Mum reveals how she has been called a “monster” online since she lasers her baby’s large facial birthmark.
Originally from the Gold Coast, Brooke Atkins is a stay-at-home mom.
With her partner Kewene Wallace, 27, she has two children – a 2-year-old daughter named Amarni and a six-month-old baby boy named Kingsley.
In January, it became apparent Kingsley had a large port wine stain covering half of his face.
It is not uncommon for port-wine stain birthmarks to occur on the face and the eye area, but they can sometimes be associated with glaucoma or Sturge Weber Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder.
Seizures are associated with Sturge-Weber syndrome, while blindness can result from glaucoma.
Kingsley was diagnosed with both, and port wine stains will darken and change over time.
As Brooke explained to NeedToKnow.online: “They can develop a ‘cobblestone’ appearance, with raised bumps, ridges and the risk of vascular blebs, where they dangerously bleed.
“Once a port wine stain gets to this stage, it is often very difficult to treat and laser barely has any affect, as the skin is already far too damaged.”
It was decided by the family that later treatment would be given to Kingsley’s mark, on May 31.
Brooke said: “The only way to treat a port wine stain is through laser treatments and the most effective laser for a it is called a Pulsed Dye Laser.
“When he was first born, we were referred to the Queensland Children’s Hospital dermatology and vascular department, where they organise the first treatment and explain in further details why laser would be important.”
“The purpose of the laser treatments are not to ‘remove’ the birthmark but instead keep the skin healthy, to prevent any further damage to the area.”
In spite of Kingsley’s family’s amazement at him, TikTok trolls have called Brooke a “monster” for choosing to undergo treatment for her son.
Someone said: “Don’t think I could laser my baby.”
The other person commented: “That birthmark is barely visible, what you’re doing to him is horrible, it’s more for you than him.”
There was also someone who said: “Did you deadass laser a baby.”
“Brainwashed mother making her kid insecure the second he gets out the womb,” commented another user.
“Why is everyone supporting this,” said someone else.
Others have responded with support and encouragement.
There was a comment made: “You’re the mom and you know what is the best for him.”
A second commenter said: “He would’ve still looked as beautiful with or without the birthmark.”
As for the reception she has received online, Brooke said: “Honestly, when I first started reading the negative comments, I sat there for a good half an hour and cried to myself.
“I had a whole heap of mum guilt and it made me question my decision, even though I knew I was doing the right thing, the cruel words still played in my head.
“Thankfully for every negative comment, there were 100 positive, so it helped a lot!
“I just wish these people had known about the health issues connected to these types of birthmarks before writing these things, that this wasn’t for cosmetic reasons and that as parents, this was the hardest decision we have had to make.
“That the last six months have been extremely hard on us and reading these comments, actually do hurt – this is the last thing we need, judgment from those who have no understanding around my sons conditions.”
Source: 7 News