I started watching because my mom and sisters watched. I loved the immersion into a world filled with fascinating characters, and there was a comfort in knowing that these characters would always be there every day at a certain time.
Certainly these past few months of working from home has reconnected me with the soaps, and I loved rewatching the classic episodes (well Y&R was the only that actually aired classics).
Like most of us here, I’ve had a lifetime of investment in these shows, and that’s hard to part ways with. Even in their depleted state, there is some comfort in seeing familiar faces and actors who can still bring it in spite of the diminished quality of the writing. I sometimes just have it on as background noise during the day, since it doesn’t require my full attention, and it’s better than the news, which I find harmful and manipulative. And I’m not sure I’d still be watching soaps if not for the community here. But I just tried to watch a bit of the new Y&R and turned it off. The dialogue on the show almost feels like it was computer-generated.