Allison Holker can still remember the moment she realized all those chats about staying true to yourself had gotten through to 12-year-old daughter Weslie Fowler.
Picking up the then-second grader from school, the So You Think You Can Dance alum noticed an uncharacteristic somberness, perhaps the slightest welling of the eyes. “There was a little bit of tears, but she was staying strong,” Allison recalled when she Weslie joined E! News for an exclusive Zoom chat.
The issue, she detailed, was Weslie’s attire. “She chose to wear suspenders and a bowtie—and she loved it so much,” said Allison. But her classmates lacked her same fashion-forward sensibility. “They kept being like, ‘You’re a boy. You’re wearing boy clothes. What are you doing?’ All this stuff,” continued Allison. “So she was getting hit really hard.”
Sensing a major learning opportunity, she gathered up her best parental wisdom, gently pointing out, “like, ‘Weslie, you love that bowtie. What do you want to do about this?'” recalled Allison. “And she was like, ‘I’m going to wear it tomorrow.’ And she wore it again the next day.”
Now, five years later, Allison noted, “We actually still have the bowtie. We kept it around just for, like, memory’s sake.”