in our own ways? Sure, I don't get asked to do photo shoots for magazines (wouldn't that be fun???), but I feel beautiful. My face still breaks out, my breasts are deflated since I've breastfed two kids, and my skin is getting less and less firm as I get older. And? So what! I'm a talented, beautiful 40-year old woman with so much more to me than what someone might see on the outside. Besides, all who love and care and MATTER to me think I'm perfect just the way I am - no matter what way that might be today!

    You go, Kate! My hero... - 5/19/2009   2:41:44 PM
  • 41
    I enjoy seeing a woman who has a 'normal' size body. Looking at fashion models makes me annoyed -- they all look so anorexic and unhealthy looking with no shape at all. Personally, I think telephone poles look better than they do except for the fact that they usually have pretty faces. - 5/19/2009   2:35:17 PM
  • 40
    I think KW is beautiful and appropriately sassy about her body and weight.

    I can totally relate to her feelings regarding when she was a kid. I grew up in a family of 6 kids and our family culture was to pick on each other constantly. My mom and brother started calling me "Plumper" when I hit puberty (I was a thin child). Unbelievable when I look at pcitures from then. I was about 5'6" and weighed no more than 130 lbs.

    And yes, it does stay with you, although I now can consider the source and be empathic about the way my mom and brother saw and see life overall - it is not pretty. For me, I've surrounded myself now with loving, supportive people. Can my mom still make me feel like an upset adolescent at 44? Unfortunately, yes, but then I realize the love and caring husband and friends I have now. - 5/19/2009   2:32:37 PM
  • 39
    Women like Kate should be lauded!! At least they have some shape. - 5/19/2009   2:18:19 PM
  • 38
    No matter a womans size she is beautiful! The most important thing is to be heathly. - 5/19/2009   1:54:01 PM
  • 37
    I was watching "The Reader" the other night. Kate Winslet stars as an illiterate woman who has an affair with a 15 year old boy. She appears nude in the film several times, and every time I saw her, I thought, "that's the body I'm working for". She has curves, but she also has some definition in her arms and back. She is absolutely beautiful.

    I've always been bottom heavy, and growing up I was painfully aware of it with two brothers and an uncle CONSTANTLY telling me I had a huge rear end. I didn't find out until I married my husband that many men actually prefer my shape (I learned all I know about men from my fabulous husband :)). At any rate, I've learned to love my curves. And with 6 girls to raise, I'm doing all I can to prevent them from having the same insecurities about their shape that I did. I encourage them with healthy eating and letting them know that all shapes are different, not better or worse. This is the way God created them. - 5/19/2009   1:41:07 PM

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