“I love you… and I’m done.”
These words said by a man sitting quietly in a chair, hunched over a note in his hand, strikes a painful chord.
A new PSA (Public Service Announcement) by Movember Foundation features men reading out suicide notes they’d written. These are words which could have reflected their last moments if they hadn’t spoken to others and received help. Today, even as they have the courage to reflect on this, these letters are strong enough to shake them, to bring some of them close to tears. And this brings us to an all-important question: with suicide rates among men rising through the years, why aren’t we talking about it? Why do we sell the idea of the stoic man, unable to openly discuss his emotions without somehow failing some ideal of ‘masculinity’? Toxic ‘masculinity’ is literally killing men and it’s time we sit up and realise this.
Men, we need to talk. Go to weneedtotalk.movember.com for more information on how to start important conversations and share this video to keep the conversation going.
To speak with someone immediately, contact your local 24-hour crisis support service. Details are listed on weneedtotalk.movember.com. #weneedtotalk #WSPD #movember
Globally, the rate of suicide is alarmingly high, particularly in men. Around the world, on average we lose a man to suicide every minute of every day. This is a social crisis that demands our immediate action.
The intention of this campaign from the Movember Foundation is to give male suicide the urgent attention it deserves and to take a bold stand towards protecting men’s health.
It’s all about igniting conversations. Important conversations about suicide, the complex issues that surround it and what everyone can do to address it. Conversations that we hope will save countless lives and prevent the far-reaching and painful consequences for the families, friends and communities of the men we tragically lose everyday. It’s an uncomfortable conversation, but it’s one we know we need to have.
Too many men are ‘toughing it out’, keeping their feelings to themselves and struggling alone with their issues. It’s time to break this silence and recognize that a key to overcoming even the biggest problems is for men to talk more. Not about trivial stuff, but about the significant changes and challenges going on in their lives – things like difficulties with work or finances, the breakdown of a relationship, overwhelming family responsibilities or a significant set back. These things happen regularly and, for some, have the potential to derail or be more overwhelming than they’d imagined.
This campaign tackles male suicide with a powerful but simple message… “Men, let’s talk when things get tough”. Like everything the Movember Foundation does, it’s been important that this message is delivered with realness and authenticity. That’s why the stories of men with a personal experience of suicide are featured in the video. They are the most powerful voices in suicide prevention – they truly understand the challenges and are proof that there is a brighter future ahead. Family members and friends who have lost men to suicide have also had a significant role in shaping our message. We’re extremely grateful to the many passionate people who have invested their ideas, hearts and stories into this campaign.
This campaign forms part of the Movember Foundation’s suicide prevention strategic approach – encouraging men to reach out, particularly during times of change and when things get tough, and to take action sooner rather than later to reduce the risk of suicide.
Our number one priority in creating this video was to do no harm. The messages and images were developed through extensive consultation with mental health and suicide prevention experts, clinicians and those with a lived experience of suicide. The story of resilience in the resolution of the message is designed specifically to give hope and empower the community to take positive action to help reduce male suicide.