The Fame Monster: Josie CunninghamPosted: April 20, 2014
It’s been less than a month since I last wrote about Josie Cunningham, the woman who gained notoriety after having a boob job done on the NHS. On the last update in the Josie saga, she had fallen pregnant with two candidates for the father- a friend she had casual sex with or one of the clients she met after becoming a £1000 a night escort. You can read the whole Josie saga by clicking on her tag at the top of this post.
So why am I writing about Josie again (this’ll be her 6th appearance on this blog) so soon after the announcement of her pregnancy? Well, quite simply because she’s managed to land herself in the public eye in a much bigger way than she has since the initial boob job, and was actually trending on Twitter today.
The reason for this is because Josie has appeared in the Sunday Mirror, announcing that she plans to abort the baby in order to pursue her career, having been approached to appear in the next series of Celebrity Big Brother.
Understandably this is has caused quite a ruckus online, with people kicking off and firing angry messages towards Miss Cunningham. Abortion is a massively divisive issue and will also hit a lot of folks in a personal and sensitive place.
Personally, I’m pro-choice. A woman’s body is her own and if Josie thinks her life will be better without this baby, then it’s her decision. In fact, I’m gonna say I think she’s making the right choice, because if she has this baby she’s going to feel slightly resentful that it deprived her of her big shot at fame.
And I doubt this is unusual, I’m sure many women have had abortions because it might effect their career, they just usually do it on the quiet and so nobody knows. Also, as another article on the Mirror’s website points out, the judgements have more to do with her chosen “career”. Again, I know I’m pro-choice but I honestly don’t see why this reason for an abortion is seen as worse than any other. The mother is the person who has to live with the child and the consequences, so it’s not really the place of Joe Public to say why they should or shouldn’t be allowed to have an abortion.
The feedback on Twitter that I’ve seen seems a tad daft too. Some state that Josie would be a terrible mother (if you feel that way you don’t want her to have a kid, do you?) or else telling her to go kill herself or wishing her dead (I know I’m only a first year nursing student, but I think if the mum dies the kid goes too?)
In fact, I’m gonna say I think she’s making the right choice, because if she has this baby she’s going to feel slightly resentful that it deprived her of her big shot at fame. Which won’t help either one of them.
Because that’s what this is all about. Josie wants to be famous, and I can’t judge her for that. A lot of folks want to be, you only have to see the parade of hopefuls who turn up to audition for X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent and Big Brother. It’s a widespread belief, hell, even I have my dreams of stardom, and given what I know about Josie’s life it makes sense.
This is a young woman who about a year ago was a single mother of two who felt insecure about her body. Of course to someone like Josie the life of a celebrity like Katie Price is going to look appealing- wealth, glamour and let’s not forget that for a while Katie Price was lauded in the media (she was “Mum of the Year” in 2007 and 2012, and Cosmopolitan’s woman of the year in ’07 and consistently praised for her smarts in playing the fame game).
Josie, who was extremely flat chested which she states was “ruining her life” probably looked at Jordan’s ascent to stardom with envy and longing. She got the boob job which helped address her body issues and it’s no surprise she viewed this as an opportunity to begin a career which would see her become “the next Katie Price”.
Of course, the NHS boobs meant this started under a bit of a cloud (again, I differ from widespread belief here in that I think if her lack of breasts was causing distress and negatively impacting her emotional health it should have been addressed, and there are worse things our taxes have been spent on than a boob job to help someone feel better about themselves), but she did her best to play the controversy to her advantages.
So Josie’s lust for the spotlight isn’t surprising, or extraordinary, she is a product of our modern, celebrity-obsessed culture. Josie wants to famous, and like Katie Price and countless others has no talent to set her apart from the pack and so is using her surgically enhanced body to further this goal.
Personally, and I don’t know anything about Josie beyond her interviews and tweets, I don’t think Josie would benefit from fame. She appears to be a woman beset by insecurities and has already became a magnet for some extremely harsh abuse online, and the more attention she receives is probably just going to exacerbate this.
There’s a poll on the Mirror site where about 92% of people have stated that they’ll boycott BB if Cunningham appears after getting an abortion. But they won’t will they? If anything, having the abortion has made Josie even more attractive to the show’s producers. She’ll go into the house riding a storm of controversy, which’ll draw more attention to the show and the mystery surrounding the Premier League footballer she’s bedded will also add more to her story, and unfortunately, Josie also presents the possibility for meltdown and/or train wreck that these shows thrive on.
Part of wants every post I write about Josie to be the last, and for her to find a way to live happily away from the media, but at the same time I am oddly fascinated with her. I knew something was coming when she got into a Twitter spat with Nicola McLean, who called her a slag. A recent tweet from Josie about a decision she needed to make suddenly made sense and I braced for her to catch some flak, but the extent has caught me by surprised.
I hope that it all works out for Josie, I don’t see her as anywhere near as vile or evil as some commentators appear to, and like I said, I’m oddly fascinated, I’d actually love to meet her, have a sit down and do a proper in depth interview/discussion with her, just to find out more about how she feels and her motivations. Chances of that are slim, but if it happened I’d try and be balanced and understanding, which a lot of the coverage I’ve seen so far hasn’t been.
Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.