Paulini Shared A Heart-Wrenching Story On ‘I’m A Celebrity’ Of Being Racially Bullied In School
In a heart-wrenching moment on I’m A Celebrity last night, Paulini confided in fellow contestant Jack Vidgen that she was racially bullied in primary school, which she described as an “awful time” in her life.
“I’ve never talked about it in here but I got bullied….for being black. And it was bad. So when that Black Lives Matter thing happened [last year], it really hit home for me and it brought back a lot of really bad memories,” she began.
The singer went on to say that she was bullied by students, parents, and even teachers, she was called racial slurs like ‘Blackie’, and accused of stealing other student’s lunches. Paulini shared one particularly disturbing experience when a student “walked up to me and spat in my sandwich.” She added that since leaving school, “I don’t know if I’ve ever really dealt with it. I don’t think I have because I feel like maybe it has a lot to do with how I am now.”
Paulini revealed that after finding fame on Australian Idol, the school invited her back to speak to the students, but she declined their offer. “No way in the world would I ever step near that school. Like, that’s how bad the whole experience was for me,” she said.
Watch the full conversation below:
It’s a harrowing story, but an important conversation to be had on such a wide-reaching platform, as Australia has a long way to go in addressing racist attitudes.
I’m A Celebrity viewers have applauded Paulini for sharing her story, after having to endure such disgusting treatment in school:
— sylvana (@Sylch16) January 11, 2021
Awww that’s so traumatic for Paulini and I’m so sorry she had those experiences. Just fucked behaviour amd good on her for not going back to that horrible place #ImACelebrityAU
— Jeanette (@frvjana) January 11, 2021
I hope your bullies are watching you right now and realise how beautiful and talented you are and how much your life has changed, How far you have come and how much you are thriving ! You’re killing it girl , keep it up. And remember Australia loves you 💋 #ImACelebrityAU
— K ❥ (@spsbcb) January 11, 2021
Poor Paulini. She's been through a lot.
People really need to do better. I want to give her a massive hug. #ImACelebrityAU
— Melissa Blackwood (@lilmissmel) January 11, 2021
— Jacinta (@CaptainJacFrost) January 11, 2021
We love you, Paulini!!!
— Ainsley Vigar (@AinsleyVigar) January 11, 2021