EastEnders’ Clair Norris in tears as she recalls name-calling over weight in Panorama docApril 22, 2022
EastEnders star Clair Norris broke down in tears in a new documentary this week as she remembered being bullied for her weight when she was younger.
The actress, known for playing Bernadette Taylor in the BBC soap, lead her first Panorama special on Wednesday as she discussed the UK’s obesity issue.
As the conversation turned to bullying, Clair recalled the “name-calling” she faced during her childhood when she returned to her primary school in Thamesmead, though she didn’t remember the specific moments she was teased for weight.
“This is probably where the name-calling would have happened, I don’t say it’s bullying that’s my own personal thing,” the 24 year old said.
"I don't remember specific names, I don't remember it clearly, but I suppose if it happens every day it just kinda blurs into one. My mum will remember more."
Clair became emotional in the documentary afterwards as she sat down with her mum, who recalled her daughter being bullied and how she would accept the name-calling at the time.
“You thought it was normal to be called "chubby". You didn't even see it as bullying,” she said.
"It wasn't until other people pointed it out, and they were like 'but they're calling her this' and you were like, 'yeah they call me chubby but that is just their nickname for me.’”
Clair then started crying as she heard about how she had blocked out being bullied, causing her mum to tear up as she reached over to her daughter.
“You never thought that was an issue and you thought it was OK for people to call you names, and you just accepted it,” her mum said.
Clair later admitted that she would “eat [her] feelings” as she spoke about her previous eating habits being tied to her mental health issues.
She mentioned in the documentary that she used to eat certain foods as a way to release her frustrated feelings at the time, as a coping mechanism to deal with her emotions.
“What I've discovered is that mental health does play a big part and I don't think I even realised, it wasn't me just going home eating food, that wasn't me just eating it was me getting out my stress and my anger,” Clair said.
"Eat my feelings, eat my feelings, they'll go away.”
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