Monica Lewinsky's new PSA gives you a terrifying inside look at what it's like to be cyberbullied
via The Epidemic / YouTube

There are few people on planet Earth that know what it feels like to be bullied quite like Monica Lewinsky.

In her early 20s, she became the focus of one of the biggest scandals in American history after engaging in a sexual relationship with former president Bill Clinton.

She was the butt of nighttime talk show jokes, harassed by politicians, and constantly pursued by the paparazzi. Twenty years later, she's survived the scandal and become a tireless advocate for helping those who've been bullied.


via White House Photograph Office / Wikimedia Commons

Given her experience with harassment, she saw it as time to "stick my head above the parapet so that I can take back my narrative and give a purpose to my past."

Being that the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal was at the onset of the internet-era she considered herself, "patient zero" of online harassment.

RELATED: Hillary Clinton was asked if Bill Clinton 'abused' Monica Lewinsky. Her response has ignited an important debate.

A 2018 report by Pew Research Center found that 59% of U.S. teens have been bullied or harassed online. "The bullying crisis has become a global epidemic," Lewinsky said on the TODAY show.

"It can be hard to see the signs of when someone's going through this and then, even worse than all of that is the fact that this behavior, with cyber-bullying, even though it takes place online, there are offline consequences, and these consequences can range from bad to grave," Lewisnky continued.

via Wikimedia Commons

To help spread awareness about the hidden evils of cyberbullying, she's partnered with The Epidemic to create a new interactive PSA that gives viewers an inside look at how this modern form harassment feels.

The campaign begins with an online video about a mystery illness affecting a teenager named Haley. "You see and feel firsthand how awful and devastating these messages can be," Lewinsky said.

Eventually, this illness leads her to overdose on pills.

At the end of the video, viewer are invited to share their phone numbers and are sent a link to the video. But this time it's accompanied by a barrage of text messages that give one a first-hand experience of how relentless and debilitating cyberbullying can be.

via The Epidemic


via The Epidemic


via The Epidemic


via The Epidemic


via The Epidemic

Cyberbullying is often mischaracterized as less harmful than face-to-face bullying. But it can be relentless and just as damaging psychologically. Cyberbullying can happen at any time, day or night and is impossible to escape.

This video is a powerful wake-up call to parents and teachers to show them just how painful and relentless this form of harassment can be.

To get help for cyberbullying, visit the Crisis text Line.

Photo courtesy of Justin Sather
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Upworthy and GoFundMe are celebrating ideas that make the world a better, kinder place. Visit upworthy.com/kindness to join the largest collaboration for human kindness in history and start your own GoFundMe.

While most 10-year-olds are playing Minecraft, riding bikes, or watching YouTube videos, Justin Sather is intent on saving the planet. And it all started with a frog blanket when he was a baby.

"He carried it everywhere," Justin's mom tells us. "He had frog everything, even a frog-themed birthday party."

In kindergarten, Justin learned that frogs are an indicator species – animals, plants, or microorganisms used to monitor drastic changes in our environment. With nearly one-third of frog species on the verge of extinction due to pollution, pesticides, contaminated water, and habitat destruction, Justin realized that his little amphibian friends had something important to say.

"The frogs are telling us the planet needs our help," says Justin.

While it was his love of frogs that led him to understand how important the species are to our ecosystem, it wasn't until he read the children's book What Do You Do With An Idea by Kobi Yamada that Justin-the-activist was born.

Inspired by the book and with his mother's help, he set out on a mission to raise funds for frog habitats by selling toy frogs in his Los Angeles neighborhood. But it was his frog art which incorporated scientific facts that caught people's attention. Justin's message spread from neighbor to neighbor and through social media; so much so that he was able to raise $2,000 for the non-profit Save The Frogs.

And while many kids might have their 8th birthday party at a laser tag center or a waterslide park, Justin invited his friends to the Ballona wetlands ecological preserve to pick invasive weeds and discuss the harms of plastic pollution.

Justin's determination to save the frogs and help the planet got a massive boost when he met legendary conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall.

Photo courtesy of Justin Sather

At one of her Roots and Shoots youth initiative events, Dr. Goodall was so impressed with Justin's enthusiasm for helping frogs, she challenged the young activist to take it one step further and focus on plastic pollution as well. Justin accepted her challenge and soon after was featured in an issue of Bravery Magazine dedicated to Jane Goodall.

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Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

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Purrington Cat Lounge, where "adoptable cats roam freely and await your visit" and patrons can pay a small entry fee for the chance to sip coffee alongside feline friends, boasted legendary adoption rates since its conception in January 2015.


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