Posted by: Brie | October 14, 2012

Reflections on Amanda Todd’s Choice and Community

I am wracked with pain over the recent death of Amanda Todd, whose devastating line-up of experiences lead to her choice to end her life.  Having worked with young women for over a decade to inspire their sense of confidence and community, I am moved to speak to this issue.  
In a fleeting single moment informed by vulnerability, Amanda Todd made a choice that changed the course of her destiny.  She objectified herself to find external affirmation because that experience outshone what it was for her to source it from within.  Her choice represents that of hundreds that have simply gone unseen.  It speaks to a sexually exploiting cultural fabric in which young women are challenged to know their own boundaries, to say nothing of their true and inherent worth. Youth are taught roles and value before they have the maturity to moderate their understanding of where stereotypes are coming from.  A culture that presents such a narrow range of options for whole construction of identity is not a healthy one.  Nor is one in which one man’s deleterious choice to blackmail – enough harm done – eilicits a domino effect: a whole troop of youth bring physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual violence to an aching member of their community.
As a society, we are all accountable.  Amanda’s death is a call to action.  We must bring medicine to remedy the social malheurs that befall our communities.  This I know is true:  Youth are sensitive and emotional; they move with inspiration or desparation.  They are vulnerable, but taught their own strength, are courageous as hell.  Connection and community forge pathways through the fearful social climate they navigate every day.  What if the youth around Amanda had learned healthy, constructive, and non-violent communication strategies to find their way clear?  What if Amanda Todd had known the value of loving the skin she’s in?  What if media literacy were considered as valuable as literacy and young women were taught to take a stand not only for the legacy they want to create, but for the value of community and connectivity in creating it.  What if a young woman was taught to value her substance, complexity, and unique humanity more than her body parts?  
I believe in the power of social change movements.
Join me by lighting a candle this evening and setting an intention for the world you want to see.  May we begin by contemplating the light that shines within us.  From this recognition, what world can we envision?  What one thing will you do for a teen in your life today?  What conversation will you have tomorrow?  What will you teach?  Who will you be?
Yours in creating a more loving world for young women,


  1. Reblogged this on Carol Todd's Snowflakes.

  2. […] […]

  3. Reblogged this on andrewschumann.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: