Pamela Anderson talks feeling underestimated by other people: 'I always wished for people to think more of me'

The 56-year-old reflected on feeling as though she's "a chameleon who likes to try other lives on for size" in a new open journal entry.

Pamela Anderson's latest open journal touches on her public persona. (Image via Getty Images)
Pamela Anderson's latest open journal touches on her public persona. (Image via Getty Images)

Pamela Anderson is candidly reflecting on her lifelong struggle with feeling underestimated. The Canadian "Baywatch" star recently shared an intimate excerpt from her open journal, where she spoke candidly of the impact public perception has had on her self-esteem.

"I used to say that it was nice to have no (or low) expectations placed upon me, and joked that if I formed a full sentence I was 'a genius'… that since I had nothing to live up to, I couldn't disappoint anyone… It was a cop out," Anderson penned.

The 56-year-old admitted she always wanted to be known for more than just her beauty, writing, "I always wished for people to think more of me — that I was talented, intelligent and a developed person with interesting things to say with points of view and knowledge of the world."

"I really believed that I was what people thought of me and it started and stemmed from my own insecurities," Anderson added.

The Sonsie Beauty co-founder reflected on how to balance external perception with her true identity and described herself as "a chameleon who likes to try other lives on for size" but says "they never fit."

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 06: Pamela Anderson attends the 2024 Met Gala Celebrating
Pamela Anderson says she feels like a "fearful girl" as she approaches 60. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

"As I near 60 years old I am the same fearful girl I was at 5," Anderson confessed.

This isn't the first time Anderson has spoken publicly about feeling underestimated. Speaking with NPR in January 2023, she discussed how her image, often defined by her sex appeal, led people to undervalue her other talents, like her work as an animal activist.

"There have been strange things. When I would write a letter to somebody to meet them, they would call and say, you know, the prime minister of Australia, for instance, would say, can I bring my buddies along?" Anderson recounted. "I was getting kind of used to that kind of behaviour, but publicly people we're starting to kind of catch on how awful that was."

Anderson noted how important it was for her to feel accomplished and find meaning in other areas of her life.

"I was able to change laws for animals and that was really important to me to kind of have some meaning along with this kind of silly, superficial career. I felt like I wasn't able to really dig my teeth into anything of substance when it came to my career. So I thought, well, this is how I can create some meaning," she shared.

The actress explained that her public identity being reduced to her beauty often led to surprise when she showcased her other abilities. "I always kind of laugh when people go, 'Oh, my gosh, she wrote a poem!' or 'She said this!' And if it was anybody else, maybe it would be kind of sidelined, but because it was me, it was so shocking," she said.

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