What Lessons did Miss America Teach Me?

Suggestions to Boost self-esteem

Anna Simpson
6 min readJul 24, 2019


Credit to Matheus Bertelli on Pexels.com

When I first saw her, I was impressed by how well together she was: beautiful, poised, gracious, kind, well-spoken woman shining on the stage. What else would you expect from Miss America?

I met Teresa Scalnan, Miss America 2011, during the leadership conference where she was the master of ceremonies. Despite the celebrity status, Teresa is a sweet and down-to-earth girl. We started talking, and during our conversation she shared a little bit of her story.

After winning the beauty pageant, she got married, had a baby and everything was going well, until she found out that her husband started cheating on her. A bit later, she discovered that he was cheating on her while she was pregnant..

I couldn’t believe my ears. Cheating on a woman is just not within my map of the world. But how could someone cheat on Miss America?!

She just smiled and said, “If a man wants to cheat, it doesn’t matter whether his wife is a beauty queen or not. That’s just who he is.”

Then she continued, “He used to make comments that I was only pretty with a makeup on, and was accusing me of being fat.”

Cheating was bad enough. But being called fat, carrying his baby? That was just beyond me. The things I was hearing were absolutely shocking!

Now, I don’t know that man or his reasons and I don’t want to sound judgemental, but his deplorable behaviour was just the lowest of the low.

That girl has gone through some dark chapters in her life. Thankfully, she has divorced, let me just say before being carried away in the emotional rage, “not a nice man”, and has put all the drama behind her.

The wounds weren’t bleeding any more, and I could see in her eyes that those challenges have made her stronger and better. She has rebuilt her self-image, self-esteem, and self-confidence. I was happy to see she was glowing in her power.

I admired her vulnerability, transparency and the ability to forgive. Her ex-husband has lost such a gem, a beautiful girl inside out.

Even beauty queens struggle with self-esteem issues. When it first happened, Teresa was thinking…



Anna Simpson

Helping people discover, articulate, and monetise their messages and stories, so they can get paid for who they are. www.anna-simpson.com/book