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Today is our national day of action dedicated to reminding everyone to ask, “Are you OK?” in support of people who may be struggling with life’s ups and downs.

The stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health, although improving, is still very much apart of our culture. We have socially acceptable minimums for personality and behaviour that we typically hold everyone to, even if on a subconscious level.


“He didn’t even say hello back”…

“That woman was so rude”…

“All she does is talk about her own problems”…

“That guy gets irritated way too easily”…


Sadly, unless you experience some form of mental health problem yourself, it is very difficult to understand and therefore empathize with those you encounter, even harder when there may be no outwardly signs that they are struggling.

Mental health is a large part of my genetics. One of my uncles is schizophrenic and spent 6 years in the lock up ward of Greylands psychiatric hospital recently. A second cousin suffers hugely with manic depression and my mother (who many of you know and was happy for me to include her story) has been hospitalised at the Joondalup mental health unit multiple times. I started antidepressants during my final year of high school and have been on and off some form of medication most of my life for clinical depression and anxiety.

I personally know how challenging it can be to bridge that divide between those who know and those that don’t. Kristen, my wife, and I have been together almost everyday for over 15 years now and know one knows me better on this earth. However, it is still difficult for her to fully comprehend what I’m experiencing during more difficult periods.


As some you know, this coming February i will attempt to swim to Rottnest island from Cottesloe beach with many other hopefuls. I’ve always found setting and chasing large goals to be beneficial for my wellbeing and this is something i have wanted to attempt for over a decade. I have done many other large athletic challenges in the past but never tied a cause or fundraising effort to them as its purely been for myself. A friend of mine, Emma, recently took on a push up challenge and raise awareness through her efforts which has inspired me. This time, i want to raise awareness for men’s mental health through my own story and this new goal I’ve set myself.


I found an organisation called “LIVIN” through instagram and loved their message “It ain’t weak to speak”, trying to break to stigma by either sharing your own struggle and/or asking for help. I plan to post a blog update each month between now and the event (6 in total) sharing my own story, the training progress and more about men’s mental health. I would love for your interactions and financial support to help me give back to something close to me.



For now, i’d love your help to show anyone reading this just how prolific mental health is in our community by asking you to comment on the facebook post if you either suffer yourself or know someone close to you who does. My bet is if you take the time to reply, we will have a huge list of people who are touched by mental health issues which will be powerful in itself.


– Michael