Facial Palsy UK
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What is your experience of peoples reactions abroad?

I was born with left side facial paralysis and had smile surgery when I was 5 years old. My face is a bit asymmetrical but I never thought it was THAT bad until I went on holiday in Barcelona and people were pointing and staring and making comments about me being ugly. Emotionally this trip has had a profound effect on me and although it was back in July I am still paying the price. I have tried not to let this deter me however from my big dream of travelling around Peru, Bolivia and Colombia and have booked to go away for 3 months from mid November. As this approaches though, a lot of fears are kicking in about how people may react in these countries, I had no problems in Thailand and would like to think I will have the same experience in South America but I would like to hear of peoples' experiences in these countries and others.

2 Replies

Hi Ikika,

Im sorry you have had such a horrid experience abroad! I'm not surprised it has affected you! I don't think i can really help you with your question as i don't really travel!

I actually do find it easier in places i don't know people to not care as much if there staring, i think maybe this is because i'm unlikely to see them again, where as in my home town in bothers me a lot more. But an experience of staring pointing and name calling where ever you are in the world does affect all of us, and in different ways!Good for you for not letting this stop you traveling still and i wish you a happy and safe experience!

Sorry i can't really answer your question!



Hey Ikkika! Glad to see another wonky face here! I was born with right-side facial paralysis and had smile surgery in my teenage years. I have never been abroad (I'm in the USA) but I have been stopped in the street and had people comment on my looks. Sometimes they were realky cruel (like that guy on the bus who said I looked like a cyclops) but a lot of the time they were positive. I just tell myself that people are staring because they think I'm gorgeous even if I know consciously that may not be true.


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