Feeling pretty isn’t a job requirement for Lux, the host of 105.7 The Point radio show, but on occasions like PointFest she will take the opportunity to dress up, which she loves to do, knowing that video interviews quickly became an integral part of his work. . While the men at her station don jeans and a t-shirt for PointFest, Lux opts for something nicer — in this case, a tight pink dress and jacket, which complements her hair color.
There was no way to know the monochromatic outfit would draw any social media vitriol, but what started as a negative moment turned into an opportunity for mental health awareness.
When Lux posted a photo of herself on Facebook at the event, she left it unattended as she went about her day at work, interviewing bands like Shinedown and enjoying the event. As she came back to share the photo of her and Shinedown after their interview, she opened the comments section on the original post. The comments struck a chord.
A man had commented on her appearance – specifically her body and how “Jenny Craig called her.” When another commenter asked her for further explanation, another troll added “she’s letting herself go and needs to lose a few pounds”.
Lux’s scroll continued, this time with another man commenting on how far apart the radio personality’s eyes are and that she was “trying to show cleavage with below average A’s”.
“For some reason, the way the comments were presented really struck me in a way that told me I had to defend myself,” Lux said in an interview with the RFT. “If nothing else, to raise awareness that I’m one of millions of people dealing with this stuff and the damage it can really do. When you think you’re just making sarcastic or funny comments online, you have no idea what it does to the other person on the other side.
Lux has battled mental health issues and is recovering from an eating disorder. She lost a friend to suicide. Because of these experiences, the radio show host walked for years and raised money for the Missouri Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The comments hit as Lux prepares to walk again on September 26, further propelling her to draw attention to trolls.
“When people tell you these kinds of things, it adds up to low self-esteem, low self-confidence and low self-esteem, depressions, sadness, loneliness, anger – all those emotions that are risk factors for suicide,” Lux explains. “So I thought, ‘Well, I’m walking, I’m fundraising. And if nothing else, I also have to remind people that this kind of words weigh heavily. You don’t know where someone is, what they’re dealing with in their life. And, you know, even having a few a week can be really, really harmful.
The radio show personality says she gets about ten to twenty comments like this a week, but she couldn’t get rid of it for some reason.
As a target of trolling and harassment, she notes that the impact of these comments accumulates over time. “Your body always absorbs that kind of punch, that criticism, that grimace, that embarrassment, that shame, whatever it is,” she says.
Lux adds that while her male counterparts at the station have also been victims of body shaming, the sexism towards female appearances cannot be ignored. She credits her colleagues for providing a support system. Yet she finds that many people seem to view harassment as part of her job, or that she invites scrutiny of her body because she works in the media industry.
“The old expression ‘face for the radio’ comes from the fact that we weren’t used to being seen. So we didn’t really worry about that,” Lux laughs. “And now that I’m outside all the time, I enjoy it. I’m happy to use the platform to explore creativity and talk about causes that matter. »
The recent instances of body shaming she has shared publicly have been met with an outpouring of support from her fans and the band Shinedown. Lux turned the moment into an awareness of how these comments can affect people.
She drew her followers’ attention to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, an organization close to her heart, in posts about the upcoming march. CEO Robert Gabbia said in a press release that suicide awareness walks in which Lux actively participates can help turn “hope into action”. Last year, the walks raised $25 million for the foundation’s education and support programs.
The Missouri iteration of the walk, called Out of the Darkness and held virtually last year due to COVID-19, drew 1,255 participants and raised more than $180,000.
“We hope that by walking we will bring attention to this issue and prevent other families from suffering loss through suicide,” said Kellen Wolters, co-chair of the foundation’s Missouri chapter board, in A press release. “Our ultimate goal is to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide.”
The awareness mission is also played out in digital spaces. Instagram has become a place for Lux to speak candidly about her mental health struggles. After receiving the comments, she shared a TikTok video about her body-shaming experience on her platform – so far the video has attracted nearly 15,000 views and hundreds of comments on Instagram. She continues to sneer at the comments, a creative way not to stifle her feelings, she says.
##verify the first 3 minute videos, but body shaming is not tolerated here. Thanks @shinedown for yesterday’s chat! ##pointfest was always amazing!
♬ original sound – Lux
Making videos is just one way to deal with the impact of body shaming. Lux notes that “speaking out saves lives” is one of AFSP’s slogans, and that’s what she strives to do by being open on her platforms. For her, it’s making “silly” videos, but for others, it might be writing it. The goal is two-fold, Lux says, to express feelings, but also to talk about issues and “to feel comfortable and unashamed.”
Lux says she made the videos to address the situation publicly and “teach people to be kind.” When asked if trolls ever apologize, she replies that while it’s shocking, it does happen. She says sometimes they reach out to apologize and tell her that what they said sounded awful. Other times they try to explain what they meant.
“I love having these conversations,” Lux says. “It is more important than ever now that we allow ourselves to evolve. We’re all going to get into it. We are all going to stumble. We are all going to fall. We’re all going to make mistakes, but if you’re willing to admit it and make the effort to make that change, I think it takes guts, balls to get back into my DMs and be like, ‘You know what? It wasn’t cool.
Lux is taking part in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Walk on September 26. You can register to join the walk on the organization’s website and participate in Lac Creve Coeur from 12 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. or donate to the cause on supporting.afsp. org.
Follow Jenna on Twitter at @writesjenna. Email the author at [email protected]
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