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The gold-winning gymnast said she had a great time despite constant criticism.
This story originally appeared on PEOPLE.com.
Despite the constant backlash, Gabby Douglas says she had a great time in Rio.
The gold medal-winning Olympian received criticism throughout the duration of the games. She wasn’t bubbly enough, she didn’t put her hand over her heart for the Pledge of Allegiance, she wasn’t clapping hard enough for her teammates, viewers even had complaints about her hair. It was all pretty petty. However, despite all this, Douglas still enjoyed herself.
“I had fun,” she tells PEOPLE. “Maybe people weren’t being fair on social media, but that’s social media for you.” It can’t be easy for a 20-year-old to deal with such constant criticism, but Douglas has handled it well. “I just found things to be positive about and there’s a lot to be happy about. We won the gold medal as a team, and it was just such an amazing experience. I came to the Olympics and won a gold medal! That’s still really awesome. I can only do what I can do, and if people want to say their stuff on social media, I can’t stop them.”
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Fortunately, through it all, Douglas had support from fans who showed the gymnast that there are tons of people who love her, one of them being SNL’s Leslie Jones. Jones, who took a break from Twitter recently after trolls bombarded her with racist and misogynist comments, showed her support by tweeting, “Yo I just heard Gabby getting attacked on her page show her the love you showed me #LOVE4GABBYUSA send to @gabrielledoug.” Douglas was floored, sharing, “That was just awesome. It felt really good to have people support me. It was a good reminder that where there is hate, love is more.”
While she’s enjoyed her time in Rio, the Olympian admits that she’s ready to spend some quality time with those she loves. “I’m really looking forward to going home, just to have some family time. I can’t wait to relax and play with my two dogs.”
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