Move on over, Zalfie — we’ve got a new power-couple occupying our screen (and heart) right now…
Cutie-pies Shoshana and Meredith Bratton created their channel Shosh and Mer (you see why they called it that?) way back in ye olde 2013. When visa issues stopped the two being able to live in the same city – Shosh is from the UK, while Mer is from New York City in the US-of-A – they were forced to become a transatlantic couple.
Shosh says they decided to start up the channel so that they could “look back on the good times, while we figured out how to solve the issues keeping us apart”. AWH. Like, come on. SO much AWH.
The couple’s channel is a mish-mash of all kinds of lovely YouTube-y stuff, including challenges, heated discussions on social justice issues, and tutorials such as how to make the best honey cake ever. That’s quite a title to live up to, ladies; we’re blaming you if it all goes wrong in our kitchen.
The two got hitched in 2014 and shared a video of their special day with the YouTubiverse. “I never even thought I’d be able to get married,” says Mer, “so it’s been nice to see how people have reacted and to feel that support from all over the globe.”
GUYS QUICK! GET MORE ‘AWHS’ IN HERE, WE’RE RUNNING OUT!
The two are never shy to help anyone struggling with their identity or LGBTQ+ issues. For example, in their Problems in Pyjamas series, the girls answer difficult questions sent in by their audience in order to give advice and wise sage-like candidness.
Shosh says the best thing you can do is to talk about it. “My biggest mistake with mental health was probably hiding it and trying to battle it alone. If no one knows you’re struggling, they won’t know you need help either,” she says.
Mer agrees. “Don’t try to be who someone else has defined you as, just be who you are. You define who you are and no one else does,” she says.
In order to be together, Mer moved to the UK, and she admits it was a hard transition at first. “I was very homesick when I first arrived, but I’ve been very successful in keeping myself busy to take my mind off that,” she says.
But she does have a lot of positive things to say about living o-vuh ‘ear (convincing accent, no?). “My favourite thing is Shoshana and the life we’ve built together,” says Mer. “I wouldn’t live here without her (or our cat). Almost too good.”
How do these two stay so irresistibly adorable? It’s not cool. We’re far too sassy to pull off cutesy vibes, but we’re trying! *grimaces awkwardly*
As part of YouTube’s Dear Me campaign celebrating International Women’s Day in 2015, Shosh wrote a letter to her past self in the hopes of inspiring a generation of young women. (Gr8, right?) But does she have any advice for future Shosh?
“Lots of things!,” says Shosh. “On the list is improving my public speaking skills, having just become a school role model for Stonewall charity. I’m super excited to see where my illustration takes me next.
“Right now, I’m in the midst of a project collaborating with a writer that’s going to reach orphans in Lesotho,” she continues. “I’m also currently coordinating a styled lesbian wedding photoshoot here in London. I’m hoping the shoot will challenge the UK wedding industry’s lack of diversity.”
You’re getting a whole lot done, aren’t ya? Future Shosh will be so proud!
Both agree that they want to be more open and even show their own vulnerabilities more on their channel. “We talk about mental health and sexuality, but we’ve been quite vague with labels at times because of the stigma often attached to them,” says Shosh. “If no one stands up as a representative of someone who’s survived pyschosis or biphobia, then these stereotypes are going to keep flying high.”
“Life has tons of question marks and we’re faced with them each day,” adds Mer. “I’d like to be honest with myself on certain topics which would mean me being vulnerable. I don’t doubt that I’ll get there one day.”
Well, us at TenEighty HQ think you’re gonna ROCK THE FUTURE (right). Like Backstreet Boys? What do you mean you don’t know who the Backstreet Boys are?!