Jan. 20, 2015
Dear Bully (Open Letter)
Hey everyone...so this is now officially my first post of the 2015 year. ¡Feliz Año Nuevo! I hope everyone enjoyed their NYE celebration. I spent the New Year with my lady, some family, and my teammates. It was an entertaining night to say the least, surrounded by a good group of people. Good times.
Over the last two weeks, I have been involved with my “Charlie’s Angels” community program. If you’re not familiar with the ‘Charlie’s Angels” program, basically...it’s a meet & greet program that I’ve been hosting since I was a rookie typically taking place on the road. I get the blessed opportunity to hang out with a group of children and their parents affected by the skin condition: Alopecia Areata, which I’ve had since I was 10. Alopecia is an autoimmune skin disease, which results in hair loss on the scalp and/or elsewhere on the body. In my case, I have the alopecia universalis type, which results to complete hair loss, head-to-toe.
It’s crazy to me, but there are a lot of people out there that still think I shave my eyebrows...SMH! It’s crazy when I think about it...10 years in the league and I must have met thousands of kids and folks from all over dealing with alopecia, and yet still people wonder. As the spokesperson for the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, it’s my job to encourage these kids and even adults, give them the confidence and hope they can overcome alopecia. The biggest ordeal that I constantly come across with, whether it’s from the kids themselves or from the parents...for the most part they all same the thing...one of their biggest struggles is being ‘accepted’. Being accepted in today’s ruthless society. This had me thinking....
I wrote a letter to all those faceless, gutless bullies. I was bullied throughout my childhood because of alopecia. Let me tell you something...being made fun of or being teased for the way you look, for being different, is one of the most ignorant and ugliest characters in human life. So for all you bullies out there...out in the school yard, out in the street corner, and those even online, Mr. Cyber Bully, I have something to tell you:
You are a sad being. You have been making fun of me since the age of 10, and 20 years later today you continue to try to do so. When are you going to grow up? You think it's cool to make fun of others because of how they look...makes no sense and makes you really small. You don’t know me. You don’t know nothing about it. Through this adversity it help me become the ball player and the man I am now. You think sending me negative tweets or Facebook messages online affects me...you are wrong my friend; cracking jokes, laughing at me or others because I don’t have eyebrows or because my bald head is going to make you feel better about yourself...you are just sad and you need help. We all make mistakes, but that’s not a way to live. That’s not a way to behave. God made us all equal and regardless of our physical difference, we should treat and respect each other equally. I’m writing this to you in hopes you realize the damage you’re doing...not to me, but to yourself. Look at yourself in the mirror and repeat those comments to yourself...it’s not cool. Respect your peers. And before you have something negative to say to someone, think about what you say first before you speak. God help you.
PS. Bald is beautiful. And I’m free to be me.
Okay...had to get that off my chest lol. This world is just filled with too much ignorance and we need more love. I had to say something. I pray and hope those people can wake up for 2015. Happy New Year once again. Be nice ;)
Charlie Villanueva #believeincharlie
PS—Wanna say RIP Stuart Scott. I got a few chances to meet the man and he was full of life and passion. My brother, Rob C., actually worked with him at ESPN and he told me that the night I scored 48 points my rookie year Stu said, “Your brother can’t get 2 more? FIFTY sounds better on TV”. LOL. One of my close friends is also close with Stu and all he says is how genuine and golden the man was. RIP my man. Your legacy in sports and your fight will live forever, Boo-yah!