Iowa Teenager Wants Surgery For New Smile, Hopes to Stop Bullying
She was born with facial palsy. After years of bullying, that has intensified in recent years, she wants to have surgery that she hopes will make the bullying stop.
Her name is Liberty Williams. She's from Glenwood, in extreme west-central Iowa, just southeast of Omaha, Nebraska. Liberty is tired of being bullied and is ready to undergo surgery, hoping that changing the way she looks will put a stop to it.
In a post, her mom, Dusty, explained that doctors determined nothing could be done about the nerve damage in Liberty's face until she turned 13. It would also allow her daughter to make the decision of what, if anything, would be done.
When she was just four years old, Liberty asked her mom, "Do I have a crooked smile?" It was a heartbreaking moment for her mom.
As you can imagine, it hasn't been easy for Liberty. During an interview with KETV in which tears were streaming down her face, she said,
It was hard because I know I’m different from other people and people would just see me differently than I do, so I just want to be seen as normal and have a normal mouth but it’s hard when people keep saying things.
The bullying has gotten worse. An anonymous text delivered through an app perhaps was the last straw for Liberty. It's so disgusting I don't want to print it, but is partially included in the video at the bottom of this story.
Dusty Williams got complete cooperation from the Glenwood School District as they tried to determine who sent the text. Thus far, they haven't been successful. Dusty says after that text, "Liberty's mental health took a huge tumble."
Liberty just wants the bullying to stop. Shortly before she received the text, Liberty had gone into surgery for a procedure on her face. The surgeon determined the right side of Liberty's face has no nerves or muscles. It seemed there was nothing that could be done.
The Williams' then found a plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills that specializes in situations like Liberty's. He has agreed to take her on as a patient. The procedure will not be covered by insurance so Dusty started a GoFundMe page to raise money for the surgery. Nearly $7,700 of the $10,000 goal has been raised as of 1 p.m. Friday, January 28.
A specific comment from Liberty in the interview broke my heart. She said, "I think if I got the surgery I'd be happier with my smile but I feel like other people are winning if I do."
I'm almost positive that perhaps even more important than all the money that's been donated on the GoFundMe page are the thoughts people have shared with their donations. They remind us there are plenty of wonderful people out there, willing to share their love.