Simone Biles has made a name for herself as an American gymnast, rising to compete in the 2016 Olympics and earning the gold medals to prove her hard work has paid off, but, even becoming a cherished American athlete hasn’t spared Biles the harsh criticism so freely shared by the online community. Opening up about attracting her own gathering of haters and critics, Simone is sharing just how cyber bullying has affected her life and what she has to say to those who would seek to knock her down with a bombardment of body shaming insults.
Simone Biles Fires Back At Her Haters With A Positive Message
Ms. Biles recently shared an image with her Instagram followers in which she’s seen wearing a white bathing suit with black shorts covering the bottom half of the one-piece swimwear outfit, reports People. Simone is smiling, happy to share the picture with her followers, which she took time away from her Belize vacation to post. The Olympic gold medal winner captioned the image with “living in bathing suits,” implying that most of her vacation was spent on the beaches.
That picture drew harsh criticism from cyber bullies, many of whom commented on Biles’ muscular physique and criticized Simone for her general appearance. One such critic told Biles that she was ugly, suggesting that the user, herself, was more attractive.
Not one to let body shaming bring her down, Simone chose to respond to her haters with a more positive message. Instead of launching a counter attack against the internet trolls, Ms. Biles, instead, let her critics know that she wasn’t affected by their spiteful words.
“You all can judge my body all you want, but at the end of the day it’s MY body,” Simone wrote in a tweet. “I love it and I’m comfortable in my skin.”
It wasn’t long before Biles received the love and support from her massive fanbase and her positivity seemed to sway even her most devoted haters. Simone even received a follow-up message from that user, who called her ugly in the previous post.
“I know what I did wasn’t right,” the commenter later wrote on Simone’s posting. “Clearly I was jealous of her. I mean can you blame me? She is beautiful. I wish my life was like hers. But I don’t think it’s right for all of you to talk about [me]. Yes I deserved [it], but we all do stupid things.”
Simone Biles Scores The Female Athlete Of The Year Award
While Simone does have a few haters trying to bring her down, it’s probably difficult to tarnish her self-esteem, when Ms. Biles is earning awards just for doing what she most loves. Chicago Tribune reports that, even after her Olympic wins, Simone is once again being honored, but, this time, as Female Athlete of the Year. For Biles, the events that earned her the newest honor are “kind of a blur,” but, for her fans, every moment is marked by Biles’ hard work and exemplary performances.
In earning the title of Female Athlete of the Year, Biles earned 31 out of a total possible 59 votes, surpassing U.S. Olympic swimmer Katie Ledecky, tennis pro Serena Williams, and NCAA women’s basketball Player of the Year Breanna Stewart.
Simone Biles is in good company. The honor of being named the Female Athlete of the Year has previously gone to four other female gymnasts: Olga Korbut (1972), Nadia Comaneci (1976), Mary Lou Retton (1984), and Gabby Douglas (2012).
Simone recently shared that she may be taking a break from gymnastics, though her plans for the future are uncertain. As the new year approaches, Biles plans to sit down and plot out her new goals, though she feels confident she would like to do something new.
“I miss training with the girls and having a good time,” Biles said. “Whenever I go to the gym to visit them and I see them, I do not miss this part at all right now.”
[Featured Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]