That's terrible. I'm really sorry to hear that. Why should we feel bad about being ourselves? Why do people feel the need to push us into these boxes to conform to what they think is the norm? I do think its a bit of inferiority complex shining through. Some people are just uncomfortable with any bit of difference & to some people it's threatening and/or intimidating.I can't count how many times I've been told to "make an effort" or called lazy for "obviously not even brushing (my) hair in the morning"... I used to get bullied as a kid, and one of the things my bullies would zero in on would be my hair. I got called "troll" a lot, and got to hear absolutely delightful remarks about how my family wasn't just poor, we were stupid and dirty as we let a moptop kid like me run around.
I think the one that's gotten to me most has been being told off for looking "unprofessional" by an employer. I teach, and getting put down for "not setting a good example for the students" was a bit much - I wear neat clothes, light make up, and otherwise turn myself out exactly like my colleagues... but my hair isn't straight, and sometimes goes crazy from rainy weather. Respectability politics in education can be ridiculous.
All we can do is hold our heads up high, rise above it and be proud of who we are & with what God has blessed us with whether its different or not. I'll certainly be teaching my kids that.
These petty, shallow comments aren't worth the time of day, to be honest. Not worth a single thought more. but somehow when you've been put down yr whole life esp since an early age - for me anyway, it can be cutting and stirs up some emotion.