Amy’s Baking Company: Sensitivity to Criticism Goes Viral

Last Friday on Fox’s reality TV series “Kitchen Nightmares,” chef Gordon Ramsay paid a visit to “Amy’s Baking Company,” a restaurant in Scottsdale, Arizona. Just like he does in every episode, Gordon Ramsay offered his constructive criticism with the intention of improving the restaurant’s success. The restoration process, however, was cut short for the first time in the show’s history because the owners of the restaurant, Amy and Samy Bouzaglo, showed excessive resistance and defensiveness to Ramsay’s signature not-so-sensitive criticism. The two restaurant owners then became a viral hit over the internet because of their continued over-the-top display of oversensitivity to criticism even after the show.

Sensitivity to criticism comes from not feeling good enough as a person.

Amy's Baking Company[ Samy and Amy Bouzaglo, owners of “Amy’s Baking Company” ]

Although the feeling of inadequacy is shared by many people, those who struggle with it the most are obsessives (highly anxious highly sensitive people) who had been starved of healthy affirmation during their childhood. This does not necessarily mean that their parents all have directed much of their criticism toward their children while they were growing up. No. Their parents could have very well been good-hearted, loving people who provided frequent words of affirmation. The question is “when?”

Although it makes sense to give positive affirmation at the onset of good results, affirmation linked only to performance is very unhealthy, especially for obsessive children who think in extremes. This kind of affirmation sets up children to define themselves by how well they perform. In the video, it seems pretty clear to me that Amy defines her self-worth by how well she performs as a chef. When anything less than perfection is delivered, performance-oriented obsessive people hear a voice in their head saying “you are fatally flawed!” When others say, “This could have been better,” they hear, “You are a disgusting human being! On the show, one of the servers asked, “Are you sure?” to Amy. Amy took this simple question as a hostile challenge and equated the experience to someone holding a gun to her head. People who have lived the majority of their life listening to this kind of verbal abuse inside their head are very broken inside.

The choice of words that Amy and Samy use to attack their opposers and “haters” is a reflection of what they constantly hear inside their head. In their mind, Amy and Samy are simply mirroring everyone else’s insensitive communication. It feels to them like the entire world is out to attack them.

It is devastating when one’s identity gets crushed. I can see Amy and Samy desperately trying so hard to fight against the idea that they are not good enough as people. It appears that pride has made its way into their lives to help them cope better with their pain. They have convinced themselves that everyone else is wrong and they alone are the only ones who know how good food tastes.

My heart breaks for Amy and Samy Bouzaglo. I hope they get to discover soon that they are good enough just the way they are, regardless of how well they cook or run a restaurant. I am bothered by the online world’s insensitivity towards them. Rather than leaving these two poor broken people alone, so many people are attacking them for fun, just to get a kick out of their reaction.

Welcome to the new world of online bullying 😦

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 thoughts on “Amy’s Baking Company: Sensitivity to Criticism Goes Viral

  1. Frank says:

    This article is garbage. They yell at and abuse their own customers and somehow they are the victims. Its not as simple as that they are just overly sensitive and have OCD like this article says, did the author even watch the damn episode? The biggest joke of a line in the article is this one, ‘ I hope they get to discover soon that they are good enough just the way they are…’ No you idiot, they aren’t, they are toxic to themselves, each other, and everyone around them.

    • Daniel Kim says:

      I wonder which one would be more effective in bringing about positive change and healing in the couple… getting to the root of their problems and building their self-esteem? or telling them that they are toxic? hmmmmm…

  2. Joann says:

    Dan, I’m glad that you wrote this. I had similar thoughts when watching it all unfold. Empathy is a better skill to possess than aimlessly trolling blogs and calling people idiots.

  3. Donna says:

    Today I found out my son of 31 yrs has OCPD. I found this site and have found it to be so true to him. In his teen years he was diagnosed as having OCD. now married with family and not being on medication for years he had severe anxiety today which he went to ER. I’m praying that he will be able to get the help he needs and that I can also understand this and we can have our relationship back. I know I’m not perfect and I like things orderly and have done things that I didn’t realize that we’re so hurtful to him. Throwing away things, cleaning, and rearranging all these years as a Mother and Grandmother I did what I did thinking I was helping. It would make him angry but realize caused resentment towards me. Pray for our family that we will reach forgiveness.

  4. Theresa Lyn says:

    I was with you until the last paragraph. People don’t go on reality shows to be left alone. Anyone as a right to seek publicity, but there’s no guarantee of what comes of that. You could say they were seeking help for their restaurant – but there are plenty of ways of doing that that don’t come with such public exposure. Sure, online responses can get over the top – but there’s just no going into that without your eyes open at this point.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: