Model Iskra Lawrence on Her Instagram Response to Body Shamer: 'Sometimes When You Have a Bully You Have to Stand Up for Yourself'
Lawrence was afraid of what her young fans would think if they read the comments
“Sometimes when you have a bully you have to stand up for yourself,” Lawrence tells PEOPLE. “You need to say ‘FU’ sometimes to people. Online trolls are not okay. I was trying to make something positive out of it.”
“I never reply to anything. I always leave alone negative comments,” she says. “But my followers see this. I don’t want my followers to think they can’t be vocal.”
“That’s something I’ve learned from age and experience, there’s nothing wrong with sticking up for myself. But when someone puts it online – a comment young girls are going to read,” she says. “Some people from my fan pages messaged me and told me they felt really upset, so that response, it’s for everyone.”
With the help of a photographer and stylist, Lawrence came up with the photo that quickly gained almost 70 thousand likes. And for fun, she added a NSFW, slo-mo video of herself having a snack.
“This is for anyone who has ever been called FAT,” Lawrence writes in the caption. “I eat whatever I want in moderation. I will eat crisps but I’ll also make healthy home cooked meals and workout regularly. The message is who gives a F what anyone else thinks of you. YOU are the only one who decides yourself worth.”
“Let that be a lesson to people. You shouldn’t be saying those things,” Lawrence tells PEOPLE. “It’s not going to affect me. I’m still a confident person.”
• Reporting by SHEILA COSGROVE BAYLIS