Somebody told me today that at least 600 young people in New Zealand last year took their own lives. That we have one of the highest rates of teen suicide per capita in the entire world yet we are a country known for its social diversity and positive lifestyles.
I’m here to break it to you that we aren’t doing a very good job at upholding that clean green image. Unfortunately, our country suffers from a culture where it’s still disenfranchising to talk about how you are feeling or what you’re going through.
Where the male culture is subjected to this starving dog mentality that because we are brutes we ought to be shooed outside to independently find a solution to fix our own issues but that’s bullshit.
Coming from a guy with a second degree black belt in Taekwon-Do, a double majoring student and a whole range of other tough sounding character filtering mechanisms I’m proud to admit that I have feelings.
There’s no point in trying to prove to you that I have a credible background in being as tough as nails because I’m not. There have been tougher people before me and there will be tougher guys after me. But what I’m trying to say is that wanting to be humble is something that should be encouraged not discriminated against.
All people should be able to reflect on how they are feeling, especially with guys. Look, lads… I know it’s easy to roast one another about stupid shit like not being able to admit that you genuinely care about one another or how one guy is more emotional than the rest but it’s irrelevant. Being able to connect with people from a guys perspective takes balls,
I miss my ex. It’s never easy alienating yourself from them when you’ve established such strong connections. Even for a dude, like there are clear reasons why guys need girls in their lives and it’s not about sex or about fitting into the social sphere but it’s about having someone you can bounce ideas off and cry about things with.
At the beginning, it was made clear that this chat would be a bit soppy but it’s something that we guys should be happy to talk about. It’s not natural to create a deep and intimate relationship with someone and then separate from that person. Pain and all of that other crap happen after a relationship break-up and I’m here to tell you I’m feeling those vibes every single day now even though it’s been a while.
Don’t hate on another dude because he’s struggling, let him rant about that stuff, it hurts. Humbling oneself takes courage so respect that don’t discriminate against it. There is a problem in little old New Zealand and as much as our government would love to blame the economics it’s more than that, it comes down to the way we normalise social processes, it’s how we deal with depression, anxiety and stress.
If we have no outlet then what do we do? Turn to the bottle? The bong? The cell phone? We should be able to knock on our neighbour’s door and let them know that we aren’t doing okay. There should be a premise for that but more often than not guys don’t get that opportunity.
I’m not saying girls don’t have equal footing in this discriminatory culture we live in because they do. But the statistics show that in particular, it is Maori Male men living in NZ with the highest rate of teen suicide than any other demographic, so there’s clearly an issue here.
Young people need to be able to speak out if the culture is going to change here in New Zealand and it’s clear that this isn’t the case. We should be able to feel proud about being alive and being who we are because we are people with value and were put here for a reason, male or female. Loved or ex-partnered.