Modern Family has made Ariel Winter a star. She began playing Alex Dunphy when she was only 11. Now that the show is ending in its 11th season, Winter is 22. She grew up on television, which she said was tough for her to watch. It might have been even tougher to deal with critics commenting on her changing appearance through the years. Winter wasn’t shy about speaking up for herself.
Winter was on a Television Critics Association panel for the final season of Modern Family on January 8. After the panel, she spoke with reporters further about how she’s responded to criticism over the years. Modern Family airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.
Ariel Winter may regret not using a ‘Modern Family’ friendly tone in responding to her critics
Ariel Winter was open about having breast reduction surgery and spoke up for body positivity, but she’s faced negative comments over the years. The exposure from Modern Family also brought followers who criticized her body, suggesting she had plastic surgery when she hadn’t. Others criticized the photos she chose to post on Instagram, suggesting they were too revealing.
In a New Year’s Eve photo, a follower commented on her thinness. Winter joked that her psychiatrist switched her antidepressant to cocaine and crystal meth. She concluded by saying he was “hating on someone when you ignore the truth coming from the actual person in order to follow your own fantasy narrative.”
Winter told reporters after the Modern Family panel she never means hurt anyone else’s feelings when she defends herself or her friends. If her sarcasm ever comes across that way, that would be her only regret.
“I’m sure I’ve said a couple things that I regret being salty but I never wanted to hurt anybody,” Winter said. “I never want to be mean to anybody. It’s just like protecting myself or protecting people I love because people also attack people you know.”
Ariel Winter has no regrets about speaking up for herself or her ‘Modern Family’ costars
That said, Ariel Winter will never sit back and take inappropriate criticism. She will also jump to her Modern Family costars’ defense. Sarah Hyland also receives scrutiny as she discusses her health issues (she had a kidney transplant) and fluctuating weight. Even if she misspeaks, she will simply do better next time.
“I don’t think I regret anything I’ve said because honestly everything for me is a learning experience,” Winter said. “I learn from what I did and move on.”
How Ariel Winter weathers the criticism
When Ariel Winter signed up for Modern Family, she didn’t sign up for a full time job defending her personal choices. It was a crash course, but Ariel Winter says she’s learned methods to speak up and take care of herself.
“I think it gives you a thicker skin and it shows you that self-care is important,” Winter said. “Take time for yourself. Develop how you feel about yourself and your own confidence and not paying attention to the internet.”
She has this advice for anyone else going through it
Any young person in the spotlight could go through what Ariel Winter goes through. She offers this advice for anyone else struggling.
“Probably just remember the people around you are the people that matter,” Winter said. “Your opinion of yourself is what matters and don’t let rejection stop you from doing what you want to do.”