Those who are diagnosed with vitiligo early in their lives, grow up facing the harsh reality of getting bullied in school, encountering strange stares and overhearing unkind remarks. But, Abigail Anyida Adamu, from Abuja (Nigeria) has a different story to tell. She didn’t have to face any of such discrimination as she was diagnosed with vitiligo last February only.
Abigail is currently learning the push and pulls of the chronic skin disorder, but she is adamant to educate people about vitiligo. She recalls how she met us, “I used to browse the internet to get information on vitiligo until I recently saw a drawing Fold David have done of Daniel on Instagram. I did a further search where I found you (Unite for Vitiligo). After having contact with you and knowing more about Winnie Harlow, I wish I knew you guys earlier. And, I wish I could do more for vitiligo awareness.”
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Abigail did not know anything about vitiligo. When she first noticed a small patch on her face in 2017, she went to a cosmetologist as she thought it to be a reaction from the makeup she had been using. She was given a cream to clear the patch, but that didn’t work. She tried two other creams subsequently, but all failed to do any good. Soon, vitiligo started spreading faster than she expected.
Because spread was very rapid, Abigail used to forget that she had vitiligo until people started staring at her. As expected, people misunderstood her skin condition; they thought she had a fire burn while some asked annoying questions. Who can blame them? Vitiligo is a skin disorders many hold misconceptions about. “I was worried as well as tired to answer people’s questions about vitiligo,” Abigai recollects.
Abigail browsed the internet for some home remedies just before a friend asked her to try an oil, which worked for her and recovered 70% of her lost pigments.
Many people who have been shortly living with vitiligo (or those who have a very small percentage of vitiliginous skin) tend to shy away from being an advocate of vitiligo awareness. But, Abigail is not one of them. She comments: “Yes, many people on social media have accepted their vitiligo and are ready to tell their stories. In my case, I looked for a solution because I wanted to get my face back, but if I had gotten a platform like this before, I would have done more for vitiligo.”
Abigail is a Quantity Surveyor by profession. She is about to venture into the online transport business. We wish her all the best!