Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall recalls horrific racial abuse as vile bully put bindi on her forehead
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Jade Thirlwall has opened up on the racial abuse she suffered while growing up.
The 27 year old, who recently threw shade at Jess Glynne after her restaurant "discrimination" claims, recalled a specific event where a vile bully once put a bindi on her forehead.
The Little Mix star, who has Egyptian-Yemeni heritage, told Vogue Arabia: "During one incident someone pinned me down in the toilets and put a bindi spot on my forehead.
"There was a complete lack of education and understanding of different races and faiths.
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Jade, who grew up in South Shields, added: "It affected my mental health. I became very depressed and it triggered the eating disorder I had throughout school."
The Break Up Song hitmaker went on to confess she put white make-up on her face for school productions in an attempt to "blend in" with her fellow students.
"Looking back, I realise I experienced microaggressions even as a kid, whether it was being part of musicals in my hometown and having white powder put on my face to blend in with the rest of the cast, or not getting cast at all because there were no people of colour in the musical," she said.
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The star, who recently stunned in snaps from her collection with Skinny Dip, continued: "It wasn't until I moved to London and into a multicultural environment that I realised how messed up it was."
Jade explained that the bullying she experienced made her feel ashamed of her own identity as she said: "At school, I didn’t fit into any group, and started to experience prejudice and racism.
"I was one of the very few people of colour in the school, so from the off I felt like an outcast.
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"Where I'm from in England, if you weren't evidently black or white, you were put in this big bowl of one 'other' thing.
"I used to get called the P-word, which I didn't understand as I'm not Pakistani. I was also called half-caste."
The singer added: "I had suppressed who I was because I wasn't proud. I had been bullied into thinking I should be ashamed of my identity."
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Jade is now trying to learn Arabic and has vowed to be more outspoken about her heritage after the Black Lives Matter movement and the war in Yemen, which "triggered a lot of trauma" for her mother Norma.
“When I was younger, I didn’t see enough representation of Arabs in magazines or on TV, and when I saw people who looked like my granddad they were always misrepresented," she said.
“There’s this stereotype of Muslims being terrorists. I regret now that I didn’t talk about it more, but I was young and scared.”
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