Jillian Michaels Left 'Biggest Loser' to Protect Her Kids

Jillian MichaelsFitness guru Jillian Michaels has made a household name for herself over the last 10 years by training contestants towards their weight-loss goals on NBC's The Biggest Loser, but she recently decided to walk away from the hit show. The 40-year-old mom of two doesn't have any bad blood with the show, and wants fans to know she hasn't gotten too big for her britches.

"I don't want fans to think I feel like I'm too big for the show or that I'm seeking greener pastures. I'm so grateful to the show and so sad to leave," she said. However, she also mentioned "some fundamental differences [with Loser's producers] that have existed for a while." Namely, the way she has increasingly been portrayed in recent seasons, and how that image has been affecting her young family.


"In the beginning of the show it was tough love. You saw the tough, and you saw the love," Michaels said, before lamenting that more recently the show seemed to focus on her harshness, rather than the help she offered clients. "You saw none of the relationships, none of the bonds that I build with my clients," she said.

"Millions of people have this warped negative perception of me," she said, and it's begun to infect her family life with her partner Heidi Rhoades and their children, 4-year-old daughter Lukensia and 2-year-old son Phoenix.

Michaels told the story of how she picked up her daughter from camp, and someone had told her, "I know who your mom is -- she's a cheater. I saw it on TV." This past season, she was accused of cheating because she allowed her Loser team to take caffeine pills. She still stands behind that decision, by the way, and I don't blame her.

She also said she was hurt by commentators on TV shows quipping about "what kind of mom I must be."

The controversial win by Rachel Frederickson last season was the last straw for Michaels, who said, "I had to take a hard look at my work ... I came to the conclusion that moving forward, I need to be able to have an impact on the outcome of what I do."

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Good for her taking a stand and putting her family first. It must have been so tough to have to watch her daughter struggle with having her family attacked like that. People have different perceptions of reality, and it isn't just on reality TV. This kind of thing can happen to any kid with parents -- not just the ones in the public eye.

So-and-so's daddy smokes, or this person's Mommy never cleans up ... how do we deal with it? We can't become perfect parents, mostly because there is no such thing as a perfect parent. Perfect parents get slammed for trying too hard.

The best thing to do is to tell your kids that everyone is entitled to their opinions, no matter how wrong they might be. Not everyone gets to see the whole picture, and it's not a very nice thing to say mean things like that. We can't teach other people's kids how to act, but we sure as heck can teach ours. Who knows? Maybe they'll set an example.

What would you do if your kid told you another child was bad mouthing you?


Image via NBC.com

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