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Nick Viall’s VMAs date becomes latest victim of Bachelor Nation cyberbullying

When the Bachelorette‘s resident runner-up, Nick Viall, posted a picture on Instagram from the VMAs, we had two thoughts: What was Viall doing at the VMAs, and who is this beautiful blonde on his arm?

While we may never know what everyone’s favorite reality TV bad boy was doing at the awards show, we soon realized the gorgeous girl standing beside him was none other than fellow reality TV alum Sadie Murray.

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Murray, who similarly came in second on her season of The Bachelor: Rome, has since made a name for herself as the Go-To Girlfriend — an on-air expert in all things fashion, beauty and lifestyle who has been tapped for segments on shows like E! News and Extra.

So, naturally, our matchmaker minds started spinning when Viall shared the cute snapshot of the two together. Could this be Bachelor couple kismet in the making?
Our suspicions (read: hopes) were only bolstered when Murray reposted the pic on her Instagram page, joking that her filter was better. Later, she posted a playful photo of the two rocking out with a few friends. C’mon, you guys, they’re adorable, no?

But, alas, nothing can ruin the sweet headiness of blossoming romance than the bitter vitriol of Internet haters. And boy did they come out in full force for Viall’s post — a trend that is becoming the norm for Bachelor Nation. Remember the scathing comments fired at Kaitlyn Bristowe?

In addition to several people who simply scoffed at Murray for not being on their social radars, even more launched a vicious verbal attack on the bubbly beauty for her appearance. The comments ranged from mildly rude, “Omg, her makeup looks horrible,” to downright ugly, “Ghost face tan body. WRONG FOUNDATION BITCH” and sometimes baffling, “I thought it was Caitlyn Jenner at first” (oh, you mean fierce?).

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Hundreds of negative comments lampooned poor Murray for “TOO much makeup” and — get this — daring to recycle an outfit. “Oooohhh don’t get phoographed [sic] in the same dress in the same week and fire your make up [sic] artist immediately,” read one such comment. “Sorry girl but nick your [sic] hot as always. Pick better arm candy.”

Are we for real with this, ladies?

For starters (and since this is one of my biggest pet peeves), isn’t it about time we stop criticizing celebrities for actually treating their wardrobes like wardrobes? I mean, how many among us only wear an outfit once and then toss it or donate it to charity?

Yes, they are famous. Yes, they will be photographed. Isn’t that all the more reason to celebrate those celebrities who are brave enough to be repeat fashion “offenders”? Not only does it speak to sustainability, but it also sends a positive message to young women — it’s OK, even cool, to rock an outfit more than once. We applaud Murray for refusing to cave to consumption or the perpetuation of impossible standards.

As for attacking her appearance, well, it’s definitely time to give up that ghost. Whether it stems from insecurity or something else, there’s no justification for cyberbullying. There’s just not. We have enough hurdles to overcome and people pitting us against each other as women — it’s high time we stand in one another’s corners.

For the record, Murray’s makeup was likely flawless. SPF mixed in her makeup or a hi-def foundation was likely the culprit — both reflect harshly in the bright light of a camera flash. As for those haters who suggested she was a fool for not “approving” the picture before it was posted… really?

How fantastic is it that Murray celebrated the picture for what it was: a moment captured in time between two friends. She chose authenticity over perfection. She chose to celebrate life as opposed to censor it. Yes, please! We’ll take more of that in Hollywood (and beyond).

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There’s more good news, too. Although they were outnumbered by the haters, there were women standing up for Murray.

“That woman is seriously beautiful. Cyber bullying [sic] is such a shame. I’d rather look like her than have an ugly attitude any day. Nick, you guys look smashing!!” said one woman. “She is a beautiful woman. Stop hating ladies. She doesn’t tan her face (prevents premature aging),” said another. And, our personal favorite: “Wow! Girls are petty. Quit picking each other apart. I don’t know why we live in this culture where we tear each other down instead of building each other up.”

But if you still have any doubts that happy girls are the prettiest and kindness is the best accessory, we defer to another recent Instagram post by none other than Murray herself.

Amen, sistah. Amen.

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