Pretty, poised, perfect little Amanda Holden loses her baby seven months into pregnancy and everyone is either talking or tweeting about it.
Why should we feel such overwhelming compassion for a woman we don’t even know - especially when the same tragedy strikes 4,000 non-famous women in this country every year?
Amanda’s heartbreaking loss is no greater than theirs. Including my friend’s son’s girlfriend of 20, who lost her baby at 38 weeks of pregnancy this Christmas. Her little boy had just two weeks to go to take his first breath.
But everyone knows who Amanda is. They’ve seen her on the telly, read about her divorce from Les Dennis, her affair with Neil Morrissey, her Botox habits...
The loss suffered by an “ordinary” mum-to-be is felt only by her close-knit circle of family and friends. But when it happens to someone like Amanda, the ripples are wide-reaching.
It’s the Kylie effect. And surely it’s a good thing. It makes people stop for a second and feel a wave of sympathy for a total stranger and ponder on a situation they have never had the great misfortune to experience. The fact, too, that a life as seemingly charmed as a celebrity’s can be just as cursed as ours is also a poignant reminder that money and fame are far from the most important things in life.