Inspiring Journey from being body shamed to becoming a model

MUMBAI: From school, to college and even workplace, we have often seen people come at the receiving end of body shaming. They are taunted and bullied for how they look, how they are either too fat or too thin, either too short or too tall. As a result, many are known to become victims of depression and eating disorders like bulimia or anorexia, etc. While those around either generally laughs it off or take the incident lightly, the person himself or herself has a tough time dealing with it, with only family and friends as support systems.

Just like Mikhail Merchant, a professional model who lives in Mumbai. But before he became what he is today, he was subjected to bullying. Humans of Bombay, popular Facebook page, told his story recently.

Read the post here.

"I was overweight while growing up and faced a lot of bullying throughout my childhood. Since birth, I've been unable to hear so there were a lot of times when I didn't even know when people were making fun of me, but there were times when the boys in my class would come close and say nasty things and that's when I knew that I was being bullied. Since then, I withdrew and had very few friends. I would get very frustrated at myself, but my mother was always my biggest support. She used to tell me, ‘people will always try and pull you down...but that just means you're already above them!' and that's what kept me going for the longest time.

At 17, my world changed once again - my mother passed away and it was at this point that I found it difficult to cope with life. For months, I didn't do anything but there came a point when I had to get out of it and make something of myself...make her proud. It was around this time that I began to work out, and as time passed I knew that I wanted to become the fittest version of myself. I pushed myself to run, swim and work out at the gym every single day for 3 years and I went from 145 kgs to 70kgs. From being bullied about being overweight, I'm on the way to my first modelling assignment next month and it's all because my family didn't allow me to give up. My mother may not be here, but her words still guide me and I wish she could have been here to see my transformation...I hope I've made her proud."

Fast, accurate and updated real time local news is available on your smartphone and tablet.