R U OK Day. 09/September/2022
No we are not okay !
R U OK day & Movember are great in theory.
Don't get me wrong It’s raised an enormous amount of awareness. But awarness just isn't cutting it.
“Awareness” isn’t the problem
At some point talk is cheap and actions speak louder than words and it's clear to me that awareness isn’t moving the needle.
Having celebrities be the face & represent the message has it's purpose, they bring awareness in that moment and it heightens their public profile, as soon as they stop talking and appearing on media platforms all is forgotten. They make no major long-term difference.
(on average 6 out of 10 men take their lives every day)
( on average 80% of homeless people are men aged between 12 & 30 years of age in Victoria )
( on average the majority of facilities for men to be cared for is extremely low )
So today you can keep all the bows and whistles because men are not OK. They are killing themselves at astronomical rates. Men feel more alone than ever.
We are not OKAY with corporate box-events and slapping each other on the backs.
Not OKAY with the majority of government funding earmarked for crisis support instead of early intervention.
Not OKAY with hosting events with cupcakes & growing beards for Movember for the sake of recognition.
And not OKAY with the current system that is just barley available to men in need.
As a nation, we’re more aware of the mental health problems facing Australian men and men around the world than ever before. But “awareness” isn’t the problem.
Early intervention is what is required & required immediately.
The lack of focus on early intervention, as opposed to critical response, means that blokes have limited tools and knowledge of how to get their head right before things get out of hand.
In Australia, huge sums of public money are dished out every year to crisis support services such as Lifeline and Beyond Blue & R U OK.
You wouldn’t wait until a life threatening illness is in its final stages to act, so why do we place so much emphasis on these services that do nothing to address and ameliorate mental health concerns in their earliest stages?
If you’re in a moment of crisis, these services can be helpful. But we NEED to create a culture of early intervention. get men to level up & women to support men to talk about what's happening inside their heads regardless how stubborn they can be.
Going to the doctor for a physical check-up before you get sick is encouraged. Let’s normalise talking about our mental health in the same way for all men.
If you know anyone in need or even yourself contact the organizations below.