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Local eighth grader stars in body positivity video

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    CONTRIBUTED Local eighth grader Kaitlyn Teague recently took part in a “body positivity” online video, which currently can be watched at amazingmeselfesteem.com.
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Kaitlyn Teague, a local eighth grader, currently is starring in an online “body positivity” video that debuted last week. The 22-minute video is a collaboration between the Dove/Unilever corporation and Discovery Inc., the parent company of Cartoon Network.

In the video, Teague describes the hurdles that she’s cleared to become a positive and confident young woman. A production crew recently filmed at Teague’s home, capturing images of her fishing, playing with her dogs and bonding with her family in the kitchen.

As you can imagine, Teague’s mother is one proud momma.

“I’ll get emotional just thinking about it,” said Joelle Teague. “From being bullied in the third grade and coming home crying to where she is now, it’s like night-and-day. She is such a confident and happy person now.”

Joelle Teague says that her daughter “has always been on the bigger and healthier side.” In the video, Kaitlyn describes those challenges and how she overcame them.

“I didn’t feel like I was tall enough, pretty enough, skinny enough or that I would ever be liked by anybody,” she says in the video. “Society says that we should look like Barbie dolls…These messages can drive people to hate themselves.” In the video, however, Kaitlyn

In the video, however, Kaitlyn also describes how she changed her mindset to overcome those insecurities.

“(Negativity from others) is like a seed. If you give it water and give it sunlight, it’s going to start to grow, and you’re going to start to believe it’s true. You have to let those thoughts escape your mind.” Now, according to Joelle, Kaitlyn

Now, according to Joelle, Kaitlyn actually is the one who takes up for the kids who are being bullied and stops it at it source.

“My confidence has come with time and learning to love myself,” she says in the video.

The process began last spring when Joelle and Kaitlyn visited one of Kaitlyn’s teachers, Susan Curtis. Little did they know that Curtis’ husband, Glenn, worked in the film industry and was working on the body positivity project with Dove and Discovery. In that moment, Glen knew that he had the star of his video.

“They just really hit it off. The entire scenario just sort of came out of nowhere and by chance,” Joelle said.

The video can be viewed at www.amazingmeselfesteem.com.