Mama June Shannon is publicly transforming her body. She's currently starring on "Mama June: From Not to Hot," a reality television show that's following her through bariatric surgery and multiple plastic surgeries, including a tummy tuck and skin removals.
She's dramatically gone from a size 18 to a size four — and her transformation photos are flooding the internet. Stories like "flaunting her 150-pound weight loss" and "her dramatic weight loss is revealed" are everywhere, but apparently, her motivation for losing the weight has been forgotten.
Her personal motivation for undergoing multiple surgeries is sadder than sad.
Mama June slimmed down so she could upstage her ex-husband at his wedding.
Her 84-pound weight loss is not for her health or her own comfort. Instead, she had invasive surgery to appeal to a man who admitted to cheating on her on national TV.
She revealed her warped motivation to her physical trainer, Kenya Crooks, in the March 10 episode of the WE tv series.
"I'm trying to lose weight for Sugar Bear’s wedding because my ex is getting married," she said. "I'm trying to rebrand myself as like the skinnier Mama June."
She also told Crooks that she wants to be "the hottest thing at this wedding."
Breakups, especially those that are navigated publicly, should inspire people to work on themselves emotionally and mentally. However, attaching her physical appearance to her post-breakup happiness — and doing it on reality TV — proves she isn't losing weight for the right reasons.
There's nothing wrong with losing weight.
Many plus-size women undergo bariatric surgery to lose weight. For instance, model Rosie Mercado lost 210 pounds after a flight attendant embarrassed her for being unable to fit into a seat.
However, "revenge bodies" aren't rooted in the betterment of self. The idea that Sugar Bear's gaze and approval matters more than self-acceptance isn't body positive.
It also should've been something her surgeons counseled her about before she went under the knife.
It's unclear if Mama June had off-camera conversations with her weight loss surgeon before undergoing the procedure.
However, a conversation about her mental state, her motivation for losing weight, or how she perceived her body wasn't publicly discussed.
There's much to be said about the exploitation of fat women's bodies for TV ratings, which is what appears to be happening with Mama June as well. "The Biggest Loser," "Khloé Kardashian's Revenge Body," and a multitude of other shows have capitalized on hatred of fat bodies.
For those watching, like Mama June's daughters, positively framing her weight loss is important.
That's not happening. She's losing weight for Sugar Bear. She's losing weight for television ratings. At what point is Mama June eating healthier and exercising for herself?
"At some point you have to make a conscientious decision to start putting yourself first," her trainer told her on the show after she expressed her real reasons for losing weight.
Dropping pounds is not a solution to a larger problem. "Not to Hot" has dropped the ball on that.