The Importance of Words
Painting is a freedom which dances with the truth, but words require brutal honesty.
Together, art and poetry have become my textbook to understanding mental health:
My weapons of choice in defying the expectations of what "a man" truly is.
Despite the progress we have made, we still live in a world where mental health is deeply stigmatised.
for so long, My experience as a man had always been to suppress feelings and carry on, no matter what life threw at me. In doing so, I lost a sense of who I was.
A culture of toxic masculinity embedded in society cast a shadow on my sense of self.
I was stuck in what felt like an eternal void of misunderstood and unprocessed emotions.
After being plagued with constant suicidal thoughts and living through a severe mental breakdown in 2017, eventually leading me to therapy, I began a process of rehabilitation and found creative outlets that became a new form of medicine.
It was freeing to paint. yet writing seemed painful, despite how necessary it became to confront myself with words.
It is not easy to reopen old wounds, but this is where the healing starts.
We must lay our soul bare in the face of trauma and learn to quantify our emotional turbulences. I therefore share my forbidden words - poems forged from a heavy heart - in the hope of raising awareness about the importance of mental health and accepting male vulnerability.