A hashtag and campaign aimed at halving male suicide in five years…
There are a lot of stupid hashtags that make our eyes roll. But here’s one that’s trending that we can fully get behind.
Started by UK rugby player Luke Ambler after the suicide of his brother-in-law, #itsokaytotalk is all about sharing the simple message that men don’t have to keep their feelings bottled up as generations of macho conditioning has demanded.
It’s about talking about suicide, which is the leading cause of death in Australian men aged 15 to 44.
Feeling sad? Feeling bad? Feeling depressed? Worried? Scared? Open up to your mates, your brothers and cousins, sisters and parents, your girlfriends and wives, priests, counselors and anyone else you trust.
Many deaths could be prevented if men in despair felt comfortable breaking down artificial barriers and talking about their lives. Not just what happened on the weekend or their cars or jobs or footy teams—the real stuff that makes us tick as people: hopes and problems, shames and joys, worries and dreams.
It starts with us. Talk and you’ll be surprised at how well people will listen. Listen when others need to talk. Reach out a hand to those in need—or reach out your hand when you’re in need.