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Laverne Cox's hardest year yet

Laverne Cox. Picture: Instagram

Laverne Cox. Picture: Instagram

Published Feb 15, 2021


Laverne Cox has found being alone during the coronavirus lockdown really tough because she's so hard on herself.

The “Promising Young Woman” actress initially saw the coronavirus lockdown periods as a “spiritual opportunity” but has struggled because she’s so hard on herself and regularly berated herself with “vicious, cruel” remarks.

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She said: “I remember thinking, ‘This is a spiritual opportunity.’ Ha! Oh Laverne, you’re so full of it! Turns out it was the hardest year of my life. When I’m alone I can be really hard on myself.

“I’ve caught myself saying the most atrocious things to myself, things I would never say if I was out in the world. ‘You’re so ugly…’ Vicious, cruel things. Things that, if I said them to a child, then the child would be taken away from me. But, we all have a child inside us, so…”

The 48-year-old star knows she “deserves so much better” than the way she treats herself but still can’t help “shaming” herself for her flaws.

She continued: “I can’t bear how cruel I’ve been to that little girl. It’s not fair to her – she deserves so much better.

“It’s so hard for me not to blame her, not to shame her when she hasn’t been perfect.

“So this ‘spiritual opportunity’ is confronting how cruel I’ve been to myself. I’ve known how hard I can be on myself for about 10 years, but I can only say it now.”

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Laverne’s self-cruelty stemmed from an acting class she took a decade ago.

She recalled to Observer magazine: “10 years ago in an acting class the teacher had me take on the persona of the bitchiest queen from ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ and then have me ‘read myself’, externalising my negative self-talk in front of the class. When he said ‘cut’ I broke down in tears. And then he had me do it for eight weeks in a row.”

And the ‘Orange is the New Black’ star is a perfectionist in a bid to stay “safe”.

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She said: “It comes from a shameful place. I think this’ll keep me safe. I think perfectionism will keep me from being judged, or harmed. It’s self-protection.

“But, unfortunately bad stuff still happens if you’re perfect. Me being visible is not keeping trans people from being murdered. So… I need to be gentler. Sometimes I manage.”

Laverne tries to counter being tough on herself with positive affirmations.

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She said: “This sounds so corny…I stand by the mirror and say, ‘You’re so amazing.’

“I say, ‘You got through that, that’s incredible. So many people are still struggling in ways you don’t struggle any more. You’ve accomplished so much, you’ve grown so much. So many trans people have said their lives are better because of you.’

“I stand in the mirror and say, ‘Laverne, you should be so proud.’ "

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