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Eva Longoria‘s message is clear.
Much like her contemporaries, the actress’ personal life has been a subject of public fascination for more than a decade, but the topic that is most recurring is pregnancy. The ongoing “is she?” speculation sparked again recently when photos emerged of the Golden Globe nominee while on vacation standing on a boat, appearing to sport what some believed was the beginning of a baby bump.
Blame the angle, blame the pose—Longoria blamed lactose intolerance.
“I saw some pictures of myself really fat on a boat and I have to tell you all I did was eat cheese,” she told fans on Snapchat. “Everybody is saying I’m pregnant and I’m not. I was just lactose intolerant apparently. I just had to share because my whole family is calling me asking me if I’m pregnant. Yes, I look pregnant, but that was just a ball of cheese in my stomach…everybody gets bloated.”
You can say that again, Eva!
This is far from the first time she’s unnecessarily had to defend herself against naysayers calling her body into question, particularly years ago when the Desperate Housewives star decided to gain weight for her character, who had given birth to twins on the ABC series.
“I’m just fat!” she told inquirers in September 2008 when pregnancy speculation began, a year after her wedding to ex-husband Tony Parker. She set the rumor mill to rest (for a moment) when she told reporters she spent the summer indulging in pizza and pasta like anyone else. “Tony and I went crazy this summer,” she said.
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“I’ve stopped working out and gained about seven pounds over the summer, which is a lot for a small person,” she later told Allure. “It’s like: ‘Oh my God. She’s fat.’ I hate that message they’re sending out to young women everywhere who think: ‘God, she’s a size zero and she’s still too big’…I never went up a size. I just got a little rounder.”
While Longoria has been able to brush off the questions with grace and humor, she hasn’t been the only famous woman faced with a media microscope. Jennifer Aniston took the tabloids to task last summer when photos of her similarly on vacation in a bathing suit gave some people the (false) notion that she was expecting.
So, she released a response in the form of a poignant and articulate essay published by The Huffington Post to say—in more words—back off.
“Yes, I may become a mother some day, and since I’m laying it all out there, if I ever do, I will be the first to let you know. But I’m not in pursuit of motherhood because I feel incomplete in some way, as our celebrity news culture would lead us all to believe. I resent being made to feel ‘less than’ because my body is changing and/or I had a burger for lunch and was photographed from a weird angle and therefore deemed one of two things: ‘pregnant’ or ‘fat,'” she penned.
“The objectification and scrutiny we put women through is absurd and disturbing.”