The news of Charlotte Dawson’s death is very sad. Charlotte had a very public battle with depression and finally decided to take her own life.
We can only imagine how much pain she was in and how painful this is to those close to her and love her. No matter how much we love someone and how much we try to help them we never know for sure what is going on in the depths of another person’s heart and mind (Proverbs 17:25). And I am sure that those around her wished they could have prevented the fatal outcome.
What we do know is that Charlotte Dawson was a victim of abuse and deeply impacted by it. Given up for adoption by her teenage birth mother, suffering sexual abuse at the hands of an elderly neighbour, it seems that she also chose men who tended to want to be in control. Then when she made her depression public, she was abused by twitter trolls.
While every person is responsible for their own actions and reactions, it is important to understand that our words, our attitudes and actions signal to people whether they are valuable or not. These can have very significant effects.
I think that this is one of the reasons why Jesus said that the second greatest commandment, to love your neighbour as yourself, is like the first (to love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and strength).
If we love others as ourselves we cannot just speak to them and use them as we please for ourselves and our own ends.
May there be less people who feel the need to end their life because significant people in their circle give them positive messages about their worth.
God loves every person. We should too.
This youtube video is of an interview 18/08/11 ‘Mia chats to Charlotte Dawson’