It was 17-year-old Tayja Jones’ first prom. The junior at Pottsgrove High School was excited to get all dressed up and have a magical night. The funny thing is, at first, all of that did happen. Tayja felt beautiful in her dress.
When she stepped out with her date, her friends literally clapped and roared. Then she had a blast at the dance. It wasn’t until she posted a photo online that her wonderful experience was undermined by bullies. After posting the proud photo, her friends called her the next morning. The photo had gone viral for a horrifying reason. The cyberbullies made fun of Tayja’s weight, saying the dress wasn’t made for someone her size. The cruelty seemed unending. You’d think her dress was something strange or provocative, but Tayja looked pretty incredible, if you ask me.
“There were just like so many rude remarks and negative comments about how I looked. People I didn’t know just like, ‘That dress is not for her, she looks like a fat something,'” Tayja told Fox 29‘s Shawnette Wilson. “It was just really hurtful because I was so confident the day before and it just changed my view of myself.”
Her spirit was beaten down. After an amazing night, it felt like she had remembered it all wrong: she wasn’t beautiful, she didn’t have a good time, it was all a lie. That’s the power of bullying. However, as the negative comments began to pile up, so did the positive ones in Tayja’s defense.
“We are all God’s creatures perfect in his image. Shaming someone not only brings them down but brings yourself down with them. Spread love not discrimination,” Tayja read one of the positive comments out loud.
While she is still unsure if she wants to attend next year’s prom, the positive response is helping her heal. Please SHARE Tayja’s story to take a stance against bullying and to let her know she looked beautiful that night!
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