A problem shared is a problem solved.
This is the motto Kirrawee’s Russell Hagan, 41, wants to get out there, to help men understand that it’s OK to feel down.
His new online forum aims to encourage men to share their struggles.
‘Been there, done that, let’s chat’ is a website for blokes to vent – about problems they may be facing, and maybe gain a little support from others going through the same thing.
Mr Hagan is launching the site during Men’s Health Week (June 11-17). The theme of this year’s event is ‘men and families: making healthy connections.’
It comes as the NSW government also recently announced that round-the-clock supervision of mental health units and targets to reduce the use of seclusion will be introduced under a plan to significantly improve mental health care.
Mr Hagan will also host live weekly webinars, where he will answer and discuss questions from members, who can have exclusive access to the digital content for $20 a month.
Each month there will be a well-known Australian identity interviewed, such as Sharks player Josh Dugan.
“The interviews will be pretty unscripted and they will be simple chats about problems men can have in their lives and how they overcome it,” Mr Hagan said.
“You see a lot of blokes walking the streets that look like they have it all together.
“The main purpose is to get the point across that we all need to talk.
“The idea is to make the everyday Aussie bloke realise that everyone has some sort of issue.”
The father of four hopes his own journey will inspire others.
“I was afraid to talk to someone but when I finally did, it was a huge relief,” he said.
“I believe this will encourage men to open up and provide that first step – getting them to talk.
“People can go under an alias and talk about anything – getting sacked from their job, relationships issues or mortgage stress.
“There will be different forums – for dads who don’t see their kids much, the gay community, for ex-veterans, all who can share their thoughts.”