Men Are Hurting
We need to make safe spaces (locationally and emotionally) for men to have deeper conversations with each other. Difficult conversations. Transformative conversations.
Where men can ask for and offer support without fear of being emasculated.
Men feel obligated to ‘hold it together’ even when it feels like things are falling apart. This can prevent us from admitting that we’re hurting and not coping. It stops us from seeking or receiving help. The results can be painful, even catastrophic for us and the people around us.
This is something we need to address in our families, in our communities and in our workplaces.
My observation is that a woman is invited and encouraged to draw upon the wisdom and support of her “sisterhood”, whereas a man is far more likely to try to resolve external problems and internal conflict on his own.
Men don’t have to go it alone. We need to be encouraged to ask for help, and we need other men to speak up when they see a mate in need.
A gentle “You don’t seem yourself – tell me about what’s going on for you?” might begin a conversation that makes a world of difference to your friend or colleague.
Often the hardest thing about what threatens to be a difficult conversation is getting it started. You may be surprised how liberating it is to share your thoughts with someone who will listen and care.
Opening the door a crack will allow some light in to illuminate even the darkest room.
If you’re a man and don’t know who you can talk to, services such as beyondblue offer support via the phone or their website.
We make ourselves, our families, and our communities better when we look out for each other. Have the courage to speak up when you see a mate who is hurting and be an example to your son, your dad, your friends and colleagues. It’s time we opened up to the fact that men are hurting and do something about it.