Being Male/ Man
About Daanish Hambali
My name is Daanish and at 16, I was sexually assaulted by a man and what happened was the start of my downward spiral in life.
I became a drug abuser, and this phase of my life lasted for 12 years. Drugs became an escape for me. I used drugs to feel as normal as possible, but it only brought more problems in my life. I have managed to stop doing drugs after countless appointments with my psychiatrist, but the road to recovery is still a long road. Currently, I am on medically-approved drugs to help me manage my mental health issues.
Recently, I decided to be an advocate of mental issues in men. In our society, mental health is looked upon lightly, and mental health in men is shamed upon. Asian communities see men as strong beings who are devoid of any emotions, but that’s not the truth. Looking back, I feel this whole prejudice of how men should be is the reason why my life was destroyed. I needed help badly, but I couldn’t get any because I was repeatedly told off. This stigma also made me feel that maybe, I was the problem, that I was a failure because I couldn’t be what the “norm” is.
The truth is, much like women, men too have the right to feel every possible emotion, and these emotions can affect their mental health. Men should be able to seek help for mental health without feeling embarrassed, and I hope to provide that platform for these men to seek help without the fear of being judged.