This Disability Blogger Shut Up Haters Who Said She Was “Too Ugly” To Post Selfies With This One Cool Move
We live in a society that idealises perfection and is obsessed with unrealistic standards of beauty, which explains all the filters on the selfies we post. This has been the par for the course for as long as we can remember. However, the pandemic really put things into perspective and that’s why 2020 is being hailed as the year of inclusivity, body positivity and authenticity with self-love and self-acceptance becoming the buzzwords. But there are people who never miss a chance to bring other people down and prove we are not quite there yet. Body shaming and trolling on social media is something that affects celebrities and real women alike but only a few can clap back and put online haters and shamers in their place. Just like this American disability blogger did.
Melissa Blake, a freelance writer and blogger who was diagnosed with Freeman Sheldon syndrome at birth received hate for posting selfies on social media. She was told by a hater that she should be banned for posting selfies because she was “too ugly” (seriously, who hurt him?). But Blake decided to retaliate in the coolest way. She shut the trollers by posting her candid selfies each day for an entire year and showed that they can shove their opinions into where they came from.
She posted the first three selfies of the series last year and captioned it, “During the last round of trollgate, people said that I should be banned from posting photos of myself because I’m too ugly. So I’d just like to commemorate the occasion with these 3 selfies…” Ooh burn! Hope the hater got his lesson. You never mess with a woman in love, especially when she’s in love with herself.
During the last round of trollgate, people said that I should be banned from posting photos of myself because I’m too ugly. So I’d just like to commemorate the occasion with these 3 selfies… 📸😉👋🏻 pic.twitter.com/9ZuSYFOtwv
— Melissa Blake (@melissablake) September 7, 2019
Also Read: Lilly Singh Shares Decisions That Were Her Acts Of Self-Love And How It’s Integral To Our Mental Health. Her Views Are So On Point
Freeman Sheldon syndrome is a rare genetic bone and muscular disorder which causes abnormality in face, hands and feet. Blake was used to being called hurtful names and being body shamed on social media. However, it was in August last year when she wrote a piece of US President Donald Trump in her blog that invited hate and comments on how she looks, because sure, why not target a woman with a voice and opinion with feedback on something more important—her face.
However, this one comment really got to her. In an interview with The State, she said, “As a woman writer with a genetic bone and muscular disorder, who is also very active on the internet, I’m used to being called names like “blobfish” and “whale,” but there was one comment I just couldn’t shake. Someone said that I should be banned from posting photos of myself because I’m too ugly.” It’s obviously upsetting but it didn’t bring her spirit down. On the contrary, it fired her up to start a conversation about body confidence and self-acceptance and show other women and people with disability that beauty isn’t just limited to perfect features.
A year later, when she posted another of her selfie of the series with the hashtag MyBestSelfie, she captioned it, “I started posting selfies as a defiant response to trolls…sort of saying “You don’t want to see my photos? I’m going to post one EVERY DAY! What do you think of that?” Yes, friends, the quickest way to get me to do something is to tell me NOT to do it.”
The 39-year-old blogger turned fashion model and made her runway debut at the New York Fashion Week last month. She was the part of ‘Runway of Dreams’ which features collection for people with disabilities. She was among 24 people selected for the virtual show and showcased an outfit from Zappos Adaptive Line on the runway. And, yes, she ruled the catwalk as well.
“When you’re a teenager — disabled or not — you deal with issues of self-confidence and self-esteem. If I had seen someone who looked like me, I would have felt really seen.”
Melissa Blake on modeling in her first runway show — at New York Fashion Week: https://t.co/n1syA9AN8m
— Chicago Tribune (@chicagotribune) September 19, 2020
Now, she continues to post her playful and happy photos every day and lighten the feeds of her 109k followers. In one such self-love post, she pointed out, “So much of our culture is shaped by beauty standards — what is considered beautiful, who is considered beautiful. Beauty is an asset, whether we like it or not. Acceptance. Success. Even love. Our society says disabilities aren’t beautiful, which I think is tragic!” It is tragic and high time we move past the superficial beauty standards and stop putting people down for what the society thinks is beautiful. Because, it is BS.
Also, I think we can all learn a thing or two on self-love from Blake. She didn’t only give a 101 on how to shut an online hater but also broke the beauty stereotypes and did both like a boss. I mean, I would like to call myself a self-love advocate and someone who’s even lowkey obsessed with herself, but even I couldn’t have thought of doing something as savage as this to a hater. We are too quick to believe these people who have nothing better to do and slip into self-doubt, while actually we should be pulling off a badass move like Blake and show them the middle finger by throwing more selfies their way. This is the level of self-acceptance and confidence I wish to achieve. PS, her selfies are so adorable, I wanna cry.