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For World Mental Health Day, YouPorn wants you to confess your struggles

By Alma Fabiani

Oct 10, 2020

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Today is World Mental Health Day 2020, and what better day to share what you truly feel than on this special day? In culmination to this day, the porn video-sharing website YouPorn has partnered with the therapy platform BuddyHelp to launch 2020 Confessions. In response to the recent mental health crisis, this new confessional style category allows people to upload videos sharing their feelings in order to help clear their minds.

To truly support and give back to the cause, for every 1,000 video views, YouPorn revealed that it will be donating $100 to BuddyHelp. Here’s exactly how YouPorn and BuddyHelp want to help those in need manage their mental health.

“YouPorn believes that sharing experiences can help build community and ease feelings of isolation, which can also alleviate some of the mental health struggles currently affecting many. With this in mind, we have partnered with BuddyHelp to support their free online mental health service that connects callers with compassionate trained active listeners, and provides emotional support for when you just need someone to talk to,” reads the 2020 Confessions page.

In other words, both companies have teamed up because they believe that by simply speaking about mental health struggles, or struggles in general really, can be the first step towards getting help, if needed. After all, why do you think confessions are so important in specific religions? Because sharing personal feelings with someone, be that bad deeds or simply emotions, can not only make you feel better but can also lead to you receiving help.

Receiving help, in today’s digital age, is surprisingly not that easy. While we all gladly share perfectly-curated information about our lives, we’re less inclined to portray ourselves as individuals who also struggle with mental health problems. This new YouPorn category could become a safe haven where everyone can openly speak up about their feelings.

Screen Shot spoke to BuddyHelp founder David Braun about 2020 Confessions and what changes the platform could lead to. “BuddyHelp was born out of the global collective pain and suffering that the coronavirus brought upon the world. The lockdown was one of the most intense, and emotionally challenging experiences that many of us have ever lived,” explained Braun.

Shortly after, Braun was also confronted with an attempted suicide by someone close to him. “It became clear to me that I needed to take action, to do something and be part of the solution to the mental health crisis, rather than just standing by and watching as things evolved.” This was the moment that BuddyHelp was born.

BuddyHelp and YouPorn’s confessional style category differs from social media’s ‘one-to-many’ approach to communication—it offers people a place where they can be heard. The partnership aims to help as many people as possible using YouPorn’s important reach. When asked about other reasons behind this unlikely match, Braun added that “men are far less likely than women to seek support, and are also less likely to disclose a mental health problem to friends or family. As one result of this, the suicide rate of men is 3 to 4 times higher than that of women, in the western world.”

Because YouPorn has a primarily male user base (75 per cent), this makes it a particularly vulnerable audience when it comes to mental health. That’s why 2020 Confessions is an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of the resources that are available.

And so far, this has proved to be a successful attempt. “It’s been overwhelmingly positive so far. People react slightly surprised when they hear the words ‘YouPorn’ and ‘mental health’ in the same sentence, but then when they look at the fundamentals they see why it makes so much sense, and are then very supportive of the initiative,” shared Braun.

We are currently going through a mental health crisis. Many people around us, from gen Zers to millennials, have been feeling isolated and lonely due to lockdown measures. But keep in mind that this is only temporary, adds Braun: “As scary and as challenging as it might be in the moment, just know that it will pass. Be mindful of the duality of life, try to see the positive in the negative and know that with great change, comes great opportunity. It is a great moment to try something you’ve been putting off. Create something new, learn a new language or a new skill. As Darwin once said: ‘It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.’”

BuddyHelp’s mission is to democratise access to mental health care—removing all barriers and providing resources to all who need help because every human being deserves to feel their best. For World Mental Health Day, it is giving away 100,000 weeks of access to professional counselling for free. So, if you feel like this might be something you need or even just want to test, get on 2020 Confessions or BuddyHelp. If not, look at the different ways you can help others. Why not start by becoming a BuddyHelp volunteer listener?