Lizzie Velasquez is our hero!
The 24-year-old has taken what many would view as a handicap and turned it on its head, becoming a hugely successful motivational speaker and an inspiration to us all—Popdust has an exclusive interview.
In the first segment of our three part interview, Lizzie opens up about bullying, love, dating and her ideal man!
As previously reported, Lizzie suffers from an extremely rare medical condition that’s similar to progeria—it’s so rare in fact that only two other people are believed to have it.
She has zero percent body fat and has never weighed more than 60 pounds as she is unable to gain weight despite consuming an average of 5,000 kilocalories daily. She has a weak immune system and is blind in her right eye with limited vision in her left.
Despite a barrage of online hate and cyber bullying (a video posted to YouTube dubbing Lizzie “The World’s Ugliest Woman” garnered millions of views and hateful anonymous comments) she has embarked on a successful career as a motivational speaker.
Lizzie candidly answers Popdust’s questions.
Did you suffer from a lot of bullying growing up?
There wasn’t any physical bullying, no kids ever pushed me or tried to trip me or anything like that. It was mostly just name-calling, the other girls would point at me and giggle and say, “Look at that girl!”
It changed as I was older, I could understand more of what was going on. I started making a lot more friends. With the help of them on my side it really lessened everything that was going on.
I honestly just was myself, I didn’t do anything different at all, I wasn’t acting “bad” so I could be a “cool kid”, I wasn’t changing myself so that other kids would like me. I just continued to be myself and I made friends.
Are you dating? What would be your ideal date?
I’m not dating right now – my schedule is so insane. I would like to but right now there is no time!
My ideal guy is someone who is funny and has the same values as me and gets along with my family, and I get along with his family… you know, just a laid back kind of guy. I don’t have crazy standards!
My ideal date would be going out to dinner, drinks, maybe a movie – you can tell a lot about people from the type of movies they watch. Then a walk, just to talk and get to know each other.
Who is your “perfect” man?
Bill Rancic! I love Bill Rancic so so much!
The fact that he is a motivational speaker… I studied him when I was first trying to get into the speaking world. I studied his techniques, everything I could. I have the biggest crush on him!
I saw a picture of him speaking to probably about 3000 people and that was my goal, I wanted to beat it. I wanted to have that moment where you’re in front of all those people. And I did it last year, it was 5000 people.
I haven’t met Bill, sadly! Not yet!
In the meantime, you can learn more about Lizzie by visiting her website