Anxiety: The new trend in society

Social media has some of the biggest influencers in 2019 to the public. They gain money from sponsorships and spreading messages to thousands of social media users. Social media influencers are seen as digital idols, but things get out of hand when influencers exploit mental health illnesses to become more popular.  Corrina Kopf, a well known YouTuber, received negative backlash from subscribers and viewers after her “Pouty Girl Merchandise” was released. A t-shirt with the words ‘My anxieties have anxieties’ on it and a hoodie that defines the mental illness on the back. Viewers have made it very clear that profiting off of health issues is not something audiences want.

Many viewers believe the branding is boring and shows no effort into making the product. Many viewers also believe it was a lazy way to be relatable to people with these issues and to get more buyers. Mental illnesses aren’t things to make money off of, and Corina is clearly using mental illness as a platform for publicity and money, even though she informs viewers that only 15% of her earnings will go to the Anxiety Depression Association of America (ADAA). 

Though others have agreed that the trend is outrageous, there are a few who see no wrong with profiting from the mental illness. Making other people’s suffering something relatable and trendy is never a good idea. There is no way people should think this is controversial, it’s a problem. Generally speaking, it is impolite to speak of people’s well being when they aren’t completely stable and healthy, making merchandise of mental illnesses takes that concept out of the roof. It seems like a violation to those struggling with anxiety. It would be ill-mannered to do this with anything physical, so why should anything mental be different. 

People are now throwing around the word depressed as if it were another synonym for sad, or the simple feeling of wanting to stay home as evidence for anxiety, and society has now incorporated it in consumerism to have us pay for the “trends” of mental illness, with no acknowledgement for the pains of it. Diluting the very seriousness of it.