When Robert was born in Australia, her mother was expecting her fifth healthy child as the prenatal ultrasounds looked normal. Despite the mother’s choice, Robert was born with a huge tumor in the middle of his face and both of his legs were deformed. Upon hearing the description about her son’s appearance from her husband, Robert’s mother refused to look at her baby. When she was about to go home, she decided to do so without him.
Robert’s mother started visiting him at the hospital regularly. but still she couldn’t accept him as her baby and take him home. She even told his sister that “He is so ugly.” But gradually she tried to find out what’s stopping her from loving her baby.
One morning, the family took vote to decide whether or not to bring baby Robert to home. However his four siblings supported him and that was the day Robert joined the family. But even then, her mother was struggling to accept his appearance. She noted it on a blue diary, it’s really heartbreaking for most of us to read the cruel thoughts of a mother about her own baby. But Robert felt quite differently. He regularly asked his mom to read her diary to him and it has made him courageous and inspiring man he is today.
Robert received some of the most advanced facial reconstruction surgery ever done in Australia. When a reporter approached Robert’s family to do a story. Robert recommended him to avoid his mom’s part of negligence, but his mother wanted to include the portion to help others having similar situations to hope rather than shame.
Robert Hoge – married and a father of two, has worked as a journalist and a well-respected political advisor. Now he encourages others as a disability advocate and inspires with his memoir named ‘Ugly’.
This man was neglected by his own mother just because of his appearance. But instead of being down, he found the strength to accept his differences and define himself.