Celebrities have a complicated relationship with social media. While using social media is often the best way to take charge of their own narratives while still opening up to fans, they also open themselves up to a lot of criticism.
Many people argue this criticism is part of the fame game.
The commentary can be so cruel that some celebrities refuse to participate in social media, while others who try are forced away. Modern Family‘s Sarah Hyland is the latest star deciding to take a step back from social media, and the circumstances that led her to that decision are pretty awful.
Sarah, who just celebrated her 28th birthday, is pretty active on all her social media accounts. Her family was recently struck by tragedy when her uncle and cousin were involved in a car accident with a drunk driver.
Sarah’s 14-year-old cousin, Trevor, did not survive the accident. Her uncle, Bryon, survived the crash but is still facing a number of medical procedures.
When Sarah took to Twitter to share the family’s GoFundMe campaign with her fans, the feedback she met with was heartless.
Sarah Hyland is no stranger to internet trolls. As a celebrity, she’s had to deal with her fair share of criticism.
The actress, who plays Haley Dunphy on Modern Family, has had to speak out about her weight after being criticized for her small frame.
Sarah also suffers from kidney dysplasia, a condition where the kidneys don’t form properly in the womb and frequently grow painful cysts. She received a kidney from her father in a 2012 kidney transplant.
Sarah has had to explain that her difficulty keeping weight on is related to her invisible illness and that she does not have or support eating disorders.
Sarah has stayed strong as horrible things have been said about her from people who have ignored her explanations or simply believe she’s lying. When a family tragedy had her reaching out to her followers for help, Sarah was met with a lot of love and support, but also a lot of hatred.
Sarah tweeted a GoFundMe campaign out to her followers after a car accident caused by a drunk driver killed her 14-year-old cousin, Trevor, and critically injured her uncle.
She shared the painful story about how the driver, who had multiple DUIs, hit Sarah’s uncle’s car so hard that her cousin, who was wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle.
Many fans offered appropriate comments, sharing their condolences and offering help and support where they could.
But some cruel people couldn’t resist asking why the star couldn’t pay the $40,000 goal herself.
The comments were rude and unnecessary, especially since Sarah’s family was dealing with a tragedy.
They even went so far as to research the value of Sarah’s net worth to justify their comments.
Sarah’s fans continued to support her. Many said the actress shouldn’t be criticized for how much she donated. According to the public GoFundMe contributions, Sarah donated $1,000. She may have provided additional measures of support privately, of course, but the number seemed to be unsatisfactory to trolls who don’t know when to stop.
Sarah asked those who had nothing nice to say to cut it out, but the naysayers continued to share their opinions.
Sarah tweeted defeatedly just eight hours later, announcing she’d be staying offline for a while because the “horrible negative ignorant words have broken me.”
A week later, Sarah returned to Twitter to tell her followers that she wasn’t going to respond to the horrible tweets about her.
Sarah then opened up about her kidney disease and two kidney transplant surgeries. The second kidney transplant came from her brother, because her body was rejecting her father’s kidney.
It’s clear that Sarah needed a break from social media after her family tragedy, but now she’s back and sharing important health information about herself with the world.