Entries in Suicide & Self-Harm (56)


Men, Unemployment and Suicide: Australia 2014. A Social and Political Issue - NOT a ‘Mental Health’ Diagnosis

By Anthony Smith, Industry Partner to the NHMRC Center for Research Excellence in Suicide Prevention (CRESP).

This Paper is an extension of an earlier Paper from 2012. A summarised version of the 2012 Paper was published in the Report Obsessive Hope Disorder - Reflections on 30 Years of Mental Health Reform in Australia and Visions for the Future.

Recent research policy and practice around men, unemployment and suicide are highlighted to motivate effective action on this issue. There is now very broad acknowledgement of the particular challenge around unemployment and suicide as it relates to men.

Responsive effective and appropriate action, however, is hard to find.

To read the full article in PDF format, click here.


13 Reasons it is Unlucky to be Male

An abridged version of this article appeared as an op-ed in the Newcastle Herald on November 17, 2012.

November 19 is International Men’s Day: a time to promote male role models; to celebrate men’s contributions to society; to focus on men’s health and wellbeing; to highlight discrimination against males; and to improve gender relations and promote gender equality.

As someone who wants both my son and my daughter to flourish across all areas of life, I am frequently reminded that our society and media do a particularly poor job of highlighting and addressing areas in which males face disadvantage. Thankfully we have women’s offices, ministries and NGOs working tirelessly to improve the areas in which women still fare poorly. This is not the case for men.

We seem to have a cultural blind spot around men and gender politics. When a man has a problem, it is frequently seen as his own fault, whereas women’s problems are more often attributed to others or to society. For example, we hear that men are to blame for their own poor health (“men don’t go to the doctor”), whereas young women’s high levels of eating disorders are blamed upon the cultural pressure to be thin.

The portrayals of men in modern day media are often negative – as violent murderers, wife bashers, sexual abusers, deadbeat dads, and bumbling idiots – even though, in reality, only a small proportion of men act out these roles and behaviours. This compounds the lack of compassion for men’s issues.

Our society often assumes that ‘men have it good’ and only women carry the burden of gender-based disadvantage. The evidence strongly contradicts this. Here are 13 areas in which men and boys need our help. I would ask that you picture an important male in your life as you read them – be it your son, brother, husband, best mate or father. Many thanks to Glen Poole from the Men’s Network in England for the idea for this article.

Click to read more ...


Regional Suicide Prevention Consultations: 10 July to 13 August 2012 (NSW)

The Hon. Mr Kevin Humphries MP, Minister for Mental Health, recently established the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Suicide Prevention as part of the implementation of the NSW Suicide Prevention Strategy 2010-2015.

Using the NSW Strategy as a reference point, the Minister has directed the Committee to undertake a series of community engagement and consultation workshops. The purpose of these workshops is to consult and work with communities to identify how locally based responses could be better supported to prevent acts of self harm and suicide as well as deal with the flow on impacts when these cases occur.

The workshops will concentrate on the current situation in relation to suicide and suicide prevention across NSW, with a particular focus on its unique impact within each region. Participants will be invited to discuss the specific needs required by each locality to reduce the incidence of suicide in their area, as well as how communities then wish to move forward in building awareness and preventing acts of self harm and suicide in the future.

Click to read more ...


A Father’s Day downer (USA)


Dustin Hoffman in 1979's "Kramer vs. Kramer." Children need their fathers!

How courts and the culture disrespect dad

By Barbara Kay / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, Sunday, June 17, 2012, 4:47 AM

From the loving, engaged portrayals of fathers featured in recent popular movies like “The Descendants,” “Moneyball” and “A Better Life” — all three performances were nominated for Academy Awards — one might conclude American dads are culturally valued.

Look again. The mothers in these films are comatose, divorced or dead. It’s no coincidence. From Atticus Finch to today, there’s an unspoken Hollywood rule that fathers can’t shine too brightly in the face of active mothering. Dads are more likely to be accorded respect when they are “coping” — in effect, when they are surrogate mothers.

Click to read more ...


The Blokes' Book

The Blokes' Book is a directory of services available to men across a broad range of health and wellbeing areas including crisis services, relationships, fathering, eating right, being active, weight control, alcohol and drug use, preventable diseases, suicide prevention, legal and financial support, etc. It also encourages men to be proactive in taking control over their physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing.

Download Ver 1.0 here as pdf (2Mb)

10,000 hard copies are also being distributed throughout Perth and regional WA during June 2012. 

If you would like to have hard copies sent to you, you can request these via

The Blokes' Book is produced by the Men's Advisory Network (MAN) Inc and funded by the WA Department of Health.