Following the death of Caroline Flack last month, Whitmore’s moving tribute to the former Love Island presenter fueled the #bekind movement on social media, with Whitmore herself advocating for greater consideration when it came to posting comments online.
“Caroline loved to love,” she said during her BBC Radio 5 Live show on 16 February. “That’s all she wanted. Which is why a show like Love Island was important to her, because the show is about finding love, friendship, having a laugh. The problem wasn’t the show. The show is loving and caring and safe and protected.
“The problem is, the outside world is not. Anyone who has ever compared one woman against another on Twitter, knocked someone because of their appearance, invaded someone else’s privacy, who have made mean, unnecessary comments on an online forum – they need to look at themselves.
“Be kind, only you are responsible for how you treat others and what you put out in the world.”
Now, in an interview on the red carpet at the We Day UK charity event which celebrates young people, Whitmore has spoken honestly about her experiences with online trolling – and revealed how she copes with “really negative” comments.
“We all experience different things, everyone’s experienced trolling to different levels, maybe because of what you do, but everyone’s experienced that. And when you realise that, you realise it’s not about you” the Love Island presenter told Sky News.
“I remember having a message from somebody that was really negative. I just clicked on their profile and they had sent that message to, like, everybody. And I’m like, oh, this isn’t even a personal attack. This is somebody who has their own issues and you can’t be angry at them, because that somebody – whatever they have to deal with – they have to deal with it.
“It’s really tough because it’s constantly changing.”
Continuing that message in another interview, Whitmore advocated for everyone to be a bit kinder to themselves, too.
“We’re all human, and growing up you learn that the world isn’t always kind,” she told the PA news agency. “My number one thing is be kind to yourself. We can’t control what other people do, we can only control what we do.
“We can be kind to others and kind to ourselves – and what anyone else decides to do is up to them. We can just be responsible to ourselves.”