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"It's hard not being in control of my body"

Tuesday 30 July 2013


From the UK's Daily Mail:


Jenny Lee
Jenny Lee on Oprah: Where Are They Now?

'It's hard not being in control of my body': Plastic surgery addict who has had 59 procedures on being forced to accept her looks after sudden weight gain

  • Jenny Lee appeared on Oprah in 2004, and talked about her obsession with plastic surgery after having had 26 procedures
  • Since then, she has had 33 more and been diagnosed with fibromyalgia - a chronic pain disorder that has caused her to gain weight

PUBLISHED: 21:07 GMT, 25 July 2013 | UPDATED: 21:18 GMT, 25 July 2013

A woman so addicted to plastic surgery that she's had 59 procedures has told how she still struggles with her obsession with beauty, especially after a recent weight gain.

Jenny Lee, who shocked Oprah and viewers with her Barbie-like looks in 2004, made an appearance seven years later on Oprah: Where Are They Now?, which will return for a new season on Sunday.

In the episode, the mother-of-two from Austin, Texas, opens up about learning to accept her body after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia, a painful disease that caused her to gain weight.

'Initially my self-esteem took a huge blow,' the blonde tells Oprah.

'I was just like, "Are you kidding me?" Because I look at some pictures. . . where I was really thin. But I was the healthiest and the happiest at that time, and I miss those days.'

Indeed, Jenny appears completely different in the episode, displaying a puffier face and noticeable weight gain.

'I had to really come to terms [with] the fact that for once in my life, I'm not in control of my body,' she confesses.

When she first met Oprah, the talk show host told her that she looked like Barbie - to which Jenny responded that she had always struggled with accepting her looks.

She talked about 'a battle' with her self-esteem that started when she was young, and which she hasn't been able to kick to this day.

I feel like my spirit was broken,' she says. 'And I'm trying very hard to find acceptance. But when I look in my reflection, I still don't like what I see.

'If I could be just OK with it, just OK, I would be very happy,' she added.

Jenny's dissatisfaction led to her getting 26 plastic surgeries by the time she was 28 years old, including three lip implants, two boob jobs, three breast lifts and liposuction.

After her first appearance on Oprah, Jenny and her husband had a baby, and she briefly kicked the surgery habit in order to be a more attentive mother.

But soon enough, she was back on the bandwagon and had undergone 33 more procedures - including a fourth rhinoplasty.

In the follow-up episode, Jenny says her final nose surgery, which took place in February 2008, was finally to her satisfaction. 'Now, I look at my nose and go. . . it's perfect!' she says.

But other events in her life have not gone according to plan - like her diagnosis with fibromyalgia, a disorder that makes sufferers feel chronic widespread pain.

'I am in constant pain, all the time, every day, 24 hours a day, seven days a week,' said Jenny, who cuts a noticeably fuller figure now, due to the disorder.

Still, while Jenny continues to struggle with her own body image issues, she has tried to make sure that her oldest daughter, Kaleigh, will never have to do the same.

'Where Kaleigh's concerned, I've always made it very clear that she needs nothing,' Jenny says in the episode.

'She's beautiful the way that she is and personally I would prefer that she don't do anything to change that.'

For her part, it seems Kaleigh has got the message. 'My appearance isn't too important,' she says.

'I don't think I'll be following in my mom's footsteps with plastic surgery. I just. . . at this time in my life, I really don't see anything wrong with me.'

One thing that has been a saving grace for Jenny during her body transformation is her husband's enduring acceptance.

'He's crazy madly in love with this Jenny,' she says, pointing to her new figure. 'Having that reassurance from him has made it a lot easier to deal with.'

The new season of Oprah: Where Are They Now? will air Sunday, July 18 at 10pm on OWN.


The above, with more photos, a video, and comments, originally appeared here.


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