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Teenage girl with psoriasis humiliated at swimming pool

Scarred from years of bullying, torment and judgement from others, it takes a lot of courage for Chloe-Lee Campbell to show her skin which is dotted with red spots from her psoriasis.

So when she decided to bravely step out for a day at the swimming pools with her family and boyfriend, the teenager was left devastated after she was publicly called out by a lifeguard.

‘I had just got undressed the lady came up to me, she didn’t pull me aside or anything, she didn’t even say hello, she just said to me ”have you got chicken pox or something contagious?” in front of everyone, so many people were looking at me,’ Chloe-Lee told Daily Mail Australia.

Chloe-Lee Campbell (pictured) lives with psoriasis and learned to love the skin she’s in

The condition causes raised plaques, which can be flaky, scaly, red and itchy (pictured)

The condition causes raised plaques, which can be flaky, scaly, red and itchy (pictured)

On a brave, rare outing to her local pools she was humiliated by a lifeguard who asked her if her condition was contagious

On a brave, rare outing to her local pools she was humiliated by a lifeguard who asked her if her condition was contagious

‘I thought they would be trained at least to pull you away or even say something before taking our money.

‘I was so embarrassed I just thought ”na, I can’t do this”. It was the first time I had tried in years.’ 

The 18-year-old said that despite her struggles to feel accepted, every so often she will be overcome with motivation to be seen with her condition, but something always goes wrong.   

‘It’s been so bad over the years that I won’t go anywhere, even in weather with 40 degree heat I’ll be out in hoddies and trackies and things like that.

Chloe was bullied all through school and at her lowest point thought about taking her own life 

Chloe was bullied all through school and at her lowest point thought about taking her own life 

‘I’ve never been confident but every time I’ve thought ‘I am going to get through this’ there’s always someone or something.

‘I don’t mind the looks, that doesn’t bother me as much because I have dealt with that for so many years. It makes me self-conscious, but it doesn’t bother me that badly.

‘It’s just when people come up and say stuff, how ignorant they are about it, how rude they are – that’s when I lose confidence,’ she said. 

Through her schooling Chloe suffered tremendously, being bullied so badly she contemplated suicide a number of times, and even recalls tying a noose. 

She is now inspired to speak out, raise awareness and hopes to move others to be brave 

She is now inspired to speak out, raise awareness and hopes to move others to be brave 

'This is who I am, I am going to have this for the rest of my life. I am going to have to get over it one day,' she told Daily Mail Australia 

‘This is who I am, I am going to have this for the rest of my life. I am going to have to get over it one day,’ she told Daily Mail Australia 

If she could express to the lifeguard how she made Chloe feel the teenager said she would want her to have demonstrated some discretion. 

‘I would want her to know how I feel, how self-conscious, and how horrible, and how embarrassed I felt. I want her to realise there are so many people out there like me, I hadn’t even realised until Mum made a Facebook post and others came out, but there are. 

‘I think she should be trained more and she should have taken me away.’ 

In spite of the negative experience she is now speaking out, choosing to be stronger and hoping to capture the attention of both the public and sufferers of anything outside the ‘normal’.  

‘This is who I am, I am going to have this for the rest of my life. I am going to have to get over it one day.’  

She encourages those with conditions that make them different to ‘be yourself, be brave and have hope that it does get better.’ 

WHAT IS PSORIASIS? 

Psoriasis is an immune condition that occurs when a sufferer’s skin cells are replaced in just a few days rather than the usual 21 to 28 days.

This causes an accumulation of skin cells that build up to form raised plaques, which can be flaky, scaly, red and itchy.

Some sufferers have a family history of the condition.

Triggers for flare-ups include stress, certain medication, hormonal changes and skin injury.

There is no cure.

Treatment usually starts with topical creams and gels.

Source: Psoriasis Association 



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