Pointless: Richard Osman compliments Armstrong on final show
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Pointless creator Richard Osman, 51, has revealed that comments about his 6 ‘7 height throughout his life have left him feeling “ashamed”. The House of Games host discussed how the “body shaming” he had been subjected to had affected him so much, he stopped going out in public.
The Thursday Murder Club author spoke about his experience on the Diary of a CEO podcast, where he admitted he was grateful that the term “body shaming” had come into common use, as he has had to deal with comments about his height his whole life.
Richard explained: “Because they’ve talked about my stature and I’ve felt ashamed. That’s body shaming. I would never have thought of it as that.
“I’m 6ft 7, which is too much is the truth. My height is something that people can always see. Recently people have started saying, ‘Oh, you mustn’t body shame.’
“And I thought, ’Well that’s interesting.’ Because body shaming is sort of something that certain people would say, ‘What a snowflake, talking about body shaming.’ But actually I think, ‘Yeah, that’s what you’re doing, that’s what people have done to me for the last 30 years – they’ve body shamed me.’”
Richard admitted that, while generally people are “perfectly nice” to him about his height, others can be “horrible”.
“So many people are lovely and chat, but then a couple of times a day there’s someone who wants to shout at you out of a window, or just wants to make you feel small ironically. And you just think, why?” he mused.
The TV presenter went on to point out that “being different” teaches people from a young age about the “hate that’s out there”.
Richard also said that he was made to feel “embarrassed” about his height and that the mean comments left him “not wanting to go out”.
He explained how he would often unintentionally block audience’s views at cinemas and gigs, meaning he would make an effort to sit at the back even though he has extremely poor eyesight.
“For me, if I go to a gig or the cinema it’s a nightmare, because I don’t want to be in front of anyone,” Richard said.
“I go out of my way to be as far back as possible, which when you can’t see it’s impossible. Or you’re going to sit in the aisle in the cinema,” he admitted.
The star has limited vision due to an eye cognition he suffers from called nystagmus.
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According to Great Ormond Street Hospital nystagmus is: “A rhythmical, repetitive and involuntary movement of the eyes.
“It is usually from side to side, but sometimes up and down or in a circular motion.
“Both eyes can move together or independently of each other. A person with nystagmus has no control over this movement of the eyes.”
Richard revealed that he had to deal with being very tall from a young age, reaching 6ft 2 by the time he was 17.
“It meant that I didn’t live the life I should have done for many years because I was sort of hiding away from things,” he reflected.
Richard also acknowledged those who experience micro-aggressions due to characteristics such as race or sexual orientation, admitting his experience was not the same as theirs.
“I’m not being discriminated against because of my height. But I do know that every single day of my life I’m reminded of it,” he said.
“Every single day just non-stop, and so I know that to be a person of colour, to be differently gendered, to be all of these things, I know that the microaggressions I get, you’re getting non-stop every day of your life, and in a much more harmful way.”
The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett is available on Apple podcasts and other streaming platforms.
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