Global BC Meteorologist Kristi Gordon has a few words for the haters after she received a disgusting letter criticizing her pregnant body.
On Thursday evening, Gordon, along with Global BC’s Robin Stickley and Squire Barnes, addressed some of the mean letters and comments she has received since her belly began to grow three or four weeks ago. Most notable was one anonymous hand-written letter that lambasted her growing belly and criticized her maternity wardrobe.
“Nowhere on North America TV have we seen a weather reader so gross as you,” the letter reads, “Your front end looks like the Hindenburg, and your rear end looks like a brick [fill-in-the-blank] house. We now turn off Global.”
Gordon goes on to read several other comments directed at her, including “buy some decent clothes and have more respect for you unborn child”, “you’re not the first pregnant woman. OMG” and “looser tops would look much more professional”.
During her first pregnancy, Gordon experienced similar criticisms. When announcing her second pregnancy, Gordon asked viewers to be nice about her wardrobe. But, apparently, not all viewers heard the memo.
For Gordon, the issue of hurtful comments isn’t one she has much experience with.
“I rarely get mean emails and notes. People are pretty supportive on a regular basis,” she told Vancity Buzz in an interview. Though, the comments always seem to roll in once her belly, understandably visible on-air when she does the News Hour weather report, begins to grow with pregnancy.
“Last time I was pregnant, as my belly got bigger, I got more and more notes from people wanting me to cover up or wanting me to take time off, or people not being happy having to see a larger woman on TV, I guess.”
She says she started receiving mean comments about three to four weeks ago when her belly really began to show.
“There’s something about showing the belly that is sort of kicking off some kind of response in people. I’m finding I get most of my comments when I’m wearing something like a sweater that fits underneath my belly. People don’t like to see that.”
Gordon doesn’t have a problem with people not approving of her clothing, but she does find the extent some people go to make her hear their disapproval alarming.
When she received the hand-written letter two days ago, she was shocked that someone had actually taken the time to write the letter, find the Global BC address and mail it. “It was just so rude,” she said.
Though she says she is not hurt by the letter, it did affect her in a surprising way.
“I wasn’t really affected until I lay down at night and I realized that I was just sort of off. I had asked my husband, ‘Am I not seeing it? Can you be really honest and let me know? What do I look like?’” Gordon’s sudden awareness of her size also made her think about exercising more and eating less.
“I thought maybe I should try to fit in another work out into my week, but it’s really tough right now. I work full-time, I have a three year-old, and fitting it all in… I’m tired. It’s not exactly on my priority list right now.”
When she started to think about watching more carefully what she eats, she realized the letter had gotten to her. With three months left to go in her pregnancy, Gordon already weighs as much as she did throughout her last pregnancy. “I know that I’ve gained a lot more weight than I did last time. So that sort of weighs on you.”
“It sinks in,” she says. “And I think I’m a pretty strong person. So if it’s sinking in with me, imagine how some people feel. That kind of struck a chord with me.”
Before Gordon realized how the letter had warped her thinking, she and her fellow reporters were having a good time laughing the letter off. Of particular note was the author’s misspelling of ‘Global’ into ‘Globel’.
“You have to laugh at that. I look like the Hindenberg? Come on, that’s kind of funny.”
But what isn’t funny is the ‘overwhelming’ amount of emails and messages Gordon has received since the video was posted. Without dismissing the kind words of friends and viewers, she believes some people need the kindness more.
“I almost would say to someone ‘Hey thank you, I’m good though. Say something nice to the person next to you.’”
Gordon’s attitude regarding the comments is anything but resentful. Admitting that she herself has moments where she wants to lash out, she understands that some people can’t hold it in.
Referring to the online trolls or mean-spirited letter-writers, Gordon says: “I think that they are some people who are angry or not happy with the way things are going in their lives, and they get irritated when they see someone who is happy, and they want to lash out at them and bring them down. Unfortunately, I don’t know if it’s jealousy or anger or resentment, that some people want to do that to others.”
And if they feel so strongly that they need to mail in a letter, Gordon believes Global BC is better off without their viewership. She also states that she won’t be covering up or taking time off, but she will keep doing the job she loves.
As for why she and her News Hour team felt they needed to discuss the letter on-air, Gordon was happy to start a conversation around the issue of pregnant women in the workplace.
“I’m not the first person who has been on TV pregnant. I’m not the first person this has happened to. But it’s something to bring up and have a conversation about, and bring awareness to how some pregnant women are still being perceived in the workplace.
“People look at pregnant women, when they get a bit round and awkward, and just say ‘Ah, go be a mom. Just take time off.” Well, hold on a second. I have a career that I want. I’m trying my best to find clothing, but let’s be honest, we’re not going to spend a tonne of money on clothing that we’ll only wear for six months. You try and make do with what you have. Half the time you’re just uncomfortable and you’d rather be wearing muumuu.”
Gordon will continue to report the weather on Global BC’s 6 o’clock News Hour until her second child makes his or her arrival.
Kristi Gordon responds to haters criticizing her pregnancy wardrobe: