What is it?
Boys Talk is an open, honest and safe space for anyone who identifies as a man. It is a peer support meeting for men to speak openly about their mental health, and to allow them to acknowledge the things in their lives impacting their well-being. There are many reasons attendees come to Boys Talk some of these include, but are absolutely not limited to: Abandonment, abuse, addiction, alcohol, anger, anxiety, baby loss, being a carer, being a victim of a crime, bipolar, body dysmorphia, BPD, breakdown of relationships, bullying, confidence, depression, disability, discrimination, domestic violence, drugs, family breakup, gender, grief, ill health, isolation, masculinity, money, obsessive thoughts, panic attacks, phobias, poverty, race, religion, self harm, self worth, sexuality, sleep, stress, suicide, therapy, trauma and work.
Why did it start?
Male suicide rates are higher than ever, and it is the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45. Men can often struggle to seek help until they reach a point of crisis. Many services that are readily available are expensive and those that are free can have long wait times. Talking about mental health is our strength not our weakness. It is often assumed that talking openly about our feelings is a sign of weakness and that men should show strength by staying silent, this is simply untrue. Showing your vulnerability and being willing and open to learn from it shows true strength and acceptance. Ben and Jack founding hosts of Boys Talk
What to expect?
The meetings were created to give space for men to comfortably discuss their mental health and well-being. Peer support as a model better equips us all to have better conversations about mental health, mental illness and mental well-being. Talking about mental health with people we know can actually feel harder. It can be difficult to listen without any judgement when we know the person, whereas a room full of strangers can feel safe. We listen without judgement to those who speak. At the beginning of each meeting, attendees take it in turns to introduce themselves and why they are attending. We also share our pronouns to create a safe space for all. From then on there is no pressure at all to speak, many people attend our meetings to listen. The host will then ask the group if anyone has anything they would like to bring in to the space. Whatever a person has to say is relevant and they are welcome to bring anything to the meeting. All attendees are asked to respect the privacy of the space and treat others and ourselves with kindness throughout.
Where is it?
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