Krista Miranda

By Krista Miranda

LifeBuzz Staff

Model Told To Bleach Her Dark Skin Is Taking Instagram By Storm.

Uber Awkward

Uber Awkward

Pinterest

When Nyakim Gatwech called an Uber, she never thought she’d set herself on a crash course with history. Little did she know, getting in that car was like entering her worst nightmare. And "nightmare" would be the best way to describe it, because she had never met anyone quite like this driver. But when Nyakim later found out who he really was, and how he got that way, she thought he had lost his mind. And just when the model had no doubt lost all hope, he asked her to do something that had her scrambling for her phone.

The Nightmare Continues

The Nightmare Continues

EU ECHO / Flickr

Sadly for Nyakim, this was not her first nightmare. Back when she was just starting out on her journey in America, things for Nyakim were very difficult. Having originated from South Sudan, one of the poorest countries in the world, as well as taking refuge in Ethiopia before the family made their way to America, there was very little that Nyakim hadn't experienced in terms of hardships. At least that is what she thought.

Coming To America

Coming To America

Nyakim Gatwech / Pinterest

In 2007, Nyakim, her mother, and her siblings arrived in Minneapolis, Minnesota. For them, it was a safe haven from all the difficulties they had faced in Africa. "America is education, food, hospitals, not feeling like your child will pass away because there’s no medical care,” she writes. But their new country came with its own set of challenges.

Miserable At School

Miserable At School

Nyakim Gatwech / Instagram

After Nyakim enrolled in high school in Minneapolis, she was bullied for the first time for the color of her skin. Kids would say things like, “You black as hell, take a shower.” When teachers asked her questions in class, other students replied, “Who are you talking to? We can’t see her. She’s not here.” She spent countless schooldays crying. People said she was ugly, and she was starting to believe it. Even worse, she was starting to consider extreme measures.

Close To Rock Bottom

Close To Rock Bottom

Nyakim Gatwech / Instagram

Recalling a time when two random men made a bet to see if she was wearing leggings or if her skin really was that dark, Nyakim acknowledges how she had internalized the colorism she faced. “There was a time in my life where I considered bleaching myself to avoid the dirty looks, the laughter, and for boys to find me attractive,” she says. But, luckily, there were people in her life who wouldn’t let her stop loving herself.

Page 1 of 4