Going to a water park has always been one of the most common things families do to enjoy the holidays or simply have a fun vacation. That was the reason this woman decided to spend some quality time with her family by bringing them to a water park. Everyone was so happy, peaceful, relaxing, and having fun. The place was so full of kids running around, people splashing water onto one another, families taking turns enjoying the slides, and other sights that could usually be seen in a water park. However, things somehow began going downhill for this particular woman – she was forced to step out of the establishment. Why was she kicked out? How did she react? Keep on reading to know the answers to those questions and see how things went for that woman that day.
Her Name Is Madelyn Scheaffer
This woman lived by the name Madelyn Scheaffer. Along with her family, she lived in the city of Odessa located in Missouri. She had always been known as an amazing and loving mother by her family and friends. However, all of the positive characteristics people knew about her were strained and ruined in a snap by a single incident that happened in the middle of her 30s.
We can see that the incident was really bad to the point that the water park was affected. Even several years already passed after the incident, everyone working for the water park did their best to make up for what happened. At this point, you might already be wondering what exactly happened in that water park, but first, let me give you a history check about Madelyn Scheaffer.
It Was Time To Make A Decision
One day in 2005, Madelyn was about to give herself a good bath until she accidentally slipped and fell into the tub. Her fall was really bad and that was proven as the doctors diagnosed her and found that she was suffering from a slipped disc. For your information, a slipped disc, which is also known as a herniated disc, is an injury of the spine where a bone was dislocated out of its original position. This injury causes severe back pain.
Because of what happened, she had been suffering every day. She felt a lot of pain – she felt that she could not function well as a person. That was what motivated her to do a change for herself. She could not take it anymore. She was very determined to change her lifestyle for her to go back to her old self or at least, close to her old self.
It Was A Sign
On the day of the accident, the ambulance arrived at her home a few minutes after her family saw her situation and called for help. However, Madelyn sent all of them away. She did not want to be helped – she did not want to be moved from her position. Why? It was because the fall hurt Madelyn so much to the point that she could not even move. In fact, she managed to stay in that bathtub, in that position, for two days before finally going to the hospital with the help of rescuers.
A Sense Of Calm
During those two days, Madelyn did her best to be strong for her family. She felt a sense of calm as she just laid on her tub. She had the chance to reflect alone. She eventually realized that she really had been a strong mother to the point that she forgot about herself. She was too focused on her family – she always put herself last in her priorities, maybe that was also one of the reasons why she decided to stay there and not go with the emergency workers who came.
She Was Determined To Change
After the accident, she could not take all the sufferings she had been experiencing anymore. She realized that she had to lose weight. She gathered all of her determination and patience as she started her journey to lose some pounds.
Best Shape Of Her Life
She started doing some activities that would make her lose weight such as having a strict and healthy diet. After all the things that she did with determination and consistency, within two years, Madelyn managed to cut 100 lbs off her body! Five years after she lost so much weight, she did her best to maintain that and she successfully did.
Mustering The Bravery To Do It
Losing a hundred pounds really gave her lots of confidence. As she reached the 43rd year of her life, her weight peaked at 170 lbs. One day came and she decided to bring her family to Adventure Oasis Water. What made her more excited was the fact that she was wearing a bikini – it was her first time wearing such a piece of clothing. Little did she know that she was about to face something that would completely ruin her day.
Someone Was Watching Her
As she stepped at the entrance of the water park, she saw a bunch of people walking around in the clothing they preferred. What made her feel good was the fact that she did not feel conscious at all. She was so confident about herself and how she looked. Well, she did not know that someone had an eye on her as she was walking around the water park – he or she was watching her for quite some time already.
Confidence is Key
Unlike before, Madelyn did not feel insecure about how she looked. She was very confident about herself. She even managed to expose herself in a bikini to hundreds of people without worrying about being judged by others. That just proved how much she felt way more confident after losing tons of weight.
She Could Not Believe It
She was excited to have a dip into the waters of Adventure Oasis Water Park. She put her towel on a bench and immediately went into the water – she was very excited to swim. A few minutes after, she saw two female employees approaching her. All of the words that came out of their mouths shook Madelyn to the core.
Employees Say What
Hearing what the employees said for the first time, Madelyn was so confused. She asked the employees to say everything that they said again because she thought that she only misheard everything. Little did she know that every single word that she heard was all true. After hearing the employees for the second time, Madelyn was put in a moment of shock.
Her “Inappropriate” Outfit
The employees did their best to explain to Madelyn that she was wearing an inappropriate swimsuit. They claimed that her bikini was too small and exposing. They said that what she was wearing was inappropriate because the water park was intended for families to enjoy – her bikini might be too revealing for the children in the water park. Madelyn was not pleased by anything the employees just said.
According To Who’s Standards?
Madelyn thought that she was wearing an appropriate outfit. The two employees’ explanation made her look at other women and see what they were wearing – she even saw other girls wearing bikinis that were way more revealing than hers. She realized that there was something wrong. She was so confused.
She Felt Violated
All she felt was embarrassment and anger. The two employees saying that her bikini was inappropriate when there were other women in the park wearing much more revealing clothes really made her so confused. After all that she had been through just to gain more confidence about herself, she felt violated by the employees.
Taking A Stand
Minutes after being confused and plainly embarrassed, she felt some anger in her senses. She realized that there was something wrong about what the employees did. She was mad about the fact that she was called out for wearing something she was very comfortable with.
They Singled Her Out
She frankly said that she knew that the only difference that she had with all those girls wearing way more revealing bikinis than her was her body. She clearly said that she was very comfortable with the bikini that she was wearing and nobody could stop her from choosing something she wanted.
Embracing Your Body
She directly asked the employees to point out what was wrong with her bikini that was not wrong with all of the bikinis other women were wearing in the park. They explained that her bottoms were too small when in fact, it was a full-size bottom. It was discrimination. Each and every person in this world should be given the chance to choose what they want to wear. People should not be ashamed of their bodies.
Time To Take A Stand
She saw some people and employees in the water park looking at her, very intrigued by what was happening. After all that she had been through just to achieve the body she had always wanted, Madelyn confidently stood up and said her sentiments.
Standing Up For Herself
Madelyn knew that what was happening to her was discrimination. She did not hold back. With all the confidence that she gained after losing a hundred pounds, she took a stand against the employees. She said everything she wanted to say about how everyone should not be discriminated against by people just because of their choice of clothing and how everyone should not be ashamed of their bodies.
They Gave Her Two Options
The two female employees also stood by what they believed in – Madelyn’s bikini was inappropriate. They made her pick between two choices: a. wear a less revealing pair of shorts or b. simply leave the water park. The employees’ actions made Madelyn more displeased. She immediately requested the supervisor’s presence.
Even though she still felt embarrassed and humiliated, she stood strong not just for herself, but also for other women all around the world who were experiencing the same struggle. She firmly said to the water park’s supervisor that she would never wear additional clothing just to make her bikini less revealing. She was very confident about it and she would not let anyone break that confidence. Also, she said that they would need to call the police in order to make her leave the establishment.
She Was Booted Out
Several minutes after making the supervisor choose between two options, police officers came and escorted her way out of the water park. She asked for the police officers’ opinions, but they said that they were not allowed to say anything in situations like that. However, with their facial expressions, it was very obvious that they were in favor of Madelyn’s side.
Even The Police Agreed
On a post that Madelyn posted on Facebook, she said that the police officers were kind and understanding. Through some gestures, the police officers said that they found the water park’s accusation of her bikini being inappropriate absurd. How about you? Whose side are you on? Do you agree with the water park’s concern or agree with Madelyn’s belief that she was being singled out?
Looking Too Good In A Bikini
In the same Facebook post, she shared her experience of not wearing a bikini until she lost weight during her 40s. She said that no one could break the confidence she gained through the years of hard work and determination. She even said that she would not let anyone stop her from wearing something she was very confident with.
Wearing A Bikini At Any Age
She grabbed the chance to describe the bikini she was wearing that day as a full-size, standard, and two-piece bikini that was exactly like the ones usually sold in department stores and boutiques. She said that if what happened to her was not discrimination and if she was not really being singled out at that time, she would not be called out by the employees just like the other women who were also wearing bikinis in the water park.
It Was Completely Unfair
She felt that she was called out because of her body and her age. She was discriminated against by the water park’s employees because of her body. That was totally unfair. Not just because she was already in her 40s, she already could never wear bikinis that young women could wear. She expressed all of the emotions she felt about the incident – embarrassment, humiliation, anger, and disappointment through that Facebook post.
It Went Viral On Facebook
With 2.6 billion people using Facebook, Madelyn’s post narrating everything that happened in Adventure Oasis Water Park went viral. It gained thousands of reactions and comments from people all around the world. Well, you could not really please everyone – there were people who sided with Madelyn and there were also people who sided with the water park’s employees. However, most of the comments expressed how sorry they felt for Madelyn and how disappointed they were at the establishment.
Spreading The Word
Despite the fact that her post went viral, Madelyn knew that the employees in the water park would not learn from a viral Facebook post. That was why she thought of other ways on how she could effectively make Adventure Oasis Water Park learn from the discrimination they did to Madelyn. What she did next was a very serious decision to make, but the idea that there were other people, especially women, who were struggling from the same experience – body shaming and discrimination – empowered her to stood up and represent all of them.
She Received Local Support
She reached for the media’s attention and managed to get an interview from the local 41 news. Even the people working in the station were in favor of her side – they even gave her a flattering remark about the bikini and her confidence. They thought that the actions of Adventure Oasis Water Park’s employees were all absurd and ridiculous. In shorter terms, Madelyn Scheaffer received the local support.
Supporters From All Over The World
As soon as the interview was aired on television, her story went viral all over the world. People from other countries such as Hong Kong, China, and Greece knew her story. Thousands of people expressed their support for Madelyn through Facebook posts and letters. Madelyn was moved because she did not expect that amount of support, but she was very happy.
Appreciation For The Human Body
Madelyn realized that there were other people like her who had lots of appreciation for the human body all over the world. She felt like everything was a great opportunity for her and other people, who were also struggling with body shaming, to gain more confidence and lose all the insecurities they were feeling. She was grateful for everyone who supported her.
Appreciating What We Have
She expressed her love and gratitude for the people who had always supported people in appreciating their own bodies. She also expressed her support for those who were still suffering from insecurities because of things like body shaming and discrimination. She hoped that they would overcome those insecurities as soon as possible and gain more confidence in themselves.
Money Is Not Going To Fix The Problem
Madelyn firmly believed that a settlement fee or anything that involved money would not fix any damage that had been done to her. She said that all of the employees working for Adventure Oasis Water Park should undergo more training and be more educated about management. She also said that there was something wrong with the water park’s policies regarding the proper attire people should wear and they should fix it immediately. No one deserved to be treated the same way Madelyn was.
Change In Policy
Madelyn hoped that the water park would really listen to her concerns and take the idea of changing their policies into consideration. The amount of support that Madelyn Scheaffer received just proved how people in today’s world are more appreciative of the human body and more supportive of each other. It is very pleasing to think that body positivity is something that the modern world is embracing. However, some people, especially women still suffer from the same struggle Madelyn experienced all over the world. One of them is Sarah Villafane.
Sarah Villafane was a college student studying at the public liberal arts college in South Carolina, College of Charleston. Working out in the college gym was already a part of her everyday routine – after the dismissal of classes, she immediately walked her way to the college gym. However, one day, she went to the gym and received a remark that did not please her in any way.
Her Gym Top
On that day, Sarah still had to attend a few classes before working out, but she decided to wear gym clothes anyway. Well, wearing gym clothes was starting to be a thing at that time – other people already started to follow the trend of wearing gym clothes as everyday clothes.
A Matching Set
Sarah paired a black sleeveless shirt with black leggings. The top was a cropped top, but it was not too revealing – it only allowed a very small part of the belly to be shown. What Sarah wore that day was a go-to clothing combination of any people going or working at the gym.
As she stepped on the gym floor, she immediately found her place to workout. She was peacefully working out with the use of some gym equipment until she was stopped by an employee working at the gym. The employee said that she had to change her top into a more appropriate one. Sarah was speechless about what she heard. She thought that what she was wearing was not too revealing at all.
No Other Option
The girl simply replied and told the employee that she did not bring any extra shirt. With nothing to say, the employee left and went back to the counter. Despite feeling embarrassed by what just happened, Sarah continued on exercising as if her encounter with the employee never happened.
Sarah moved to another corner to do some workouts that would tone her abs. However, there was another employee who approached and stopped her from what she was doing. He told Sarah to wear a shirt. The girl was so irritated, she replied that she was actually wearing a shirt. The employee said that she had to wear a shirt that would cover the entire top of her body. Sarah was so confused.
The Staff Member Argued
Despite being completely annoyed by what was happening, Sarah did her best to politely ask the employee how her top could not be considered a shirt. The employee explained and said that she had to wear a less revealing shirt. The upper part of her body should be covered by the shirt.
Both Sarah and the employee were losing their patience. The employee just offered the girl to talk to the gym’s manager if she would not listen to them. Sarah actually agreed to the employee’s offer and asked him to call the manager.
It seemed like Sarah was depending on the saying “The customer is always right” and rooted for the manager to be in favor of her side. Unfortunately, the manager simply said that if she could not follow the gym’s policy and could not change her top into a full-coverage shirt, her best decision was to leave the gym. What the manager said caused a lot of attention to drawing on the girl. Sarah felt so humiliated and embarrassed.
Referred To As Boss
The college gym’s manager repeated the two options he gave Sarah. He said that in order to stay at the gym, she needed to wear a full-coverage shirt on and change her top. Even though she was already so embarrassed, she managed to tell the manager that what she was wearing was a shirt. The “boss” of the gym firmly disagreed.
Well, we have to agree that gym clothes should be something comfortable to wear, right? Even the standard gym clothes sold in department stores and boutiques are kind of revealing. So what was wrong with Sarah’s decision to wear a slightly cropped shirt? What do you think about the situation? Are you siding with the gym’s employee or are you siding with Sarah?
Sarah did not agree to wear another shirt which led her way out of the gym. She was kicked out. However, it was obvious that the employees, even their manager, did not handle the incident well – lots of students working out in the gym at that time witnessed that. They should have been more patient and polite in addressing the issue to Sarah.
Taking It To Media
Just like Madelyn Scheaffer, Sarah used Facebook as a platform to express her disappointment, embarrassment, and all other sentiments about what happened in the gym owned by the College of Charleston. She shared every detail starting from her choice of clothing, the shirt, how the employees approached her, and the attitude shown by the gym’s manager.
The Facebook post reached a lot of attention. There were some people who supported Sarah and said that the gym’s employees should not have addressed their issue that way. However, there were also people who were in favor of the employees’ and manager’s gestures. Some abstained and just said that wearing that kind of clothes should not be worn anywhere but the gym.
The gym responded to all the questions as to why they reacted that way. They said that how they handled the situation like that had a good reason. They were very unkind and impolite in addressing the issue to the student – could lack proper manners be justified in any way?
The management released a statement that they required the student, Sarah Villafane, to change her top because of the strict dress code the gym had been implementing for years. They also said that they put a strict dress code into effect for the sake of the gym’s sanitation. However, the employees and the manager did not mention the idea of sanitation. All of their reasons as to why Sarah should have changed her top were all about the need for the shirt to be less revealing.
With the gym’s official statement, many people, especially students, shared their opinion about Sarah’s Facebook posts. They even said that full-coverage clothes had always been the type of clothes that should be worn in gyms so that people could have less physical and skin contact with all of the gym’s equipment. Some students from different universities even said that the same strict dress code was also the one implemented in their schools’ gyms.
Whatever the reason was, the employees, especially the manager, could have been more polite in addressing the gym’s strict dress code. They could have directly said that they need Sarah to change her top into a full-coverage shirt for the sake of the establishment’s sanitation. Let us just hope that everyone learned a lesson from this incident and did everything they could to be better versions of themselves.