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Jamelia's Letter: Why I Had No Choice, But To Build My Own Table

Today I launched my online TV Show, The Table. This had been an idea I first wrote down in 2015; after a tumultuous three years on ITV's Loose Women. Apparently, they had received too much negative feedback from the general public, and so they weren't going to renew my contract. It'd been three years and to be honest, I had lasted way longer on the show than I had expected to. Every time I appeared on the show, sometimes three times a week, I would receive scathing comments, like, "I can't stand Jamelia", "she's too opinionated", 'I wish she would fix that hair!", "who does she think she is?" "she needs to be knocked down a peg or two" and my personal favourite "she has a chip on her shoulder". Every day. Without fail.

This, of course, became exhausting, but as the only "representative," I felt I had to get up after being knocked down time and time again, for fear of there being no representation if I wasn't there.

I noticed that I was always explaining my existence to people, both behind and in front of the camera, having things I felt passionate about being reduced to a three-minute snippet. Yet, while enduring this, I always knew the conversations black women need cannot be reduced to “hot takes”, but I was taking whatever I could get.