From Sad Blokes to Well Men: Changing the focus in the prevention of male suicide and depression - Nelson

18 November - 9:00am - 18 November 2019 - 4:30pm

It's time to take depression and suicide in men out of the too hard basket​


"Well men matter. 

It matters that men are able to optimise their wellbeing. It matters that men are over-represented in poor mental health and suicide statistics.  

Well men contribute to a well society. And equally unwell men affect the wellbeing of the society.  

Helping men and boys to transition from dead or sad blokes to well men must be our focus."

TaylorMade Training and Consulting offers the opportunity to hear from an internationally respected commentator and suicidologist, Barry Taylor.  Learn more about the phenomenon of suicide in men and what needs to be done locally and nationally to address the ongoing upward trend in the numbers of men experiencing depression amd anxiety or ending their lives.

Based on 30 years’ experience of working with men who are depressed and suicidal and drawing on the latest international research findings, Barry offers a conceptual framework from which to analyse the phenomenon of depression and suicide in men. Based on sound epidemiological data the framework provides direction for the development of targeted and effective evidence-based strategies and programmes.  An essential element of this framework is a critique of the underling assumptions that currently inform our understanding of suicide and whether these reflect the lived reality of men in 2019. It calls for a paradigmatic change with a greater emphasis on inviting men on a wellness journey from depression and despair to being well men. to enhancing men’s wellbeing and promoting strength-based strategies that assist men to navigate through times of distress and crisis.  Barry also offers his personal insights as a man who has lived with depression for many years.

This workshop draws on sociology and gender studies to broaden our understanding of suicide in men. It will examine how men's wellbeing has been impacted by the rapid changes over the past 50 years in society’s expectations of men and their traditional roles as well as the notions of masculinity as well as contributed to the rise in suicide. For example, the stereotypical notion of the staunch man who is strong, resilient and self-sufficient is a much greater impediment to men seeking help than is the stigma of mental illness or suicide. Social and cultural factors such as gender, ethnicity, age and sexuality, social and economic disparities, colonisation and intergenerational trauma are just as critical as psychological factors in assessing risk in men.

  • Explore how social, cultural and psychological factors contribute to depression and suicide in men
  • Update your knowledge about strategies that have been shown to be effective in improving the wellbeing of men
  • Understand more how men make sense and deal with their depression or suicidality
  • Enhance your skills to support a depressed or suicidal man
  • Identitfy opportunities for local community action to respond to depression and suicide in men
  • Understand how inter-generational suicide of other males within whānau and social networks are contributing to current suicide rates. 
  • Learn of approaches that assist men to navigate through times of distress and suicidal crisis.

Topics covered:

  • Overview of depression and anxiety and suicide in men
  • The phenomenon of suicide and the theoretical assumptions that underpin our understanding of why men kill themselves
  • The Suicidal Moment - Men's thoughts, emotions and behaviour in the "suicidal moment”
  • Data informed prevention: Identifying the trends and the most at risk male populations across all age and cultural groupings to ensure better targeted prevention activities. 
  • Masculinity for the 21st Century - Are traditional notions of masculinity meeting the needs of men in 2019 and how the changes in men’s roles and identity contribute to the persistently high rates of depression and suicide  in men
  • Explanations of why we are now seeing within whānau and hapū intergenerational suicide among the men
  • A vision for men’s wellbeing: An holistic approach to conceptualising men’s wellbeing and key mental wellbeing messages for men

Feedback from previous participants

"The best and most informative workshop I have attended in 27 years of mental health nursing”
Community Mental Health Nurse

"This workshop should be compulsory for anyone working with men”
Male Family Violence Worker

"It was as if Barry was talking about every young man I see at school”
School Counsellor

"I have lots more insights about depressed and suicidal men and gained some useful ideas of how work with the men in my community”
Community Worker

"Thanks for being so inclusive of older men. They are so often forgotten”
Aged Care Worker

"I appreciated how inclusive the presenter was of different cultures and his analysis of how culture influences what it means to be a man”
Refugee Health Worker

"Most helpful workshop I have been to in regards to suicide”
Program Facilitator, Mental Health Recovery Service

Target Audience

This workshop is suitable for clinical and non-clinical workers. Research shows that the workers in non-health setting are more likely to be wellbeing champions and/ or engage with depressed and suicidal men. For this reason, having 'first point of call' workers who are knowledgeable about men's wellbeing and confident and competent in responding to the distressed or suicidal male has proven highly effective. Workers from a wide range of sectors are encouraged to attend.

An opportunity for a day of learning with award winning suicidologist, Barry Taylor

Barry is an award winning suicide prevention practitioner with proven leadership over 31 years at local, national and international levels including leadership of New Zealand’s first national response to youth suicide in the late 1980s.

Barry has lectured and mentored programmes, both nationally and internationally, and been appointed to numerous government advisory committees on mental wellbeing and suicide prevention.

In 2016 he was awarded the NSW Mental Health Commissioner's Community Champion Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to mental wellbeing and suicide prevention.

As a health sociologist Barry has a long-term interest in the social and cultural determinants of wellbeing, especially the role of gender. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in working with depressed and suicidal men and leading initiatives for optimising men’s wellbeing. He is founder of the Men’s Wellbeing Aotearoa Coalition which is being launched in July 2019.

After a number of years overseas, Barry has returned to New Zealand both determined and passionate about making a contribution to promoting men's wellbeing and to building the knowledge base, competence and capability within our country to effectively respond to the unacceptably high rates of male depression and suicide.