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Culture

Chrissy Teigen's artful and genuine apology letter is a master class on second chances

Chrissy Teigen's artful and genuine apology letter is a master class on second chances
via Walt Disney Company / Flickr

Chrissy Teigen was once known as the "Mayor of Twitter" for her savage, hilarious, and refreshingly honest takes on the social media platform.

However, the tool that brought her so much love and adulation has nearly led to her undoing.

Last month, model and singer Courtney Stodden (who uses gender-neutral pronouns) revealed Teigen had repeatedly told them to kill themself via direct message. In addition to saying things like, "I can't wait for you to die," Stodden claims the model also told her to "Go. To. Sleep. Forever."

Teigen also said they should "take a dirt nap" in a public-facing tweet.


The "Lip Sync Battle" star also said some cruel things to Lindsay Lohan after she admitted to cutting herself, remarking that she probably "adds a few more slits to her wrists when she sees Emma Stone."

"Project Runway" star Michael Costello and Teen Mom star Farah Abraham have also accused Teigen of bullying.

After the bullying scandal broke, Macy's canceled her Cravings by Chrissy cookware line. The backlash was so strong that many, including Teigen, thought she had been canceled.

She apologized to Stodden on Twitter in May.


On Monday, Teigen gave a lengthy and impassioned response to the scandal on Medium. It seems like she's genuinely upset about her behavior and deserving of the public's forgiveness.

There are three important aspects of her apology that make it so effective. She shows genuine remorse, proves that she's learned something from the ordeal, and hopes to use the situation to become a better role model to her children.

"I know I've been quiet, and lord knows you don't want to hear about me, but I want you to know I've been sitting in a hole of deserved global punishment, the ultimate 'sit here and think about what you've done.' Not a day, not a single moment has passed where I haven't felt the crushing weight of regret for the things I've said in the past," she wrote.

"There is simply no excuse for my past horrible tweets," she continued. "My targets didn't deserve them. No one does. Many of them needed empathy, kindness, understanding and support, not my meanness masquerading as a kind of casual, edgy humor."

"I was a troll, full stop," she admitted. "And I am so sorry."

She then dove deep into her frame of mind around the time that she was bullying people.

"In reality, I was insecure, immature and in a world where I thought I needed to impress strangers to be accepted. If there was a pop culture pile-on, I took to Twitter to try to gain attention and show off what I at the time believed was a crude, clever, harmless quip. I thought it made me cool and relatable if I poked fun at celebrities," she wrote.

She admits that she felt she could troll fellow celebrities because she didn't see them as human.

"I wasn't just attacking some random avatar, but hurting young women — some who were still girls — who had feelings," she wrote. "How could I not stop and think of that? Why did I think there was some invisible psycho-celebrity formula that prevents anyone with more followers from experiencing pain? How did I not realize my words were cruel? What gave me the right to say these things?"

Here's the important part. Teigen has changed over the last ten years and that matters. We live in a world where people are often cast aside for things they've done years ago and nobody affords them the opportunity to change.

We all deserve a little grace in our lives and the opportunity to do better. People shouldn't be defined by their worst moments.

"The truth is, I'm no longer the person who wrote those horrible things," she wrote. "I grew up, got therapy, got married, had kids, got more therapy, experienced loss and pain, got more therapy and experienced more life. AND GOT MORE THERAPY."

She also hopes the scandal will help her become a better role model for her two children.

"My goal is to be so good that my kids will think this was all a fairy tale," Teigen joked. "Not the fake good. The good that has the best intentions, the good who wakes up wanting to make her friends, family, her team and fans as happy as possible. The good who will still f-ck up in front of the world but rarely, and never not growing only more good from it."

Teigen ends the open letter with a small wish that should be granted.

"I won't ask for your forgiveness, only your patience and tolerance. I ask that you allow me, as I promise to allow you, to own past mistakes and be given the opportunity to seek self-improvement and change," she wrote.



This story first appeared on the author's Medium and is reprinted here with permission.

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