Wife of man born without jaw admits she used to be 'embarrassed' by him
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The wife of a man born without a jaw has admitted she used to be embarrassed by him.
Joseph Williams, from Chicago, was born with otofacial syndrome, an extremely rare condition that causes a person to be born without a mandible (lower jaw or jawbone) and therefore without a chin.
As you can imagine, he had a pretty rough start in life, previously telling Caters News that he faced bullying and self-esteem setbacks - but he was determined to push through.
"Being born without a jaw came as a shock to my birth mother," he explained.
"I was a twin but the other baby passed away before we were born. When I was just a couple of days old, I was taken from Illinois, where I was born, to Chicago, for multiple surgeries.
"I had a bone and skin graft as they tried to construct a jaw for me, but as I grew my body rejected it and it was unsuccessful.
"And I was also put up for adoption which led to me meeting my adopted family."
After overcoming all manner of trials and tribulations, he recently found love with Vania.
The pair were initially colleagues, but they tied the knot in 2020.
In an interview with Truly, she said: "When we were friends, people always questioned our friendship, if we were more than friends, and I would always tell them, 'No, no, no, we're just friends.' Because I was embarrassed."
Communicating through his phone, Joseph said that he first had feelings for Vania on the second day of meeting her after he helped her at work.
He recalled: "She had a smile on her face that I was like, 'That's the most beautiful smile I have ever seen.'
"Then when I walked past her station she signed the word 'hi' to me. I was teaching her sign language a little, but the way she did it made me feel some kind of way."
Though they developed feelings for each other, the happy couple said their journey hasn't been without its hurdles - mostly due to other people questioning their relationship.
"We get things like, 'She can't kiss him or she must be cheating on him'," said Joseph. "Other things consist of personal matters such as sex, and we are faking marriage for attention."
Vania added that people sometimes stare at them or pull out their phones to record or take pictures.
But the pair don't let the negativity and ignorance of others get them down.
Vania continued: "What I want people to know about being in a relationship with someone who has a disability is that you have to be patient with them...
"And look at their heart - like, don't look at their physical appearance, wherever the disability may be."
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