Stranger Things’ Shannon Purser Says She Has Been at ‘War’ with Her Body Since Age 11

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Shannon Purser says she’s been at “war” with her body since age 11 — but she’s making improvements.

The actress, who played Barb on Stranger Things and is in the new show Rise, called out the body shamers on social media who are only making her self-esteem issues worse.

Purser, 20, tweeted honestly about her insecurities on Tuesday.

“Please do not ever make comments about my weight or tell me that I look good or bad because of it. I look good now. I am happy. I don’t need you to approve my body. Thanks,” she wrote.

Purser added later that she’s been at “war” with her self-image since her middle school years.

“My war with my body started at age 11 and soon all I wanted was to be thin. I’ve struggled with that insecurity almost every day since,” she said. “I still have bad days, but I’m much better now. I hope one day we’ll learn to be kind to our bodies and teach our kids to do the same.”

She also offered to talk with her followers about confidence and self-esteem — but warned them against criticism.

“That being said, if you ever wanna have a discussion about body positivity — I’m all ears! I just prefer not to hear comments about my body, even if they’re well-intentioned,” she said.

Purser’s followers cheered for her tweets, which garnered nearly 24,000 likes and hundreds of supportive comments.

The actress told PEOPLE in August that she’s continuously working on her mental health and body image.

“I don’t have a typical body type, and that used to be something that made me feel very alone and weird,” Purser said. “I’ve gotten so many messages from people saying like, ‘It’s so refreshing to see somebody who looks like me on TV,’ and that really means the world to me.”

“I think,” she added, “once I kind of got to a place of self-acceptance, looking past all the insecurities that I have, I’ve really grown so much as a person.”

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