UK mum appeals for birthday cards for teenage son with severe skin condition

Birthday card
A UK mum has asked for birthday cards to cheer up her teenage son who has a severe skin condition. Photo credit: Getty

A UK mum has asked for birthday cards to cheer up her teenage son who has a severe skin condition.

Rhys Williams, from Manchester, was diagnosed with epidermolysis bullosa shortly after he was born. The rare genetic condition causes his skin to blister at the slightest touch. His fingers have fused together and he uses a wheelchair to get around. 

When he was six, Rhys made national headlines as "the boy who can never be hugged", and was praised for being brave about his illness and doing well at school.

Now 13, Rhys has sunk into unhappiness and frustration with his condition. 

Tanya Williams told The Mirror she's worried about her once-happy boy.

"The last few months, he's had enough of life. He's had enough of being in pain with the sores. He just wants to give up, he doesn't want to fight anymore."

While most parents find their children hard to relate to once they hit adolescence, Williams believes Rhys is suffering from more than regular teen moodiness.

She says he has no social life outside of school, hates being in public because of how people look at him and spends his free time playing video games and sleeping.

To bring him joy in the past, Rhys' family gathered Christmas cards from their local community and decorated the house with them. 

"Every single card he received, he opened them with so much joy," Williams told The Mirror.

"He got hundreds at a time. It showed him that he still needs to fight, that there are people out there who do care and do love him."

Now she's appealing for the public to send Rhys cards to celebrate his 14th birthday, coming up on September 21.

"Hopefully it can make him see that not everything is bad."

Anyone who would like to wish Rhys a happy birthday can send a card to 40 Whalley Avenue, Bolton, BL1 5UD.

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