Quaden Bayles' Family Reveals What Really Happened After He Went Viral

Carly Williams
·2-min read

Quaden Bayles and his mum Yarraka have revealed what happened behind the scenes after she posted a heartbreaking video of her distraught son expressing the urge to take his life because of relentless bullying over his short stature.

The Facebook video, uploaded in February, was viewed 25 million times in less than two days and sparked a global conversation amongst football players and A-list celebrities like Hugh Jackman and Cardi B.

A crowdfunding campaign was created by comedian Brad Williams – who was also born with achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism – to fly Quaden to Disneyland. It raised more than £165,000 in a few days.

The following weeks and months were overwhelming for the family, who faced criticism for live-streaming Quaden’s anguish, followed by bizarre and cruel internet rumours that the boy was actually a 19-year-old actor and the family was rich and scamming the public for financial gain. Another false rumour was that Quaden was dead – perhaps the worst of all the lies that Yarraka could not begin to grasp.

Now, 10-year-old Quaden and his mum have sat down with the ABC’s Australian Story to update the public on how they have coped in the aftermath of their rollercoaster ordeal.

“I could never have predicted what was going to happen after posting one video,” Yarraka said of her Facebook Live message.

“Apparently, Quaden is an 18-year-old man. He’s already rich and famous. He’s an actor. I coached him to do and say everything in that video. And it was all fake.”

Yarraka said that was when she knew she needed professional help. She got lawyers onboard to counteract the lies and launched defamation proceedings against Sydney’s Daily Telegraph columnist Miranda Devine for retweeting false information.

“I think it’s really concerning that you have high-profile people that don’t do their due diligence. A lot of people obviously believed her,” Yarraka said.

“We ended up getting our apology and the...

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