Exclusive: Abbie Chatfield on dealing with online negativity

Exclusive: Abbie Chatfield On Dealing With Online Negativity

Plus her message for those who attack others on the Internet

Beauty Crew Digital Content Editor / December 23 2019

Life post-The Bachelor hasn’t exactly been a walk in the park for Queensland beauty Abbie Chatfield. Although she has a huge (and loyal!) fan base, following her appearance on the reality television dating show, Abbie has also copped a heap of hate online.

But, throughout the experience, she’s kept her chin up and has continued to let her sunny personality and cheeky sense of humour shine through. And, that’s not all – Abbie has used her newfound fame as a platform to speak out on issues close to her heart, calling out body shamers and advocating for self-confidence.

So of course, we wanted to know how she does it. Below, Abbie shares all her best advice on dealing with online negatively plus her message for Internet trolls in our exclusive interview.

So I uploaded my last post a few hours ago, honestly, because I liked how my body looked. I chose those photos because I thought I looked the "hottest" in them. We all do it, subconsciously or not. Everyone on Instagram posts with some element of vanity, but looking back from my photos taken today, these are my favourites. I was having such a good day at the beach, having a laugh, with my sunburnt and peeling head, cheesy smile, acne scarring, cellulite and stretch marks. I used to hate the way I looked when I laughed in photos, I thought my nose was too big and my teeth stuck out too much, but seeing these makes me happy. I want to make more of an effort to post content that makes me feel happy, so I can look back and think more than "I looked hot". I still am empowered by posting photos of myself that I think I look BOMB in, but I also want happy photos to sometimes take the spotlight. So here are some happy snaps from today 🥰 If you feel like you use Instagram in a similar way to me, then have a crack at posting photos of yourself looking HAPPY, even if you don't think you look your "best" and tag me so I can see!
So I uploaded my last post a few hours ago, honestly, because I liked how my body looked. I chose those photos because I thought I looked the "hottest" in them. We all do it, subconsciously or not. Everyone on Instagram posts with some element of vanity, but looking back from my photos taken today, these are my favourites. I was having such a good day at the beach, having a laugh, with my sunburnt and peeling head, cheesy smile, acne scarring, cellulite and stretch marks. I used to hate the way I looked when I laughed in photos, I thought my nose was too big and my teeth stuck out too much, but seeing these makes me happy. I want to make more of an effort to post content that makes me feel happy, so I can look back and think more than "I looked hot". I still am empowered by posting photos of myself that I think I look BOMB in, but I also want happy photos to sometimes take the spotlight. So here are some happy snaps from today 🥰 If you feel like you use Instagram in a similar way to me, then have a crack at posting photos of yourself looking HAPPY, even if you don't think you look your "best" and tag me so I can see!

How were you treated online following The Bachelor?

“During the airing of the show, things were really hard, with people throwing any insult they could at me. After airing though, when I was given an opportunity to show my real self and people have responded really well. The love outweighs the hate so I am really happy I did it! There are still people who comment on my body and how I look, or have some sort of hate toward me for no tangible reason, but they are easy to overlook.”

How did it make you feel?

“At the time when things were really bad, I felt awful. I still don’t understand how some people are able to write such vile and hateful things on the page of someone they don’t know, and there were some journalists that participated in it too, which was both confronting and disappointing. I had amazing support from my friends and family, though, so I made it through and have come out stronger. I am really lucky that I have such a great support system.”

"Being stoked about the unusually hot day at the beach and then remembering it's because climate change is coming for us all" - An Australian Millennial Story
"Being stoked about the unusually hot day at the beach and then remembering it's because climate change is coming for us all" - An Australian Millennial Story

What would you like people who may be getting body-shamed or attacked online to know, or those who might go through the same thing in the future? Do you have any advice for them?

“Ugh, it’s so hard. Even though I’m confident in myself and in the way I look, it has taken years to get to this place. I have hated my body for as long as I can remember, and only in the past year have I begun to really appreciate it. I think that people who body shame, who make these comments, come from one of two places; they are either insecure about their own body and are projecting their self-hatred onto you, or they are coming from a place of privilege and lack basic empathy. Neither group deserves your energy, though I do think it’s important to call them out when you can if you have the strength.”

“My only advice is to remember that you exist in this world to live a happy life, to make yourself and others happy, regardless of what others say. There is no one in this world who is happier than you who is insulting you. Ignore the negativity and keep living for yourself, you are the only person you have to impress in this life.”

On Wednesdays we wear pink but on Tuesdays we wear our fav @scrunchiegalofficial hair accessories 💕👛👚👙💅🏻 Use code ABBIE10 for 10% off 🥂🥂
On Wednesdays we wear pink but on Tuesdays we wear our fav @scrunchiegalofficial hair accessories 💕👛👚👙💅🏻 Use code ABBIE10 for 10% off 🥂🥂

What is your message to trolls/people who attack others online?

“I don’t see what they get from being so horrible to people online. Mostly I feel sorry for them and I just hope they go to therapy, because anyone who is that angry needs to see a professional to sort out why they do these things.”

Slide Away
Slide Away

Chrissy Teigen has also been a powerful advocate against online trolls. Check out her response to a Twitter troll criticising her painting her nails here.

What do you think of Abbie's advice? Let us know in the comments.

Main image credit: @abbiechatfield

Isobel is a Digital Content Editor at BEAUTYcrew, marie claire and InStyle. When she's not busy hunting for the latest beauty news, you’ll find her arranging her skincare collection in search of the perfect “shelfie.” Isobel was previously BEAUTYcrew's Junior Beauty Writer.