Actor Joe Tracini has been flooded with support after he was attacked by a vile troll online.
The former Hollyoaks star, who has helped to keep the nation smiling during the coronavirus pandemic with his comical dance tutorial videos, has spoken out after a Twitter user said he reminded her of the disgraced late TV and radio host Jimmy Savile.
Joe, who played loveable Dennis Savage in the Channel Four soap, took to the social media to inform his followers about the trolling.
He shared two videos with the words: "We’re all trying to collectively not die at the moment.
"And stuff like this doesn’t help. ‘It’s so much easier to be nice than it is to be an a**e."
"I’ve got a rule,’ said the 32-year-old.
"That I don’t do a video about something until a week after it’s happened so that I’ve dealt with it.
"It’s a week after this happened, still haven’t dealt with it. Going to do a video anyway!"
He explained: "I got a tweet from a lady last week that said that I make her flesh crawl and that I remind her of Jimmy Savile.
"I have a lovely experience online. People are so nice to me, especially given the stuff that I talk about, but if I get a compliment my brain will chew that once and spit it out.
"If I get an insult, that s**t is swallowed and digested."
He added in his second video: " For every hundred nice messages I get, I get one from an absolute donkey.
"There is a chance if you tell somebody about your brain, you’ll get the donkey. But, for every donkey, they are another 99 people that give a s**t."
Joe, the son of comedian Joe Pasquale, has been a radical voice for mental health awareness on social media.
He has borderline personality disorder (BPD) and has opened up about depression and having suicidal thoughts.
Followers rushed to support the popular star.
"You are the one person who inspired me to talk about my mental health online," one told him.
"I hear you about the insults, digesting one as I speak, but trust me, you're invaluable to this world, and I hope you realise how many you inspire to keep living, just by letting us see your truth."
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Another said: "Love you Joe. The fact you have the grace to call her a lady in the first video speaks volumes.
"I’d use a different word and it wouldn’t be donkey either."
Another told him: "Joe, you lift so many people up with your videos, your dancing... you make us feel less alone in the flaming volcano that is life rn.
"We may only be virtual ATM but you have a full-out, Coliseum-filling ensemble behind you."
And another messaged: "I love your videos, your openness and honesty is amazing and I can imagine has helped so many realise that they aren’t alone.
"You keep doing you, cos you are brilliant."
Samaritans (116 123) samaritans.org operates a 24-hour service available every day of the year. If you prefer to write down how you’re feeling, or if you’re worried about being overheard on the phone, you can email Samaritans at [email protected] , write to Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK, PO Box 9090, STIRLING, FK8 2SA and visit www.samaritans.org/branches to find your nearest branch.
Mind 0300 123 3393 Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm) promotes the views and needs of people with mental health problems. Visit www.mind.org.uk
CALM (0800 58 58 58) thecalmzone.net has a helpline is for men who are down or have hit a wall for any reason, who need to talk or find information and support. They're open 5pm to midnight, 365 days a year.
SANE (0300 304 7000) Emotional support, information and guidance for people affected by mental illness, their families and carers, daily, 4.30pm to 10.30pm. Visit www.sane.org.uk/support
For information on your local NHS urgent mental health helpline, visit here