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Sam Smith, who has been open about his struggles with body image issues, revealed in a new interview that aired Friday that he had liposuction when he was just 12 years old.
The comments came during the singer-songwriter’s appearance on Jameela Jamil's new Instagram show, I Weigh Interviews, in which Smith described body image issues as “the basis of all my sadness.”
“Literally everything I’ve ever been sad about is my weight,” Smith said. “I struggle with it every day.”
Smith, 26, shot to fame with his Grammy-winning 2014 debut, In the Lonely Hour, which included hits “Stay With Me,” “Money On My Mind,” and “I’m Not the Only One.” The singer has enjoyed continued success, including for his Oscar and Golden Globe winning theme song to Spectre-the 2015 James Bond entry. But he has also been open about his struggles with his body image, noting that he has had difficulty accepting his fluctuating weight throughout his youth and career.
In the interview with Jamil, the actress and body positivity activist, Smith says that he was teased as a child for “holding a lot of weight in my chest,” and in a particularly “horrible” incident had his “breasts” grabbed by another boy on the playground.
“I had liposuction. I was 12 years old,” Smith said. “At the time, I think I was very happy about it. It didn’t really change anything. I think I put the weight back on in two weeks because I haven’t figured out my relationship with food, so it didn’t really change anything. But being 12 years old and having liposuction on your chest is quite a big deal.”
While Smith says in the interview that he gets “very, very dark” sometimes, he told Jamil that has “recently been able to get out of those holes a bit quicker”-at least in part because he started therapy in the last year.
Smith also opened up in the interview about his non-binary gender identity, telling Jamil that he has considered getting a sex change in the past but that learning more about his genderqueer identity has been revelatory.
“Maybe I’m not a man, maybe I’m not a woman-maybe I’m just me,” Smith said. “And maybe that’s okay.”