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#pounditMonday, November 29, 2021

Simone Biles blames sexism for making her mental issues worse

Simone Biles

Simone Biles’ Tokyo Olympics did not go at all as expected.

Biles entered the 2020 Summer Olympics as the favorite to win gold medals in multiple gymnastics events, just as she had done at the 2016 Olympics in Rio. Instead, she ended up with two medals, and withdrawing from four competitions, citing mental health issues.

Biles did not have an easy time, but was proud of herself for rallying to win a bronze medal on the balance beam.

After winning the bronze medal at the conclusion of her games, Biles gave an interview to NBC’s Mike Tirico. She discussed her mental issues during the interview.

Tirico asked Biles how hard it is to be labeled the greatest gymnast of all time and have to prove it time and time again. Biles then gave an odd response where she invoked sexism.

“I feel like it’s hard, but it’s harder being a female athlete,” Biles said. “Everybody prays for your downfall and wants you to mess up and all that stuff.”

Seriously, I have to ask where Biles is getting this from. Where is her proof that people are praying for her downfall? Moreover, where is her proof that these supposed haters are hoping to see her fail more than they hope to see male athletes fail? Worse yet, why would she even think people want her to fail, much less be concerned with these unimportant opinions?

Biles entered the Tokyo Olympics as a beloved figure. She was painted by NBC as one of the faces of the Olympics. She was deemed by many the greatest gymnast ever, heavily hyped, and people were excited to see her greatness in action once again.

What on earth would make her think people want to see her fail because she is a woman, and what would even make her concerned with this? If she is concerned about people wanting her to fail, that could be the root of some of her mental issues. She’s a world-class athlete and should not be concerned about anyone’s opinion, except for maybe her coaches, family, and teammates.

She seems to be convinced that she is a victim because she is a female. She should instead view herself as an incredibly talented and blessed individual who is pursuing greatness and cannot be stopped. If the best gymnast ever thinks she is a victim of what people who do not matter think about her performances, then she needs to completely regroup about her mental process. She needs to stay off social media, stay away from media consumption, and block all that out. Because none of it matters.

Biles further emphasized with Tirico that she wants people to see her as a vulnerable victim.

“And I don’t think they take into consideration our mental health,” Biles said. “Because what we do isn’t easy. At the end of the day, we’re not just athletes or entertainment; we’re human too and we have emotions and feelings and things that we’re working through behind the scenes that we don’t tell you about.”

If I had four Olympic gold medals, I’d want people to view me as a great athlete who rose to become the best performer in my sport during the highest level of competition. It’s odd that Biles instead is so desperate for people, whose opinions do not matter, to recognize how much she overcomes day-to-day in order to achieve her heights. Does she think people think it’s easy to do what she does? They don’t, which is why they are so impressed when she wins multiple medals at the Olympics.

Biles has everything backwards if she is viewing herself as a victim and feeling that people want to see her fail because they are sexist. That sort of thinking impairs performance rather than improves it.

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