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Posted: July 05, 2017

Plus-size model posts viral video after being body-shamed on flight: 'This is a fat person's reality'


By Brianna Chambers, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

A plus-size model and popular Instagram user posted on social media about her experience beside a fellow passenger on a plane during a flight last week.

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Natalie Hage, 30, said that during an American Airlines flight in which she sat in a middle seat, a man sitting beside her sent rude texts about her to an unknown recipient. The texts focused on Hage’s weight.

Hage said when she sat down in her seat she saw the man “furiously texting and then purposefully turning the phone away” from her. 

“So, naturally, next time he texts, I take a look,” she wrote on Instagram. “The texts were about me, and I’m almost positive he took photos of me. Not only were the texts about me, but they were really mean and ugly.”

“Hopefully she didn't have any Mexican food,” Hage said she saw in a received message on the man’s phone. “I think she ate a Mexican,” he responded. 

“Then he proceeds to say he’s leaving a ‘neck mark on the window’ because he’s so smashed against the wall,” Hage wrote in a post.

A post shared by natalie. (@nataliemeansnice) on

Hage, who said she felt uncomfortable for the duration of the flight, confronted the man at the end of the flight. 

She posted a video of the interaction on Facebook, where it has garnered more than 1 million views.

“You have no idea who you’ll hurt with those kind of things,” Hage can be heard telling the man. “You made me feel so uncomfortable to exist in this seat.”

>> Related: Pilot asks passengers to pray when plane violently shakes midair

 Hage said the man embarrassed her.

“The whole three hours to LAX I’m sitting there no arm rest, feet under me, crossed arms, making myself as small as I possibly could because ... at first I was so humiliated,” she told ABC News in an interview. “And then about halfway through the flight is when I started to get really angry.”

“This is a fat person’s daily reality and not just on a plane,” Hage wrote on Instagram, where she has more than 100,000 followers. “You can be completely in your own space, not bothering anyone, and people will still ... try and hurt you.”

>> Related: Pilot 'congratulates' passengers for drinking all alcohol on plane

“I’ve had a lifetime of experiences of people getting away with treating me terribly, and this time was enough,” Hage told ABC News. “I spent years and years building a social media platform based on body positivity. It doesn't matter how or why you might be overweight or you might be fat, but you still deserve to be treated like a human being.”

A post shared by natalie. (@nataliemeansnice) on

A post shared by natalie. (@nataliemeansnice) on

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