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Thursday, 14 August 2014

Behind the Smile

I've been struggling with writing this post for the last couple of days. I wrote it, I deleted it, I wrote it again. I saved it. And here I am again, re-writing, editing, thinking... and I'm still not sure I want
to post it... but here it is.

Monday night I was at a family dinner celebrating my parents' birthdays. Out of the blue my brother-in-law says "Oh my God, Robin Williams killed himself!" Understandably, everyone's reaction was the same: "What?!" And over the past couple of days we've been inundated with posts about his life, his amazing works, and perhaps not surprisingly quite a few posts about mental illness, specifically depression.

Let me be clear: The last flipping thing I want to do is capitalise on the unfortunate and very sad death of someone who brought millions of people joy and laughter. That is NOT the point of this post. In fact, not referring to it in my blog has been my main reason for not posting this piece again and again over the past few days. But I just have to speak to something that I keep seeing in the media and on facebook and twitter.

Almost all of the posts that take issue with people's reaction to Robin Williams' death start with or reference the tweet that Evan Rachel Wood & The Academy posted: