Is Caroline Flack another Love Island tragedy?
I’ve never watched Love Island, but then I didn’t watch Big Brother during its heyday either. Never once was I tempted to tune in. Not even when the only topic of conversation at work seemed to be who had been evicted the previous evening.
I don’t know what it is, but I find some of these reality shows disturbing. For me, the producers are seeking out the vulnerable and eccentric within society. They think these personalities give added value to the programme. Just like the Jeremy Kyle show, with its family dramas and infidelities, they believe it makes interesting viewing, but at what cost to the contestants?
Love Island for me is another of these types of reality shows. In a two-minute advertisement clip, we will see glamour, idealism and judgment of others thrust down our throats. “I love her”, “I don’t like him”, “he’s handsome”, “she’s got no personality,” “he’s thick,” “she’s dim.” The images of adonis type males and attractive leggy females falling in and out of love, are on display for the viewers to critique. Yes, ON DISPLAY!
Is Caroline Flack another Love Island tragedy? I don’t know, but The Jeremy Kyle show had one suicide linked to it, Love Island now has three. It might be pure escapism for some, but I question the show’s true value for many of its captive viewers.
I didn’t know Caroline Flack as a person, or a celebrity. I wasn’t even aware of how much she had suffered at the hands of the tabloids and social media trolls.
All I know is what has been reported through TV and what her friends and family have said in interviews since her tragic death on Saturday 15th February. And it seems we had a lot in common.
Their accounts of her personality being vivacious, outgoing, the life and soul of the party, glamorous, generous to a fault, and confident rang a few bells. The same characteristics given to me by my family and friends over the years. And while I may have all of those traits, I have also struggled with mental health issues, low self-esteem, an overwhelming sense of loneliness and isolation even though surrounded by love. I tried to take my own life nine years ago, thank God for my family and friends I didn’t, but it never makes it easier, when I hear that someone, just like me, made the grave decision it was the only solution.
THE IMAGE OF PERFECTION
We are all drowning in flawless images of people living what seems to be perfect lives. Across social media platforms, teenage girls post pictures of themselves retouched, airbrushed and edited so much by their mobile phone apps, they look more like porcelain dolls than fresh faced youngsters.
The beauty trade, like many other huge business conglomerates thrive on our vulnerabilities. Their advertising campaigns reek of YOU could look like this, YOU could be like this. But for most of us, let’s be honest, we don’t look like that and we don’t live like that. And striving to look like that and live like that is insane. WHY?
Because no one lives these perfect lifestyles, but the image of perfection makes these companies very rich.
‘Being comfortable in your OWN skin’ is an old adage, but until we are grateful for who we are and what we have, we are not living the life we should. Too many of us are reaching out for something that is not there. We are all human beings, which means we all make mistakes, have vulnerabilities and go through bad patches in our lives. Wouldn’t it be better, if we could all be open about this stuff without fear of condemnation?
LOVE ISLAND TRAGEDY, OR NOT?
We all have our part to play. Being kind just isn’t good enough, it has to go much further than this. On and off Social media platforms, we have to be much more understanding of each other and far less judgemental of other people’s lifestyles, differences and opinions.
Is Caroline Flack another Love Island tragedy? I don’t know, but when anyone takes their life it is most definitely a tragedy!