Rosie O’Donnell returned to ABC’s The View this week weighing more than 50 pounds less than she did the last time she co-hosted the show back in 2007.
But it’s been an emotional adjustment for the star.
She suffered a heart attack in 2012 then earlier this year, underwent a vertical gastric sleeve procedure that helped her reach a healthier weight.
‘The fact that I look so different has been difficult and unexpected,’ she tells Salon.com.
‘Everyone assumes that obese people would just be jumping for joy that they were healthier and thinner and able to fit into store-bought sizes, we don’t have to go to the plus store. But it’s also filled with a lot of emotional turbulence, you wouldn’t expect.’
O’Donnell goes on to explain that ‘there are many issues for why people gain weight. Some gain weight as a layer of protection. To keep people away from them.’
That was the case with her.
‘I never wanted someone to want to approach me in a sexual manner because of my physical body because of child abuse issues,’ she says. ‘I think they are all interwoven and they don’t exist separately, so they come up, and I’m having to put out fires and talk to my therapist and get through it and find a different way to cope with my anxiety and my feelings of (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) rather than eating over them.’
O’Donnell’s return to The View and the introduction of two new co-hosts joining returning moderator Whoopi Goldberg led to the show’s highest ratings in eight years.