Instagram Model ‘Terrified’ After Her ‘Biggest Fan’ Turned Up At Her House
Vera Dijkmans earns more than €500,000 per year, but also deals with scary fans turning up at her home in the middle of the night – being an Instagram model comes at a price.
The 22-year-old, from the Netherlands, comes from a humble background, having been raised by a single mother who struggled to make ends meet following a divorce.
Now 17 years later, Vera is an online star with millions of followers. However, that worldwide adoration can sometimes go too far, with over 50 marriage proposals flooding in everyday, and even the odd hardcore fan demanding to be let in to her home.
Vera dropped out of high school at the age of 14 and worked several minimum wage jobs, earning between €8 to €10-an-hour. However, she always had bigger aspirations, with a passion for dance.
At the age of 18, Vera took a leap towards achieving her goal, hopping on a plane to Los Angeles for dance lessons at some of the state’s top performing arts schools. There, she met up with famous photographers with huge Instagram followings – inspiring a change to her career path.
In 2016, she started her own Instagram account – now, four years later, Vera has amassed more than 1.4 million followers on her page @veradijkmans.
Speaking about her transition from dancing into modelling, Vera said: ‘When I was a teenager my dream was to be a backup dancer for famous artists. Between the ages of 14 to 18, my mental state hit rock bottom and I had a hard time getting my life together. It wasn’t until I was eighteen and went to LA when I knew what I wanted.’
My fans sometimes tell me they would move to the Netherlands just to meet me once. They are mostly between the ages of 18-30 which is my main audience. While it is mostly men sliding in my DMs, it’s sometimes women too. I get around 50 marriage proposals a day. As far as gifts from fans, the weirdest thing I have received a ring sent to me with a note asking me to marry the person.
One fan went too far, though. Vera was once woken up in the middle of the night by a stranger knocking on her door, repeatedly calling out her name and proclaiming he was her biggest fan. He then begged her to open the door for almost an hour, before leaving her property.
Naturally, she was terrified by the experience, and says she has no idea how the follower found her address. ‘He went on for about 45 mins, then he left and I never saw him again. It was a terrifying experience,’ she added.
The million-strong audience has its drawbacks, with people sending nasty messages ‘making assumptions about me and how I live my life’. Vera added: ‘It irritates me that people sometimes wrongly assume that I have a sugar daddy paying for my trips, because everything is paid for by me.’
Vera did offer up a small kernel of advice to aspiring Instagram models: ‘Post as much as possible and try to really connect with your fans. It’s really all about engagement.’ But, evidently, not that type of engagement.
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