Sadly, it seems like Instagram is becoming less of a place to check out curated brunch photos and more of a place where women are monitored for their "behavior." Just this week, a professional cheerleader was fired from her team after sharing a one-piece lingerie photo on the social media app. And now, something similar has happened to a college volleyball player, who was "body shamed" by her coach over her Instagram page.
Shalom Ifeanyi, 19, was allegedly kicked off her college volleyball team for sharing a too-revealing photo showing off her "big chest."
Molly Alvey, the University of Cincinnati's women's volleyball coach, is accused by Ifeanyi of body shaming and discrimination. The student explained she “harasse[d] and shame[d]” her from January to June 2017 regarding photos posted to her Instagram account, which Alvey called “too sexy."
Ifeanyi's coach reportedly sent screenshots of the "inappropriate" photos, asking her to take them down.
The photos, according to screenshots of the conversation that are circulating, show no nudity whatsoever. Instead, it's just the 19-year-old in a black tank top. Via text, Ifeanyi responded: “Ok Coach However I feel like I’m being body shamed because I’m not flat chested. I’m not trying to show my boobs coach, I can’t make them go away … There is a history of black women because of their bodies being sexualized and that’s what appears to be happening to me.”
In another face-to-face interaction, Alvey reportedly sat Ifeanyi down and said, "When the football players see this, what do you think they see? They see your breasts. It's seductive," regarding the photos.
The student athlete was allegedly shamed from the moment she was recruited to the volleyball team.
Ifeyani has since taken legal action against Coach Alvey. "Almost immediately upon her arrival on campus, Alvey began harassing and shaming [Ifeanyi] about pictures she was posting on her personal social media accounts," her filing states.
Even worse is the fact that the coach supposedly didn't tell other members of the team – who were of a "slighter build" and "lighter complexion" – to take photos down, despite some of them being two-piece bathing suit photos on Instagram.
A few days after the heated text message exchange, the athlete went into her coach's office to learn she'd been kicked off the team.
"When [Ifeanyi] asked if her dismissal had anything to do with her text response the prior week, Alvey indicated that she read it, but would not discuss it further and offered no other reason for this devastating action," the lawsuit reads.
The student then filed a Title IX complaint, but her university failed to complete the investigation within a nine-month time period. Though she's still receiving her 2017-2018 scholarship, it won't continue into the next school year. "As a direct and proximate result of [Alvey and McKinley's] unlawful conduct, [Ifeanyi] has lost her athletic scholarship, will be forced to pay for the remainder of her college education on her own, and has lost earning capacity due to the delay and disruption in her education," the document reads.
Ifeyani is waiting to hear which damages she's able to benefit from in the lawsuit.