There is still a clear stigma in Australia around mental health and vulnerability, despite the progress of recent years. That stigma is perhaps most prevalent in young Australian men.
Many have grown up thinking that it is weak to talk about feelings, to cry, or show any form of vulnerability.
But, the tide is turning. If there is one positive to have come out of the pandemic, it is that people are starting to realise it is ok to drop the guard around our emotions.
The big shift is in now seeing mental health as a community priority.
The Male Hug’s Talktober campaign is one of many addressing stigma and negative attitudes around mental health, particularly among men.
Throughout October, the campaign invites people to get involved in the Talktober challenge: to make 31 calls in 31 days to check in on friends, family members or work colleagues to see how they are coping.
It provides men with a great opportunity to open up about their feelings and any struggles they may be experiencing. (It is amazing the positive impact of this simple act of connection – just a call – on someone who may be feeling isolated or troubled by negative thoughts.)
You can also start a fundraiser to sit alongside your campaign. Doing this will help The Male Hug to continue building on their programs and support networks.
So, if you would like to learn more about the 2021 Talktober campaign and how you can get involved, visit The Male Hug’s website at: https://themalehug.com.au/talktober/
If this information raised any concerns for you, please do speak to your GP, they can help you back to good health, or call a helpline: LIFELINE 13 11 14 or BeyondBlue 1300 22 4636.