iMatter was launched on Valentines day this year. Aimed at young people, specifically young women it is designed to get you thinking about what’s healthy and what isn’t healthy in a relationship. While it’s quick to download the app the first time you open it takes a while as it loads the content. It’s not surprising though because it has links to and holds a lot of information. Probably the most impressive information is the list of resources in every country available for victims of domestic violence and abusive relationships. You can find this in the Find Support menu. Unfortunately this section isn’t on the main, you have to click on the top left hand menu icon for a further drop down menu.
The main screen consists of four items; inspiration, videos, blogs and quizzes. These items hold a range of quotes and images that you can favourite or share with your Facebook and twitter accounts if you allow the app to link with them. There are also a number of video’s that are linked from YouTube. Again you can favourite these links and share with your other social media accounts. There are a few different types of messages around empowering women, improving your self esteem, recognising the early signs of abuse and the difference between healthy and unhealthy relationships. I really liked this section of the app and can see myself sending a range of clients to these links not only for help in their relationships with others but also for help in their relationship with themselves. There are a few links to blogs, some specifically around relationships but others around finding happiness and looking after yourself, which I think adds to the app and makes it more than a tool to detect unhealthy relationships but a reminder of the need for looking after your whole self, not just the relationships you are in.
The other two areas of information the app offers are quizzes and a Mymatter section. There are two quizzes, one to identify if you have a friend in an unhealthy relationship and the other for yourself. They are both short and give you a score and feedback at the end. They cover the signs of abuse well and the quick process makes them very user friendly. Finally the last section is the Mymatter section. Here you will find a diary for recording events, thoughts and feelings and a series of lists you can create around relationship deal breakers, 5 ways of improving my self esteem and other relevant lists. This feature does personalise the app a little more but to be honest it doesn’t have an option to lock the app or enter a password so your partner or anyone who gets a hold of your phone could access this information so I’d be a little careful about what I recorded in there.
Overall it’s a great user friendly resource to help identify the warning signs and access support and help. It is worth downloading and spreading the word given that 1 in every 3 relationships ends in abuse of one kind or another.
What’s good about it: The information is provided in a visually appealing way. How many apps around mental health has long lists of text based information. It’s refreshing to watch a video by a peer, or watch a reproduction of a relationship play out in front of you.
What’s not so good: There is no password to protect others from looking at any information you want to store in the Mymatter section – which given one of the warning signs of an abusive relationship is your partner checking your phone is a little concerning.