Comedian Sherri Shepherd has had her fair share of ups and downs throughout her career. Even during her highest moment, which included a spot on the Emmy-winning daytime talk show “The View,” things weren’t always glitz and glamour. During a recent interview with People, the 53-year-old Shepherd revealed that being on that panel next to Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar was one of the most painful but rewarding experiences of her life.
“It was the most painful experience that I’ve ever gone through, but it was the best experience,” the actress told the media outlet. She added, “Barbara was so hard on me. I cried for three years in my dressing room because she was so hard on me, but she did it out of love.”
Shepherd also revealed that her feelings of insecurity were further amplified when fellow talk show host Wendy Williams declared on her own show that the actress could easily be “replaced with a potato sack.”
Williams’ comment was seemingly rooted in the fact that Shepherd was often criticized for not being well-versed in current events and often misspoke when she covered social issues. In 2014, the “Brian Banks” actress made headlines after she made a series of comments, based on her Christian beliefs, about the LGBTQ community. The host later clarified her statements and issued a public apology on-air.
At the time, fellow co-host Walters offered her some harsh yet helpful advice. “I love you,” Shepherd recalled hearing Walters say. “I just need you to read a book, dear, and learn to defend what you believe. And speak up.”
Today the actress says, “You love who you love.” She added, “I’ve evolved. Look, my best friend, my best friend Tommy Borden, he’s been married to his husband, Jimmy, for the last 17 years. I couldn’t even make two marriages work past six years. Who am I to be judging anybody?”
The “Beauty Shop” actress admitted she knew the feeling of being targeted by what is now known as “cancel culture.” The star recalled her final moments before leaving the show saying, “When people wanted to cancel me and take out full-page ads on me and take it outside ‘The View,’ I would cry. Because I would go, ‘If you knew my heart.’ I came from doing standup and making people laugh and doing sitcoms.”
Shepherd added that she thinks the world needs to slow down and just lead with love. “I wish we were a culture of loving and going, ‘Let’s just see, hold on before we go, click, your entire life is done, your livelihood. You can never come back from this.’ ” She concluded that sentiment by saying there are “cases where it’s just like: You need to be in jail.”
In 2014, Shepherd was asked to leave “The View,” according to People. With that bad news, Shepherd said she held on to her “faith by the skin of my teeth.”
Since then, the actress has continued working and even has a starring role as a school principal in the new Netflix series “Mr. Iglesias.” Earlier this month, the actress started her permanent gig as a co-host on “Dish Nation,” and she can be heard on the podcast she has with actress Kym Whitley titled “Two Funny Mamas.”