Anthony Bowens: ‘I Had Body Dysmorphia’
Professional wrestler Anthony Bowens has opened up about his struggle with body dysmorphia.
The athlete, born in Nutley, New Jersey, who came out as bisexual last year, said he was inspired to bulk up after being picked on at school for his skinny frame and scars left by the removal of birthmark-like lesions caused by a skin condition.
In a cover interview with Attitude magazine, Anthony Bowens told the publication: “I guess there were times where I would look in the mirror and … I think I had a bit of body dysmorphia.
Body dysmorphia, occasionally still called dysmorphophobia, is a mental disorder characterized by the obsessive idea that some aspect of one’s own appearance is severely flawed and warrants exceptional measures to hide or fix it.
“I would be happy with myself, but I would always feel that I need to be that little bit bigger.
“At one point I would be eating seven meals a day and lifting a lot heavier, which was probably bad for my joints, and I eventually got up to 220lbs.”
On being bullied he added: “I think subconsciously I realized that as I got bigger people would start to, not respect me more, but just lay off me, divert their attention to somebody else.
“Because just my physical appearance would make them wary of messing with me.”
Anthony Bowens also told the magazine he first realized in high school he was attracted to both men and women.
“I was sitting at a table and a couple were walking down the street and I was like ‘Wow that girl’s beautiful’.
“Then I noticed that I was also looking to see who she was holding hands with, and I was like ‘That guy’s kind of attractive too’.”
– Attitude magazine is out on Thursday.
© Press Association 2018