Note: we are republishing this story to raise awareness about body shaming and the damage it can cause to people’s mental health.
Tori Jenkins says that the management at the Smoky Crossing Apartments in Seymour, Tennessee, warned her about her swimming suit and the effect it could have on teen boys on June 20 (video below).
Jenkins told WATE: "It was just really degrading over all, and I left crying and I just went home."
The 20-year-old said she was wearing a pink one-piece suit when she was approached by a leasing office employee: "She said you cannot be at the pool in that bathing suit."
Jenkins recalled that the leasing agent told her to wear some shorts, or get in the pool where no one could see her.
Jenkins went to the leasing office where she recalled being scolded again:
She basically told me that if I didn't have kids, I wouldn't understand. If her kids were at the pool she wouldn't them want me in that swimsuit, how inappropriate I looked. And then she told me told there are a lot of teenage boys at the complex that I don't need to be exciting.
Newman wrote about the incident on Facebook:
I have never really witnessed sexual harassment and/or "rape culture" until today with Smoky Crossing Apartments...
Tori was accused of wearing a "thong bathing suit" and [was] told there were complaints about the way she was dressed after roughly 3 minutes tops, of us arriving there. We both kind of sat there in disbelief around five of our friends, some of which are residents and some not...
In the office, the leasing consultant (who, for now, I will not name) insisted upon letting Tori take her picture to show "how inappropriate" her bathing suit was, and instructed her to look into a mirror at her own body...
When Tori explained that yes, she does indeed have a larger butt than a lot of people, and that 95% of the things she wears ride up when she walks, the woman told Tori that a "normal bathing suit covers your entire butt" and again deemed my fiancee's body inappropriate. Tori, however, refused this because there are obviously different types of bathing suits.
The Smoky Crossing apartment complex released a statement to WATE:
Smoky Crossing is a welcoming family community. Multiple residents within our community complained and expressed concerns regarding Ms. Jenkins' swimwear. In accordance with our pool policies, which are posted near the swimming area, one of our leasing consultants requested Ms. Jenks wrap a towel around herself when she was walking around the pool.
Ms. Jenkins was never asked to leave the pool. In addition, our leasing agent did not state that Ms. Jenkins swimwear would excite teenage boys. Ms. Jenkins and Mr. Newman are valued members of our community. However, we feel it is inappropriate to equate requesting Ms. Jenkins to cover up with sexual harassment or rape culture. Smoky Crossing denounces harassment in all forms.