The Traitors winner Meryl Williams has said she hoped to challenge misconceptions surrounding dwarfism on the reality series and show that she can do “the exact same as everyone else”.
he former call centre agent, 26, was one of the three champions of the hit new programme which saw 22 strangers play “the ultimate game of detection, backstabbing and trust” at a Scottish Highlands castle in the hope of winning a share of the prize money.
Throughout the series, she completed demanding challenges alongside her fellow contestants and survived banishments and ‘murders’ to finally win her share of the £101,050 prize cash.
Appearing on Friday’s episode of Good Morning Britain, Williams, who has a form of dwarfism called achondroplasia, said: “The whole reason why I wanted to go on the show was to raise awareness.
“I think there’s a lot of people who don’t think I can do the same things that they can do. So I thought if I go on this show, if I do the exact same challenges as everyone else, we all had level playing fields.
“A lot of the challenges people were like ‘Did you get extra time’ I was like ‘No’. We literally started the same.”
Williams revealed she did receive “some negative comments” after appearing on the show but that she was able to deal with it as she has experienced this on a “day-to-day basis”.
She said: “If I was to go out in public, quite a lot of people are shocked.
“People do stare and that was before the show. So after the show, I did receive some negative comments, but it wasn’t anything I’ve never heard before if that makes sense.
“And because I had such a good experience on the show I just ignored anything else that was negative.”
She added: “And I thought by doing this I can least change some people’s ideas and if they see someone in public with my condition they can at least think ‘Oh, I have seen someone else on a TV show and they’re the exact same as us, there’s no point to make them feel different or point or laugh’.”
Williams said she also wanted to encourage others with disabilities or her condition that they too “can do whatever they want to do” and to not feed into the negativity as she feels it can “eat you up inside” otherwise.
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Following her success, she revealed she quit her day job and hopes to use her winnings to pursue a career in presenting.
She said she is also considering launching a clothing line which is “more accessible and more affordable” for people with dwarfism.
Williams explained that her seamstress grandmother has been altering her clothes since she was a baby which has allowed her to wear what she wants without restriction.
“Clothes are a way of expressing yourself, it displays identity,” she said. “So that’s something I’ve always wanted to do and I think I maybe would go into that, making clothes more accessible for people with my condition.”
The competition, which was hosted by Claudia Winkleman, also saw comedian Hannah Byczkowski and property agent Aaron Evans crowned the winners alongside Williams after a tense final where fellow contestant and ‘traitor’ Wilfred Webster nearly stole the whole jackpot.
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