Impact Wrestling: You don’t owe Tessa Blanchard any support after the truth emerged

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There have long been whispers about Tessa Blanchard bullying other wrestlers backstage, but now that multiple wrestlers have come forward with specific examples of Blanchard abusing co-workers, there is simply no turning back.

On Sunday night at Impact Wrestling’s ironically nicknamed “Hard To Kill” Pay Per View, Tessa Blanchard will face Sami Callihan in a main event Impact World Championship match that has been brewing for months. This match could be Blanchard’s crowning moment and a massive win for her and intergender wrestling as a whole, serving as a crowning moment for a woman whose success has become synonymous with Impact’s fight to stay relevant.

But on the eve of her potential victory, the truth has emerged about Blanchard’s true self. She may portray an inspiring hero in the ring, but outside the ring, she is a bully. Wrestling fans have always wondered why a major promotion, specifically WWE, didn’t make an attempt to sign her.

Well, here’s why.

First, we have Allysin Kay’s account. The former Impact Wrestling star recalled an incident in which Blanchard spat in the face of a Black woman and called her the “n” word.

Words cannot sum up how disgusting of an act this is. No, random person in the comments, this wasn’t Tessa “having a bad day”. This is criminal, racist abuse and an incident disqualifying of support for Blanchard.

La Black Rose was the wrestler who suffered this awful, disgusting racism from Blanchard, and she confirmed this incident.

WWE superstar Chelsea Green also spoke out about Blanchard’s repeated bullying of co-workers.

Priscilla Kelly had something to say to Tessa, too.

Squared Circle Sirens reporter Casey Michael noted that he’s reported various backstage incidents of abuse from Tessa in the past. For those of you wondering, that includes two separate incidents at STARDOM – perhaps one of them is what Kay is referring to – as well as an incident at the Mae Young Classic, which should explain WWE’s total lack of interest in her. There have also been allegations of Blanchard bullying Isla Dawn so much in Japan that the current NXT UK wrestler left.

And Dawn added to the tweets calling out Blanchard for her abusive behavior.

All of these incidents paint Tessa Blanchard as a repeated abuser, someone who has torn down other women in the industry, and as a person willing to stoop so low as to abuse someone with a racist slur.

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There will be plenty of people jumping with weak excuses for Blanchard’s behavior. I can already hear them in my head. “She’s having a bad day.” “People are allowed to make mistakes.” “It was in the past.” “But she’s so good at wrestling!”

None of those are relevant. A repeated pattern of abuse and harmful behavior go beyond “bad days” or “mistakes”. These are a part of her character. Sure, Blanchard can be strong, inspiring, and talented in the ring, but those are the traits of her kayfabe character.

In reality, she has hurt so many people around her over the years, and the sheer number of incidents, which she has never apologized for or shown accountability for, make it clear that this isn’t a “thing of the past”. This is in the present, and her actions – not just words – have seriously hurt others.

So you don’t owe Tessa Blanchard anything. Even if she was your favorite wrestler or someone you looked up to, you don’t have to keep supporting her. She doesn’t know who you are, but you know who her victims are. Blanchard’s abuse, which again, includes racist abuse, is unbecoming of a top star and not the kind of behavior we can have in wrestling. We talk about making wrestling a better place, but it’s hard to do that if we don’t hold wrestlers to a higher standard.

As hard as it is to say this about a woman in wrestling who has done so much good inside the ring, Blanchard’s actions have held back others who could easily be in the position she’s in. Hearing these stories is likely creating cognitive dissonance in your head, and it can be easy to want to believe that the inspiring character you see on television is real.

While Blanchard likely has positive aspects to her real-life character that have made her so successful in the ring, those pale in comparison to the choices she’s made to hurt others. You can make a choice. Don’t choose the illusion and don’t feel like you owe Blanchard anything. You don’t. You can hold her to a higher standard and hope that she genuinely improves as a person, instead of continuing to abuse her colleagues, playing a role in holding women’s wrestling back even as she is pushing it forward tomorrow night at Hard To Kill.

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Again, there’s dissonance here, but the choice is in your hands. And based on Blanchard’s responses to these multiple allegations, Blanchard continues to cowardly hide behind a false sense of innocence without showing true remorse for the damage she’s done.