Teen With Down’s Syndrome Went On The Undateables And It Changed Her Life Forever
A woman who went on her first ever date thanks to the Channel 4’s, The Undateables, has revealed how her life has changed forever.
Bethany, now aged 22, went on the dating show a year ago after suffering with low self-esteem.
Her mum Bekki said over the year before, Bethany had become ‘increasingly insecure’ about her appearance and had ‘self-confidence issues’.
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According to the Daily Record, when Bethany was 18-years-old, Bekki had gone into her daughter’s bedroom, expecting to find her reading or listening to music but instead, found her sitting in front of her mirror with tears streaming down her cheeks.
Watching on as her friends enjoyed their first kisses, Bekki said Bethany felt sidelined and blamed her Down’s syndrome, asking why she ‘looked different’.
Bethany was fed up of being told she was everyone’s mate and said all she wanted was true love.
Her words broke my heart into a thousand pieces. She asked me why she had to have Down’s syndrome and told me she was ugly.
I never wanted her to feel different and I wished there was something I could do to convince Beth she was the most incredible, beautiful young lady I’d ever met, and that somewhere out there, there was a boy who would agree with me.
But no teenager wants to hear their mother tell them they’re beautiful. What she needed was to hear it from a boy.
Bekki said she always knew she’d have to explain to her ‘intelligent, hilarious daughter’ what Down’s syndrome was and said she hoped she taught Beth it was something that made her the amazing girl she is:
I didn’t ever want her to resent Down’s syndrome because for our family, Down’s syndrome had given us an extraordinary young woman.
A few weeks later, the family were sat together watching The Undateables when Bethany’s face ‘lit up’ – she decided she wanted to go on the show.
I was open to the idea. A lot of people find the title offensive, but fans know as soon as the credits roll, the ‘Un’ in ‘Undateables’ is hit by Cupid’s arrow, leaving the word ‘dateables’ behind – which is exactly what Bethany was.
She was a catch!
Bekki set about emailing the show’s production company and told them all about Bethany. They then had a Skype interview and she was successfully cast for the programme.
Bethany was set up with a man called Bradley, the pair got on but after their date, Bethany didn’t hear from him.
Bekki said luckily, Bethany wasn’t disheartened, and the show set her up with a student called Myles from Nottingham, who also has Down’s syndrome:
Beth knew Myles wasn’t right for her. She thought he was too young for her to have a future with.
He liked darts and pool, while Bethany liked singing and dancing. She wanted to hold out for someone she had more in common with.
The show finally aired in January last year and Bethany received tonnes of messages of support and love and Bekki said she was up until 3am answering messages.
A few weeks later, Bekki’s sister-in-law got in touch to say her friend was a support worker who looked after a man called Tom, who like Bethany, has Down’s syndrome.
According to the Daily Record, Tom had been watching The Undateables when Bethany appeared and was ‘mesmerised’ when he saw her.
When Bekki and Bethany met up with Tom and his mum, the first thing to come out of Tom’s mouth was to tell Bethany she was ‘beautiful’.
I don’t know who fell in love with him faster, me or Beth. It’s been over a year and they’ve been madly in love ever since. Tom is always telling Beth she is beautiful.
Bekki said Bethany’s communication skills are ‘advanced’ but Tom is more limited, yet they have this ‘amazing rapport’.
She credits The Undateables for helping Bethany to love herself, so ‘by the time Tom came along and swept her off her feet, she was ready for him’.
Bethany said she finally knows what love feels like, adding:
I used to be so lonely. I was jealous of people who were in love because I wanted to know what love felt like.
Now I know – love feels like Champagne. I love everything about Tom. He’s kind, gentle and romantic. He’s so handsome and he’s a great kisser!
I enjoyed going on the show, it was amazing and so much fun.
I was treated like royalty. But the best part was that it led me to Tom.
The words happily ever after spring to mind!