Blogger With Disability Trolls Haters With More Selfies

Melissa Blake decided to deal with comments about her “ugly” appearance by posting more photos of herself. The accomplished free-lance journalist has been dealing with her disability all her life, but it has never gotten in the way of her success. She showed her haters that the only people who look bad are those who judge others solely on their looks.

The 38-year-old blogger has a rare condition called Freeman-Sheldon syndrome. It’s a genetic disease that affects the muscles and bones. Usually, it mainly affects the mouth, face, hands, and feet. Joint deformities from birth result in restricted movement and some abnormal developments of the muscles. It affects the face, so those with it have some distinct facial features: pursed lips, prominent forehead or brow ridges, short noses, widely-spaced eyes, or droopy eyelids—just to name a few.

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Blake wrote a blog post about Donald Trump, and it went viral for the wrong reasons. People commenting and sharing the post were critiquing her looks instead of the content she wrote. They were calling her ugly, and some users even likened her face to a parade balloon. The comment that tested her patience the most, however, was one stating that she should be banned from posting photos of herself.

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Instead of folding under the pressures, Blake decided to do just the opposite. To show the haters that she’s not going to let them get the better of her, she began to post more photos of herself on Twitter. Her selfies and the message they represented received so much love and praise. Her tweet was retweeted over 29,000 times, and it got over 300,000 likes (as of publishing this article). She thanked her followers for all the support, and she linked them to her blog where they can read her articles.

Blake wishes to remind those trolling her that there is a real person behind the screen who is reading these comments. In person, people usually think twice before saying something mean, so it should be the same behaviour online. Blake highlighted an important aspect about being a woman journalist: people tend to focus on your looks more. No matter how good or bad an article is, a woman is likely to be attacked for their looks more than men.

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