Oxygen's upcoming series, My Big Fat Revenge, gives a voice to women who have been tormented by people for being overweight throughout their lives. These women are finally ready to get fit and get payback on those who hurt them. We chatted with Jennifer Tippie, whose boyfriend ridiculed and eventually left her because of her size. Read about what motivated Jennifer to take back control of her life in this Q&A.
What made you want to be on the show?
I wanted to be on the show to lose weight! I've never been a confrontational person and going through with the actual revenge portion was one of the hardest things I've ever done. But in the end the revenge made me face a longtime fear and gave me an indescribable sense of empowerment. It was a blessing in disguise.
What might have held you back from losing weight before?
I can think of a million excuses, but in the end it boils down to lack of knowledge, and an inability to believe in myself and what I was capable of. I didn't honestly believe I could do it, or that I was worthy of that kind of accomplishment, so I let myself be content with being fat and unhappy. It wasn't until the show, when my wonderful trainer, Steven Maresca, pushed me out of my comfort zone and proved to me that I was capable, that I started to believe I could do this, and that I deserved it.
Were you nervous to have your insecurities displayed on TV?
I still am! I mean, I let it all hang out... I didn't hold anything back when I was doing my initial interviews and there was some pretty deep and emotional stuff that came out. I'm just hoping that people see it as me really seeking help and being honest about my experience. I didn't want to hold back because I wanted to put my whole heart into this experience and I'm glad I did because I think that me doing so is the reason why I got the results that I did.
What’s some positive qualities about yourself that you wished people focused on instead of criticizing you for your weight?
I've always been told how genuine and sweet I am. Even my ex, whom I brought on the show, could attest to this. In fact, any of my exes, friends or family members would say this about me. I never really believed it before. I saw it as me just being quiet and shy because I was so self conscious about my weight, but looking back at the things I've done for people and how I treat others I guess those are a couple qualities about me that resonate with people. If people had seen this about me instead of judging me for my size, I guess life would have turned out differently, but it doesn't bother me because I am who I am based on the life I've lived and the people who have come in and out of it. For the first time in my life I can honestly say I am happy with who I am, and where I am going.
Be sure to watch Jennifer on the premiere of My Big Fat Revenge, September 3 at 9/8c!