Lillie Penley
September 17, 2015 1:00 pm

Chloe Lukasiak is famous for her dancing, but there’s so much more about her to celebrate and admire than that. Chloe, a former star on Lifetime’s Dance Moms, has recently been making big waves in the dance community. In the past year alone, she has won Choice Dancer at the Teen Choice Awards and an Industry Dance Award. She has starred in five (!!!) successful music videos and has close to 700,000 YouTube subscribers on her personal channel — and she’s only 14!

If you’ve seen Dance Moms, then you’re familiar with the emotional toll that Abby Lee Miller, the coach of the competition dance team the show follows, takes on her students. In fact, Miller recently faced a lawsuit from a former student who claimed Miller had caused her emotional trauma. Chloe spent four seasons on Dance Moms, and Miller always was always tough on her, even calling her “replaceable” at times. But Chloe stuck it out — until Miller made an offensive comment about the appearance of Chloe’s eye. After that incident, Chloe’s mother drew the line and pulled Chloe from the show.

Miller’s comment was uncalled for in any case, but what didn’t know at the time was that Chloe was suffering from a rare condition known as silent sinus syndrome. The condition caused one of Chloe’s eyes to appear smaller than the other, and is not, as many people assumed, a “lazy” eye.

Chloe didn’t take Miller’s comments and she’s not staying silent about her condition. Instead of hiding it, she’s opening up in a big way in an attempt to education people about silent sinus syndrome. In a recent video she shared with Seventeen Magazine, Chloe opens up about her struggle with the condition. In it, she expresses the kinds of feelings that a lot of people battling uncommon health struggles face. In spite of everything has going for her (did you see the list of her accomplishments in the first paragraph?), her eye condition left her feeling incredibly self-conscious on a day-to-day basis. This is totally natural of course; who among us hasn’t struggled with confidence when it comes to our bodies? Miller’s uninformed comments (and similar comments from people on the Internet) about her “lazy eye” didn’t Chloe’s confidence struggles at first, but they did ultimately push her to open up about her condition in a brave and direct way. 

While this has clearly been a difficult experience for Chloe, fans have reacted with nothing but support. As one of those fans, I appreciate her openness, and her positive outlook remains an inspiration. In this era of the Internet and anonymous comments, Chloe’s story is a welcome reminder that we shouldn’t criticize others for their looks at all, and especially not without an understanding their situation.

To hear Chloe’s inspirational words, check out her full video:

(Image via Shutterstock.)

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