Humiliated by her school, this Pennsylvania teen found support from friends and strangers.

Like many 17-year-olds, Aniya Wolf was looking forward to her junior prom.

The Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, high school student was looking forward to dancing the night away with her best friends and classmates at the May 6, 2016, formal. Aniya, who has always preferred pants to dresses, even purchased a new suit with her mom for the special occasion.


Aniya on the day of her prom. Image via ABC News/YouTube.

But things went south when administrators from her Catholic high school, Bishop McDevitt, heard Aniya was planning to wear a suit to the dance.

The school informed Aniya and her mother that if she chose to wear the suit, she would be asked to leave. The conversations and messages, which took place just hours before prom, mentioned that the dress code was clearly stated in a previous note to parents. However, Aniya's mother, Carolyn Wolf, said the dress code never explicitly stated girls had to wear dresses.

Aniya reading over the e-mail and dress code from her school. Image via ABC News/YouTube.

Carolyn even sat down with the principal that afternoon, just to see if anything else could be done. And short of making her daughter wear a dress, there wasn't.

"I can't put a dress on her any more than I could put a dress on any of my sons," Carolyn told Today. "That's not who she is."

With the dance rapidly approaching, Aniya decided to go for it and attend prom anyway. She barely made it past the ticket line before she was asked to leave by school officials who went as far as threatening to call the police.

The experience was painful and embarrassing for the teen.

"I felt humiliated, getting kicked out of prom," she told Today. "I wasn't going to hurt anybody with a suit."

Aniya, who identifies as a lesbian, feels her school is singling her out because of her sexual orientation.

"It's saying, 'We don't want you in our prom. You're a freak of nature,'" she told Today.

Aniya after being asked to leave the dance. Image via ABC27 News.

It would be easy for Aniya to feel defeated, but people across the country have rallied behind her to show their support.

Women around the country donned suits and tuxedos and shared their photos using the hashtag #suitsforaniya.

Employees at Aniya's local chapter of the YWCA were some of the first to participate.

Double bassist Lauren Pierce showed off her dashing tux.

Professional soccer player Ashlyn Harris lent her voice to the effort.

And "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" creator Rob McElhenney even asked Aniya if she wanted a guest spot on the show.


But surely, one of the best reactions came from William Penn Senior High School.

Principal Brandon Carter invited Aniya and her date to the school's prom on May 21.

"We embrace all," he said in the invite.

It may not be the prom she had in mind, but hopefully it will be a fun, welcoming, night to remember.

Hear from Aniya and her mother about their experience in this short clip from ABC News.

More
Facebook / Mikhail Galin

Putting your pet in cargo during a flight isn't always safe. In 2016, the Department of Transportation reported a total of 26 pet deaths and 22 injuries on flights. Because conditions in cargo can be uncomfortable for animals, the Humane Society recommends taking your pet aboard when you fly, or just leaving it at home.

It's not surprising that one Russian man didn't want to put his overweight cat in cargo during an eight-hour flight from Moscow to Vladivostok. What is surprising is the great lengths he took to fly with his four-legged friend.

Russian airline Aeroflot allows pets to fly inside the plane's cabin, as long as the cat weighs under 17.6 pounds and stays in its carrier during the flight. When Mikhail Galin went to check in, he was told he couldn't fly with his four-year old cat, Viktor. Viktor weighed in at 22 pounds and would have to be relegated to cargo.

But Viktor was sick from their earlier flight from Riga, Latvia to Moscow. And besides, Viktor had been allowed to fly inside the cabin during that flight. The airline staff didn't even bother to make Viktor sit on the scales. Galin was unable to persuade staff to bring his fur baby on board.

"To all attempts to explain that the cat won't survive there on an 8-hour flight with the baggage and would haunt her in her nightmares for the rest of her life, she (the Aeroflot staff member) replied that there are rules," Galin wrote in a Facebook post translated from Russian.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Photo by Kelvin Octa from Pexels

Newborn babies don't seem to do much beyond eating and pooping and, of course, hiccupping. A lot. Parenting advice on how to cure a baby's hiccups runs the whole gamut. It's recommended parents try everything from nursing to stop feeding the baby so much, from giving the baby gripe water to letting the hiccups play their course. But when your baby hiccups too much, you shouldn't freak out. There's a good reason why.

A new study published in Clinical Neurophysiology found that hiccups play an important role in a baby's development. Researchers from the University College London found 217 babies for their study, but only looked at 13 newborns with persistent hiccups. Ten of those babies hiccupped when they were awake, and three hiccupped during their "wriggly" sleep. We have no idea how the scientists got any work done with all that cuteness lying around.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
via The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon / YouTube

Actress Kristen Bell and "The Tonight Show" host Jimmy Fallon showed off their vocal and comedic chops on Tuesday night when the performed a medley of 17 Disney songs, spanning nine decades, in just five minutes.

The duo started with 1940's "When You Wish Upon a Star" and ended with 2013's "Let it Go" from "Frozen."

Bell will reprise her role as Anna in Disney's upcoming "Frozen 2."

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Ask almost any woman about a time a man said or did something sexually inappropriate to them, and she'll have a story or four to tell. According to a survey NPR published last year, 81% of women report having experienced sexual harassment, with verbal harassment being the most common. (By contrast, 43% of men report being sexually harassed. Naturally harassment toward anyone of any sex or gender is not okay, but women have been putting up with this ish unchecked for centuries.)

One form of verbal sexual harassment is the all too common sexist or sexual "joke." Ha ha ha, I'm going to say something explicit or demeaning about you and then we can all laugh about how hilarious it is. And I'll probably get away with it because you'll be too embarrassed to say anything, and if you do you'll be accused of being overly sensitive. Ha! Won't that be a hoot?

Keep Reading Show less
popular