This was a special episode as it was the very first time David and Volker had recorded an episode in the same room. But we also had four guests.
With us were Nathan and Gavin who run Talkclub in Haywards Heath. Talkclub is a about getting men together to talk and listen. This is an organisation that was set up (by another Gavin) after one of their friends committed suicide. Often, suicide can be prevented by simply talking. Of course, there are bigger issues and more underlying issues that play a role, but if men just store things up and don’t talk about their issues, then this isn’t helping their mental health at all.
We were also joined by Adam and Chris, two regular Talkclub members. Obviously, we don’t discuss any private issues they might normally discuss. Volker attended a session before, where he and others really opened up about things. However, our mission was to showcase how the session works, why Talkclub is beneficial and to remove a barrier of anyone attending any of the Talkclub sessions around the country.
If you don’t have Talkclub in your town, it’s easy to set up your own. You find all the information on the website www.talkclub.org – including a TED talk from one of the founders.
When the sessions happen, it is all about sharing how well you are feeling, between a zero and a ten. Volker reflected on how he opened up in front of some random blokes. Having a safe space where you can share anything good and bad that happened.
Chris and Adam were very kind to share their experience. They know each other well and are neighbours, and that’s not a problem. Also, they share things at the club rather than burdening their partners with problems they have, which means it can take pressure off a relationship.
Both Chris and Adam explained that the hardest step was pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and taking that step through the door. And while getting things of your chest is a form of therapy, Chris and Adam explained that they had become much more mindful and attentive listeners in all aspects of their lives.
Nathan explained that when the ‘universal group’ speaks about a big change, that’s when things usually change for men, and of course women as well. Whether that is the first child, or for all of us lockdown, which could be classified as a trauma for everyone if you wanted to see it that way. The uncertainty it created for everyone has a huge impact.
But it’s not about comparing oneself to others but to support each other. It’s not about trying to give advice to someone but just letting someone know that you have listened and “heard” what they are saying.
Talkclub is a place where you can find a community to talk and listen. You are part of it, but there is no competition or pecking order. It’s also free, whilst for a therapy session you have to pay. It’s about putting more tools in your toolbox to better cope with the everyday stress of life.
Please check out www.talkclub.org
If you are in the Haywards Heath area, please contact Nathan or Gavin via https://www.theunsaidspace.com/talkclub they meet on Wednesday nights.
Find all our episodes on Spotify or Apple podcast – just follow the links on this page.