Lena Dunham Explains Why She’s Happier Than Ever at Her Heaviest Weight
Photo: NBC / Getty Images
Lena Dunham is back with another deep Instagram caption, this time about what it takes to reach self-acceptance. (Related: Lena Dunham Shares How Getting Tattoos Helps Her Take Ownership of Her Body)
Yesterday, the Girls alum revealed that she’s spent too long feeling like “too much”-in every sense of the phrase. “I’ve spent a lot of time in this life feeling like too much,” she wrote in the caption alongside a photo of herself in her underwear. “Too hungry. Too anxious. Too loud. Too needy. Too sick. Too dramatic. Too honest. Too sexy (jk lol.) I was always sent the message, in insidious ways, that I took up too much room and demanded too much from life and sometimes gave too much to people who didn’t want any at all.”
Swap in your own adjectives, but chances are, you can relate; her experience is universal. No matter how you live your life, you’ll likely get subtle (or outright) nudges to tone something down at one point or another. (This is, in part, the point this recent Nike commercial was making about women in sports being told they are crazy or irrational for showing emotion.)
She went on to explain that she’s finally realized she doesn’t need to live her life seeking anyone’s approval. “At 32: I weigh the most I ever have,” she wrote. “I love the most I ever have. I read and write and laugh the most I ever have. And I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. Not the frail, precarious happiness of ‘things are going perfectly.’ The big, generous, jiggly happiness of ‘I think I’m finally starting to get the hang of this.'” (Related: Lena Dunham Had a Full Hysterectomy to Stop Her Endometriosis Pain)
This isn’t the first time Dunham has given the middle finger to society’s expectations.
After her weight loss in 2017 landed her on the cover of Us Weekly next to the words “20 Slimdown Diet Tips!” she wrote her own list of 20 reasons why she lost weight, citing things like having an anxiety disorder and having her phone number leaked. “I have no tips, I give no tips, I don’t want to be on this cover cuz it’s diametrically opposed to everything I’ve fought my whole career for and it’s not a compliment to me because it’s not an achievement thanx,” she wrote in the post.
Similarly, last year, she posted a before-and-after photo showcasing her weight gain. In the earlier photo (when she weighed less), she got compliments and tabloid attention, but in the later photo, she was “happy, joyous, and free,” she wrote.
With her latest post-where she weighs more than ever before and is happier than ever before-Dunham pointed out that getting to her current mindset wasn’t a quick and easy process, but it was definitely worth the effort.
- By Renee Cherry @reneejcherry
© Samir Hussein – Getty Images Actress and ‘Girls’ creator Lena Dunham opened up in a new interview about her dramatic weight loss in 2018 and how she now uses a food diary to stay healthy.
- After experiencing dramatic weight loss due to a breakup and endometriosis, Lena Dunham just revealed she uses a food diary to maintain a healthy weight.
- She opened up to Elle UK about how her relationship with food has evolved over the years.
- The Girls creator also discussed her addiction to prescription drugs, which she has gone to rehab for.
Lena Dunham is known for being body positive, and now, she’s opening up about her recent weight loss and weight gain in a new interview with Elle UK via People. The Girls creator, 33, experienced dramatic weight loss after breaking up with longtime boyfriend Jack Antonoff and having a total hysterectomy, due to endometriosis, in 2018. Now, she’s working to maintain a healthy weight by keeping a food diary.
“If I write down what I eat, I’ll have to hold myself accountable and accountable people don’t gain thirty pounds in a single month,” she told the publication. “Yes, I am body positive, but I am also a young single woman working in Hollywood, and I can’t just pretend that weight is not a thing. It’s a thing.”
The actress and writer further explained exactly how she lost a dramatic amount of weight after her split from Jack, the lead singer of indie pop band Bleachers.
“Sadness is the only thing that’s ever made me lose weight,” she said. “Two years ago, during the last gasps of my six-year relationship, I lost weight. Not a little weight. Not the kind of weight where your bras feel kind of generous and you marvel at your subtle but oh-wow-it’s-definitely-there-now clavicle. No, it was a lot of weight.”
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A post shared by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on Jul 10, 2018 at 10:34am PDT
At the end of their relationship, weight was falling off Lena “in double digits,” and she wasn’t happy about it. “As I explained to my closest friends, I experienced none of the heady triumph of the women showing off their formerly-huge jeans in a full page add for weight-loss pills,” she said.
Part of Lena’s weight loss was also due to an addiction to prescription drugs, which she went to rehab for. “I had also completed in-patient treatment, known to the public as rehab for trauma and prescription drug dependency,” she explained.
“It took a week, but as the drugs left my body and I made peace with the fact that I was here to heal, not just to cut my own bangs and weep (just kidding: you can’t cut your own bangs because they won’t give you scissors),” she continued. “I got real hungry, real fast. If it wasn’t nailed down, I ate it.”
Now, Lena is sober, maintaining a healthy weight, and working on a new project in England.
Video: How endometriosis disrupts women’s lives (CBS News)
Lena Dunham Gained 24 Pounds—and Is Happier Than Ever
Before-and-after posts are nothing new in the age of Instagram. But the always-candid Lena Dunham just showed us a celebrity’s perspective of how images that spotlight weight loss and gain usually don’t convey the whole story.
On Tuesday, the Girls creator and actress made a side-by-side collage with two photos: one of herself at 138 pounds and another that was taken more recently, when she weighed in at 162 pounds.
RELATED: 5 Signs You’re Getting Fitter, Even if the Scale Hasn’t Budged
Then she described how her each different weight affected her on a day-to-day basis.
“On the left: 138 pounds, complimented all day and propositioned by men and on the cover of a tabloid about diets that work,” she said, admitting, “Also, sick in the tissue and in the head and subsisting only on small amounts of sugar, tons of caffeine and a purse pharmacy.”
Dunham’s weight has made headlines for years. In this new post, she’s taking the focus off what the scale says and putting it on something a lot more important: her happiness.
“On the right: 162 pounds, happy joyous & free, complimented only by people that matter for reasons that matter, subsisting on a steady flow of fun/healthy snacks and apps and entrees, strong from lifting dogs and spirits,” she wrote, detailing the newer photo.
RELATED: 9 Before-and-After Photos That Show Weight Is Just a Number
Though she’s known for embracing her body no matter what she weighs, Dunham said she’s also been susceptible to body image issues.
“Even this OG body positivity warrior sometimes looks at the left picture longingly, until I remember the impossible pain that brought me there and onto my proverbial knees,” she said. “As I type I can feel my back fat rolling up under my shoulder blades. I lean in.”
From bearing it all on camera to detailing her harrowing ordeal undergoing a hysterectomy brought on by her painful battle with endometriosis, we can count on Dunham to share her vulnerabilities.
Before-and-after weight loss photos are often celebrated, but these explore the not-so-healthy side of achieving what some call their “goal weight.” The goal here should be a happy, full life—not one filled with restrictions.
With the recent announcement of this year’s Emmy nominations, we’ve started taking bets on who’ll walk away with statuettes, and more importantly—what they’ll wear while doing it! One of the year’s major nominees is the star, writer, and producer of “Girls” Lena Dunham, who’s currently in the process of filming the third season of the hit HBO show.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, the 27-year-old outspoken starlet stated that when she saw her publicist calling (who was trying to tell her about her nominations), she immediately thought she was in trouble.
“Not that it happens a lot, but I feel like there’s always something that I say on Twitter that is then reshaped into something really dark. I actually have the greatest publicist. She’s like, ‘I’m just living with who you are and the fact that you’re going to go out in inappropriate shorts and I’m going to have to hear about it,’” she said.
Dunham has made some negative headlines for her style choices, particularly after rocking a pants-less look last October—but she says she’s learning, even if she doesn’t entirely get it yet. “I have a lot of fantasies about what I’m going to wear that don’t correspond to reality because the people in my life will stop me from doing it—like the rabbit ears I’d like to wear to the Emmys,” she said. “I really love fashion, but I have not totally mastered what red carpet fashion means.”
Regardless of whether or not she knows what she’ll be wearing, she’s majorly excited about one thing: Fellow celebrities. “I’ll also make a more clear list of people to stalk and harass, so I can hit them up systematically rather than flail around. Last year I did not do so well and ended up following Kerry Washington around for 10 hours without actually talking to her,” she admitted. Luckily for her, Washington is another one of the night’s big nominees—in case she wants to stalk her this year too!
While they are an unlikely pair, Lena Dunham and Brad Pitt sure do have chemistry. The Daily Mail reports the 33-year-old writer surprised Brad Pitt with a kiss at the London premiere of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood on Tuesday.
The 55-year-old movie icon looked like a silver fox in a black suit. Lena’s dazzling dress was unique and original. She was dressed to the nines in a fabulous feathered, orange-sequined dress. The Girls actress paired her look with black strappy platform heels.
Castmate Leonardo DiCaprio glanced at the pair as they kissed. However, he, unlike Brad, did not interact with Lena as she stood just a few feet in front of him.
While the smooch seems to be platonic, both Lena and Brad are reportedly single. Lena called it quits with musician Jack Antonoff in 2017, and Brad famously divorced Angelina Jolie in 2016.
According to The Daily Mail, the co-stars were often seen talking on the Los Angeles set of the latest Quentin Tarantino film. While filming, the two seemingly became good friends.
People reported the Moneyball star was in attendance of Lena’s 33rd birthday and celebration of her sobriety. On Instagram, the writer and director revealed she previously canceled parties because she felt uncomfortable spending an entire night celebrating herself.
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It’s not every day I get to wear a mumu, go barefoot, flirt with #BradPitt, and join a cult… as a job. Today #OnceUponATimeInHollywood comes out. Get thee to the theater to see this gem of cinematic history. More @onceinhollywood fun facts up in my stories. ⭐️
“This year I’m… wait for it… happy. And so grateful for where I am, who I am, and everyone who has helped me on my journey to health & sobriety. 32 was good to me, and for 33 I wanted to say a big old thank you,” she explained in a lengthy Instagram post.
Lena’s party was held in benefit of Friendly House, which is a recovery house for women. At the event, Brad was reportedly spotted hugging the birthday girl.
During takes of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Lena was photographed lifting up her dress and showing Brad Pitt her underwear, noted E! News. The actress explained the situation to Jimmy Kimmel, noting it was much more innocent than it appeared.
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She rose like a phoenix from the ashes, bitches… and ended up in London. ???????????? #onceuponatimeinhollywood
“We were talking about kewpie dolls…. It’s like an illustrated character of the 1920s. Someone asked, ‘What’s a kewpie doll?’ I said, ‘Well, I can show you. I’ve got one right here on my side’…If you’ve got it illustrated on your body, who are you not to show this?” said the 33-year-old.
To see more of Lena and Brad, be sure to watch Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, out now in theaters.