Bachelor SA contestant speaks out about bullying after latest episode

09 March 2019 - 12:00 By Karishma Thakurdin
America Gopie is determined not to let bullies get the better of her.
America Gopie is determined not to let bullies get the better of her.
Image: Instagram/ America Gopie

The Bachelor SA hopeful and attorney America Gopie opened up about the pain she endured for most of life due to bullying and what it felt like to be subjected to hateful comments after Thursday night's episode of the reality show. 

America is one of 24 young women from all walks of life trying to win over the heart of bachelor Lee Thompson. 

Taking to Instagram after the latest episode of the show aired on Thursday, America poured her heart out about what it felt like to see people's negative comments about her physical appearance. 

"It breaks my heart to think that women in South Africa think it’s okay to berate and denigrate a woman who has tried to battle bullying for years, and fast track to 2019, this is what I have to face."

America revealed that three months before the show made its debut America had major jaw reconstructive surgery after being teased about her teeth for most of her life. 

"At one point, I felt like giving up. I refused to leave my house. Every time I looked in the mirror, I hated myself. I was called every horrible name one could think of. Bugs bunny, a beaver, I was called ugly. It felt like a nightmare that wouldn’t end."

She said she was left shocked after Thursday's episode and how people think it's okay to demean a human being.  

Despite everything she's been through, America is determined to be "unapologetically and authentically" herself. 

The Bachelor SA airs every Thursday night at 7pm on M-Net (DStv 101). 

View this post on Instagram

Tonight has been one of thee most difficult evenings I have ever had to endure. At this point, it breaks my heart to think that women in South Africa think it’s okay to berate and denigrate a woman who has tried to battle bullying for years, and fast track to 2019, this is what I have to face. I had major reconstructive jaw surgery because I was teased about my teeth, my entire life. At one point, I felt like giving up. I refused to leave my house. Every time I looked in the mirror, I hated myself. I was called every horrible name one could think of. Bugs bunny, a beaver, I was called ugly. It felt like a nightmare that wouldn’t end. And somehow tonight, after episode 4 of the #bachelorSA, people think it’s okay to demean a humanbeing because of adult braces. Because “she doesn’t conform to society’s standard of being beautiful”. The truth is, due to the bullying I was subjected to, three months before the show, I had a lefort osteotomy, whereby my jaw was broken. I was wired for 6 weeks, placed on a liquid diet and lost 15kgs. Surgery on the jaw takes a maximum of three years to heal. Through my endevour, I soldiered on, and today, I am so unapologetically and authentically myself, that I stand tall and proud of who I am. I will showcase my flaws. Let me say that pointing out someone else’s flaws, does not make you pretty. You’re just as horrible as your words. To those who have supported me through my journey of recovery, and have empathized with the mere fact that I was still swollen and still had braces as a result of my surgery recovery, whilst on the show, who looked beyond my braces, thank you ♥️ #stopbullying#thebachelorsa#selflove

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