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April 10, 2013

German-Born Mariam, Sporting A Full Beard, Is Now Searching For A Partner To Love Her For Who She Is After Growing Fed Up Of Laborious Tweezing; Cowards Also Tell Her That She Needs To Be Sent To Russia...Or Shot.

A mother who began sprouting thick facial hair after the birth of her son 28 years ago says she's feeling sexier and more confident than ever before, having finally stopped trying to get rid of her beard.

The German-born woman, identified only as Mariam, appeared on ITV's This Morning to discuss why she stopped tweezing the hair on her face which she had been plucking every day for almost two decades.

Mariam, 49, also explained to Holly Willoughby and Philip Schofield that she is happy with the way she looks and would not change her situation, despite being criticised for her behaviour by her own mother.

She also said she is able to look past the comments of internet trolls who target her bearded woman blog to tell her 'people like me should be sent to Russia... or shot'.

Mariam - who has had tests to rule out serious medical problems more associated with excessive hair growth in women - told Phil and Holly, along with expert Dr Carol Cooper, that she had never had any facial hair before the birth of her son, after which it gradually began growing.

Ten years on, the hair was growing thick enough for a full beard, and Mariam would laboriously tweeze out each hair every morning.

'I asked my mother what to do and she told me to tweeze them, never to shave or wax. And then I visited my gynaecologist who said it happened to lots of other women so I shouldn't worry. But they didn't really give me a reason. Now I know it must be inherited. My chin got really red and inflamed from all the plucking, and some of the hairs were ingrown, so it always looked like I'd fallen on my chin. But when people asked what had happened and I told them they couldn't believe it.'

In 2008, when she was living alone and unemployed, Mariam decided to give her beard a chance to grow. She said: 

'I had no job so I had free time to give it a chance and see what happened, so I started a blog to inform other women about it, and to see what was happening every day and how I felt'.

Mariam explained to Holly and Phil that prior to her 'experiment' plucking her beard had become an obsession, and that her son, who has not been named, used to remember it taking her hours to leave the house. She added: 

'I thought about it all the time. I had to double check before leaving the house that it was OK, and take a mirror in my pocket. That was life. When I decided to let it grow it didn't feel brave, it was more like a curiosity. I wanted to see what would happen to me. There was a big fear that everyone would turn away and nobody would talk to me anymore.'

And Mariam did meet some resistance - from her family.

'My mum said "do you have to shock people like this". Then she got used to it and thought that one day I'd finish it, and was patient, but now she's getting nervous and wants me to stop and become "normal".'

She received negative reactions from other people, too, especially on the internet: 

'People can be cruel depending on where you go. Some people say people like me should be sent to Russia or shot, but that's just one person on the internet writing horrible stuff. Other people say it's courageous and inspiring. So there are both sides.'

Mariam now travels with a circus as the bearded lady act, which she says she enjoys since she has studied acting in the past and also likes educating people about the issue. Click here to continue reading and to watch the video of Mariam's interview.

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