Jada Pinkett Smith is here to help others cope with the hair loss condition, alopecia.
The “Gotham” actress, 50, recently sat down with Niki Ball, the mother of 12-year-old girl Rio, who tragically ended her young life after being bullied about her alopecia. The severe, escalating abuse the girl was subjected to reportedly included being “hit on the head” by other students, being called names such as “naked mole rat” and even having her wig “ripped off her head.” ” became.
Rio committed suicide on March 14, 2022.
In a clip from an upcoming tear-jerking episode of Pinkett Smith’s Facebook watch show Red Table Talk, obtained by People, Ball explained that during the coronavirus pandemic, Rio contracted alopecia and her hair “handfuls” started falling out .
It started with a bald patch on her scalp, and shortly after, Rio was diagnosed with alopecia areata.
The condition is categorized as an autoimmune disease that causes hair to fall out in clumps. Pinkett Smith has had the disease since 2018.
Interest in the Scream 2 star’s hair condition skyrocketed after Pinkett Smith’s shaved head was teased by comedian Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars on March 28.
Rock, 57, suggested at the time that the Baltimore native looked like “GI Jane” just before her husband Will Smith slapped him on stage.
Ball noted that with her hair loss, Rio was “so strong. She was still rocking it even when it fell out and she just had these big bald spots. [She] tried the creams. You made her erupt. Tried the injections – she took five of them in one day. But none of them really did anything.”
After trying various remedies, nothing seemed to work. So the mother-daughter duo decided to shave the latter’s head – with positive results.
“She just glowed,” Ball said.
When it came time for Rio to go back to school, she was excited to wear a wig. “We got her this super cute wig, she loved it and she was glowing at the time,” she added. However, Rio quickly changed her mind once she started taking classes.
“Within a couple of weeks she was like, ‘I don’t want to wear it anymore; There’s no point,’” her mother recalled. “She ripped it off her head.”
Rio’s harassment grew worse. One person even “hit her head on the head.” [while] go down the hall. And that within the first two weeks, three weeks. It got really bad for her.”
Other insults children hurled at her included calling her a “naked mole rat,” a “bug-eyed alien,” and “Mr. and Ms. Clean.”
Three weeks before Rio’s death, Ball commented that her daughter was having “a really bad day” at school and “just lost it” when she picked her up from class.
“I knew it was very serious,” Ball said.[Her death] was the worst day of my life.”
Emmy winner Pinkett Smith then sobbed alongside Ball, explaining that Rio’s story is one of the reasons others “need to understand the devastation of this condition.”
If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or having a mental health crisis and live in New York City, you can call 1-888-NYC-WELL for free and confidential crisis counseling. If you live outside of the five counties, you can call the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to SuicidePreventionLifeline.org.
https://nypost.com/2022/05/31/jada-pinkett-smith-cries-with-mom-of-girl-with-alopecia-who-died-by-suicide/ Jada Pinkett Smith cries with the mother of a girl with alopecia who died by suicide