‘They called the pictures inappropriate. But these pictures show me in the uniform of my chosen sport.’
Mindi Jensen is a middle school teacher and single mum.
She’s also a hard-working bodybuilder and bikini model who regularly documents her fitness progress on Instagram.
Her online account uses a pseudonym, so it’s not easily accessible to the students at her Utah school. But when parents from the school found her Instagram account recently, they dubbed it “pornographic” — and Ms Jensen was left fighting for her job.
Ms Jensen, whose Instagram account shows pictures of her in the gym and wearing the bikinis in which she competes, told Good 4 Utah parents of her North Sanpete Middle School in Moroni pupils had attacked her images as “immodest”.
“Kids found it and the parents were appalled by the pictures. They called it immodest. They called it pornographic. They called the pictures inappropriate,” the mother-of-four said.
“[But] these are my fitness, and show pictures in my sport, in my uniform in my bodybuilding sport.” (sic)
Jensen says the parents complained to the school’s administrators, who on Tuesday gave her three options: set the photos to private, take them down or lose her job.
But Jensen fought back against her school’s request, saying her body-building helped with her depression and inspired many of her female followers.
“I get comments and messages that it’s inspirational to them, and that these women like my story, and they’re following my story, and if I put it to private then it’s not going to reach these people that might need and understand me,” the recently divorced US woman told Fox 13.
She added that if parents were uncomfortable with their children seeing bikini pictures, they could more closely supervise their children’s internet use.
“Put restrictions on your children. If you are not comfortable with seeing me in my fitness uniform on stage posing, then take that away from your kid. Don’t take it away from me,” she told Fox 13.
Mindi Jensen’s Instagram. Post continues after gallery:
“What I do is not “gross” “immoral” “immodest” or “inappropriate” it doesn’t make me a bad mom,” she wrote.
“Get to know me you just might find out I’m pretty great, and never judge or gossip based on looks. No one knows the reasons a person chooses a certain path in life. I was tired of being weak, without a voice, and unhappy…. so here I am.”
Fortunately for Ms Jensen, the school district had a change of heart, and has now apologised for the super-fit mother.
The North Sanpete School District superintendent told Good 4 Utah it had “cleared up any misconceptions with employees,” and even pledged to work to train parents on how to monitor their children’s internet usage.