Teddi Mellencamp took to Instagram on Friday to share a throwback pic and a positive message about beauty and self-worth, recalling a time when she was body shamed while trying to find work as an actress.
The 38-year-old Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star and daughter of musician John Mellencamp posted a 1999 head shot of herself and recalled how she moved to Los Angeles after high school, at age 17, and worked jobs at the prestigious talent group Creative Artists Agency and at a restaurant to make ends meet and to network as she pursued her dream.
"I had big dreams of becoming an actress (original, I know)," she said. "During the day I worked in the CAA mailroom; the evenings as a restaurant hostess. I shared a studio apartment with a girl I met in acting class. After about a year meeting anyone I could, I finally signed with a manager and started auditioning. When I got a callback for a pilot, I thought my life was about to change. And while yes, this moment did change my life forever, it wasn't in the way I expected."
"Because when casting called my manager to tell them they loved me but wanted to talk about me losing 20lbs..." she said. "I was angry. Heartbroken. Embarrassed. I carried that chip on my shoulder until I learned how to turn it into positivity."
So if anybody has put you down, made you feel less-than, or has you questioning your self-worth, I'm here to tell you: You are beautiful. You are smart. And you are worth feeling your very best. #fbf #1999."
Teddi's acting dream just recently came true; she will make her big screen debut in Next Level, a teen dance drama film set for release in September.
In July, Teddi got candid about her weight struggles, revealing that she battled obesity in the past.
"I remember having to step on the scale at the doctor— and the tears when the doc said, 'Teddi, you're 5'3" and over 200lbs,'" she wrote at the time. "The me in that picture would do extreme fad diets, lose a bunch of weight and then gain it all back again."
"Now, going into my 38th year with four years of consistent commitment to my lifestyle," she wrote. "Four years I have been All IN— no yo-yo. And even when I do get a little ‘wild' (for instance, you may have seen me on #RHOBH in Provence), I have the tools to reel it back in rather than letting myself unravel for week's worth of choices that don't work for me."