Billie Eilish isn't just famous for her powerful vocals. The 18-year-old is known for her edgy, loose-fitting outfits, which are pretty unique for a pop singer her age. But despite wearing clothes that cover up her body, she still gets shamed for her choice of attire. Now, she's opening up about that body shaming in her new spoken-word short film, Not My Responsibility.
The video, which was shared on YouTube on May 26, shows Eilish in a dark-lit room while a background melody plays. The camera pans around the singer as her monologue begins. “Do you know me, really know me? You have opinions about my opinions, about my music, about my clothes, about my body," she says. "Some people hate what I wear, some people praise it. Some people use it to shame others. Some people use it to shame me."
"But I feel you watching, always," she continues. "Nothing I do goes unseen, so while I feel your stares, your disapproval, or your sigh of relief, if I lived by them, I’d never be able to move. Would you like me to be smaller, weaker, softer, taller? Would you like me to be quiet?"
"We make assumptions about people based on their size. We decide who they are. We decide what they’re worth,” she says. “If I wear more, if I wear less—who decides what that makes me? What that means? Is my value based only on your perception? Or is your opinion of me not my responsibility?”
Eilish first shared the short film back in March during her set on the opening night of her Where Do We Go? World Tour in Miami, according to UK newspaper The Guardian. But the body shaming began long before the video's release. In a BBC interview in February, she explained that she had to stop reading her Instagram comments because they put her mental health at risk.
"It was ruining my life....It's way worse than it’s ever been right now," she told the BBC during the interview. "It's weird, the cooler the things you get to do are, the more people hate you. It’s crazy."
Just 24 hours after it was released, Eilish's powerful video has racked up over one million views on YouTube—along with thousands of comments about the message she's sending and the importance of standing up for herself. The singer has yet to comment on all the attention from the clip, but clearly she's using her platform to make a statement about body positivity and self-love.
To get our top stories delivered to your inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter