A 9-year-old boy from Australia, named Quaden Bayles, came to prominence recently after a video of him crying because he was bullied for his dwarfism went viral.
However, as the video clip began circulating the Internet, there were also people who were not convinced by its content and claimed Quaden was a fraud, and the video was staged.
On Friday, Yarraka Bayles, Quaden’s mother, opened up and expressed her gratitude towards everyone who had shown support for her son and his struggles.
According to Yarraka, she and her family never expected that the clip could create such a media frenzy and talked about Quaden’s condition, stating it was indeed very real, and as his parent, she worried about him every day.
The concerned mother also remarked she had to be prepared for the worst because of everything he was going through, including not only his medical condition but also the suicide attempts.
Meanwhile, one user Twitter, Jasmein Dowe, wrote a message stating that Quaden was lying, and in reality, he was an 18-year-old teenager who supposedly decided to make a prank with the video clip.
Following the accusation, Jasmein’s account on the popular social media platform was deleted, but apparently, others were convinced by the theory about the faked footage, because soon people were sharing pictures of Quaden, in which he appeared to be much older.
Across the world, thousands of people were touched by Quaden’s pain, including actor Hugh Jackman.
The 51-year-old celebrity, who is also Australian like Quaden, defended the boy as he issued a statement saying that bullying was never okay.
There are a lot of exchanges online over what happened, however, some see the reactions as an illustration of misconceptions around dwarfism.
Public relations director for Little People of America Michelle Kraus explained to the Insider: “In Quaden’s situation, they were talking about manipulating your appearance to make you look younger, even though you’re an adult because you can. Or because maybe you’re born with dwarfism, you do look younger. You know, I think it’s highly exploitative and really has no basis in reality.”
One commenter went in the same direction and added: “This world is so ass backwards. It’s truly pitiful that young people have to cope with issues that shouldn’t even be an issue because kids are receiving less and less guidance. Poor little guy. Enjoy your life sweetie. No one is worth harming yourself for. They’ll meet ‘Karma’ some day soon. You can bet your beautiful self on that.”
Despite that, some people still choose to believe that this is the work of an actor and that the story is fake.
A critic shared: “Save your money folks, the kid isn’t even in school. He is an 18-year-old actor whos family put this whole charade on to make money. Should be thoroughly investigated.”
Quaden’s sister, Guyala Bayles, has rushed to his defense and wrote this on social media: “I say F - - K the bullies and the haters! You’re the coolest, smartest, strongest and the most sweetest kid I know! You’re not alone and we’re all here for you my bruh.”
Although the original video was deleted, the boy’s mother still kept her personal page open and an online fundraiser has amassed close to $500,000 for the victim of bullying.