Empowering boys to embrace their emotions
How you helped Aidan find his voice.
Aidan had been bottling up his emotions for years. He thought that’s what boys were supposed to do. But you helped him find the strength to ask for help and finally express how he was feeling.
“I don’t know how to talk about this… Nobody talks to me about feelings.”
For years, 17-year-old Aidan had endured his mom’s physical abuse. His immense pain had spiraled into depression, and it was getting worse and worse.
But Aidan did what our society tells boys to do: Be strong. Toughen up. Put on a brave face. He had no idea how to put his suffering into words.
Can you imagine how he must have felt?
Aidan’s depression built until it became like a physical force. Some days, he could hardly get out of bed. He felt isolated. He felt muted. In a way, it was like he felt nothing at all.
One day, he noticed Kids Help Phone’s number on a candy bar wrapper. Later that night, he took the brave step of posting his problem on our former online forum, Ask Us Online.
Pretty soon, Aiden saw that a counsellor had responded to his post. Seeing that response made him feel validated in his pain and in deciding to speak up. In fact, the counsellor’s message was so caring and supportive that Aiden decided to call, so he could speak to a counsellor by phone. And it’s because of your kindness that someone was there to answer his call.
Expressing his emotions to a supportive, empathetic listener brought Aidan immense relief. The counsellor guided him to think about how he could connect with supportive people around him.
For the first time, Aidan felt energy and a spark of hope that things could be different – all thanks to you.
It takes real courage for boys to share their feelings and to seek help even when our society sometimes tells them not to. Will you make a gift today to help break down the stigma for other kids like Aidan?
* This is the true story of a young person. Their name and the identifying details of their story have been changed for anonymity and confidentiality.