People 09 October 2016
Lisa Opie, founder of Vizcaya Swimwear, the official swimwear sponsor of the Miss United States National Pageant, has a background story few people believe.
“I ended up being bullied because I was so socially awkward [that] I didn’t know how to talk to people because I was homeschooled, so I had to drop out of that. I went back to homeschooling.”
When she re-enrolled in school, the bullying continued, but she decided she wasn’t going to take it anymore. She started competing in pageants because she wanted to prove her bullies wrong. “I can be better than this; I can be beautiful.” Pageantry prevented Opie from going down a self-destructive path that most people take to cope with bullying.
me build confidence"
- Lisa Opie
“It helped me build confidence. It helped me stay in shape. It made me just focus on what I wanted out of life, and not what other people thought.”
Lisa Opie posing in her Vizcaya Swimwear
While she didn’t place in Miss Virginia, she had such a good experience that she wanted to continue competing. Because she couldn’t afford to buy one, she designed her own swimsuit, and then was asked to design a national swimsuit. She realized that this was an excellent business opportunity, and that’s how Vizcaya Swimwear was born.
Vizcaya Swimwear supports women that are actively promoting a positive lifestyle.
“It was the bullies. I really have to thank the bullies out there because I just wanted to prove them wrong. Just being up there on that stage and showing them that I can be confident– even the opportunity to share my story.”
Listen to our exclusive interview with Lisa to learn more about how she’s taking a unique promotional and marketing approach by launching her Miss Vizcaya campaign. (Available on iTunes)
3 min read
Email email@example.com to get the advice you need!
Help! My Friend Is a No Show
Dear Armchair Psychologist,
I have a friend who doesn't reply to my messages about meeting for dinner, etc. Although, last week I ran into her at a local restaurant of mine, it has always been awkward to be friends with her. Should I continue our friendship or discontinue it? We've been friends for a total four years and nothing has changed. I don't feel as comfortable with her as my other close friends, and I don't think I'll ever be able to reach that comfort zone in pure friendship.
Dear Sadsies,I am sorry to hear you've been neglected by your friend. You may already have the answer to your question, since you're evaluating the non-existing bond between yourself and your friend. However, I'll gladly affirm to you that a friendship that isn't reciprocated is not a good friendship.
I have had a similar situation with a friend whom I'd grown up with but who was also consistently a very negative person, a true Debby Downer. One day, I just had enough of her criticism and vitriol. I stopped making excuses for her and dumped her. It was a great decision and I haven't looked back. With that in mind, it could be possible that something has changed in your friend's life, but it's insignificant if she isn't responding to you. It's time to dump her and spend your energy where it's appreciated. Don't dwell on this friend. History is not enough to create a lasting bond, it only means just that—you and your friend have history—so let her be history!
- The Armchair Psychologist