Little Kingsley, the adorable little lad in the photo above, was born with a large port-wine stain birthmark on his face. Since his birth in January 2022, he has had quite the journey in an effort to remove the stain, but it’s not for the reasons many people think.
His mum, Brooke Atkins, often posts about her son’s journey on her TikTok account and Kingsley’s Instagram page, and, although she is met with an outpouring of supporters and fans of the adorable little boy, she also gets her fair share of trolls, especially after Kingsley underwent his first laser treatment in May.
She shared a few photos of Kingsley’s face during recovery as well as the laser process and, well, let’s just say not everyone brought their positive comments to the TikTok table.
She was called a “monster” for putting her son through the laser treatment with commenters suggesting she was only doing it for cosmetic purposes.
One commenter wrote, “That birthmark is barely visible, what you’re doing to him is horrible, it’s more for you than him.”
Another said, “Brainwashed mother making her kid insecure the second he gets out the womb.”
“Why is everyone supporting this?” commented someone else.
Before you comment nasty things – its not just a birthmark,its a portwine stain, the goal isnt to completley remove it, its to keep the skin healthy.Please research PWS before leaving uneducated, negative comments✌🏾♬ original sound – larissalambert
‘Heap of mum guilt’
Naturally, Brooke was broken over the rude comments. As she scrolled through the hate, she started to question whether she had made the right decision.
Honestly, when I first started reading the negative comments, I sat there for a good half an hour and cried to myself.
I had a whole heap of mum guilt, and it made me question my decision. Even though I knew I was doing the right thing, the cruel words still played in my head.”
Brooke has since explained her reasoning behind choosing laser therapy for her son and it’s not at all what people think. You see, the kind of birthmark that Kingsley has is actually quite dangerous for his health.
A dangerous diagnosis
While port-wine birthmarks are usually harmless, this is not always the case, especially if on the face and over the eye. In these instances, port-wine stains can be linked to glaucoma and Sturge Wever Syndrome.
This can cause seizures and other disabilities while glaucoma can cause blindness.
Kingsley was diagnosed with both and thus, his parents made the difficult decision to get laser treatment at the end of May.
When he was first born, we were referred to the Queensland Children’s Hospital dermatology and vascular department, where they organise the first treatment and explain in further details why laser would be important.
The purpose of the laser treatments are not to ‘remove’ the birthmark but instead keep the skin healthy, to prevent any further damage to the area.
The thing with port wine stains is that they are progressive, meaning they will change and darken over time. Once a port wine stain gets to this stage, it is often very difficult to treat and laser barely has any affect, as the skin is already far too damaged.”
The quicker they went through the laser treatment, the better for their son.
Sweetest boy you will ever meet
Kingsley now has another laser treatment scheduled for this month and Brooke, who lives on the Gold Coast, is focusing on the support, rather than the hate she receives.
I just wish these people had known about the health issues connected to these types of birthmarks before writing these things, that this wasn’t for cosmetic reasons and that as parents, this was the hardest decision we have had to make.
Reading these comments, actually do hurt – this is the last thing we need, judgement from those who have no understanding around my son’s conditions.”
Although Kingsley has had quite the medical journey so far, including 20 hospital appointments, three MRI’s, one ultrasound, two hearing tests, two operations, two laser treatments, and three diagnoses, all in six months, Brooke explains that her little boy is the “the happiest, most loving and sweetest boy you will ever meet!”