'Called a fat s***': Ariel Winter on being fat-shamed as a teenager

PHOTO: Instagram/Arielwinter

Ariel Winter found it tough getting fat-shamed as a teenager.

The former Modern Family star experienced the negative side of fame as a young adult when she had to read mean comments about her weight gain and changing body shape, all of which occurred as she appeared on screen as Alex Dunphy in the hugely popular ABC sitcom.

In an upcoming interview for Red Table Talk: The Estefans — hosted by Emily and Lili Estefan and pop icon Gloria Estefan — Ariel said: "I got called a fat s*** when I was 13. That was rough. Because I gained weight and my body changed, I had to wear different outfits and I wore a dress that had a cut-out here. And the headlines were dark.

"Fat s*** was rough for me, and it continued. It was the fans, some of them, we have lovely, lovely fans, but some of them were also hard on me in the way they loved Alex Dunphy. And because I wasn't Alex Dunphy and didn't look like Alex, I didn't want to dress like Alex … I was just different in that way. I'm not my character."

The four-time Screen Actors Guild Award winner — who appeared on the Red Table Talk episode, titled Shamed and Bullied Online, along with former Fifth Harmony member Lauren Jauregui — says the trolling came from fans who could not accept that the real-life Ariel was growing up and was not the same person that they watched on their TV screens.

She added: "From them, they're like, 'How did you go from Alex Dunphy to being, like, a w***e? You're trying to be sexy, you're 13, you're a horrible role model. What are you showing people? You got so fat on TV, now you look so fat.'"

Ariel, 23, revealed the reason for her weight gain in high school was that it was a side-effect of the antidepressants she had been prescribed by her doctor.

She said: "I gained 30 pounds (13.6kg). It was rough going to school, it was rough online, on my Instagram it was flooding comments, flooding comments. And so then I was like, 'They hate this about me, I need to work on it.'"

READ ALSO: Jessica Simpson became a recluse after intense body shaming