LaNiyah Bailey, six years old, has written a book called ‘Not fat because I wannabe.’ The book is her way of fighting back at the bullies who have called her names and teased her since the age of four. LaNiyah used to go home after pre school and sob into her mother’s arms. Her mother LaToya White, suggested that she write the book as a way to build her self confidence, but the book has been so skilfully written that LaNiyah has appeared on television and has gained a huge fan base on her website.
The six year old girl from Chicago, has had problems with her weight since the age of three, suffering at the hands of bullies from the age of four. Her parents did all they could to help control her weight, taking her to a nutritionist and encouraging exercise by taking her to a personal trainer, but the problem persisted. Eventually, tests suggested that the little girl may have a hormonal condition affecting her weight.
Children at her pre school called her ‘big fat elephant girl’ and ‘fatty pants’ but the taunts didn’t stop at children. Adults in the local food store would stare at LaNiyah, checking the food that her mum was buying to see if it was junk food. One daycare worker even called her ‘fatso’. Although the editor of the book wanted to make the book humorous in order to appeal to children, LaNiyah was insistent that the book was not funny. She said:
I don’t want it to be fun. It’s not funny.
Her father, who is a fireman, was incredibly touched by his daughters motivation and determination, saying:
As a firefighter, I’m obligated to protect people and it doesn’t matter what they look like. It hurts me that people don’t have that same decency or kindness toward my child.
LaNiyah wants to visit hospitals and distribute her book to children who aren’t able to buy it.