If you’re facing a health challenge, it’s important to know you’re not alone. At Healthy Male, we recently revealed a new section of our website for men to share their health journeys and inspire others.
Honest storytelling is a time-honoured way to convey important messages and lessons, and research shows that personal stories leave a stronger and longer-lasting impression than facts and figures1. We’re seeing how personal stories on COVID-19 are helping put numbers and statistics in context and providing people with ideas on how to cope with the challenge of lockdowns.
Detailing your experience can bring comfort to men and families around the world and demonstrate to other men that they’re not as alone as they may think. Sharing your story can help to challenge taboos and encourage other people to share their own stories, creating a cycle of knowledge where valuable insights, tips, and advice are available to everyone.
The stories collected on our website will cover everything from sexual and reproductive health conditions, like erectile dysfunction and testicular cancer, to fertility problems, mental health struggles and domestic challenges. You’ll see from these stories that these issues are more common than you may think.
Stories also help health professionals, like GPs and nurses, to better understand and engage with their patients. The importance of storytelling is embraced across the health industry, and the use of patient-based narratives is now an ingrained practice that aids in the improvement of treatments, communication, and care. In many safety-critical industries, stories relating to real-life experiences are used as tools to teach valuable lessons. According to Britain’s National Health Service, ‘Stories involving patients have become an established way for board members to focus discussions on quality and patient experience. Patient stories also speak strongly to frontline staff, who are often motivated most of all by their individual interactions with patients.’
Submitting a story is easy. You can include as much, or as little, detail as you like, and you can also post anonymously. After filling out and submitting a form with some basic information, we’ll be in contact with you for clarification. With your permission, we’ll then post the story on the Healthy Male website. We might also use quotes from your submission in our print and online publications.
We aim to gather a collection of first-hand experiences of Australian men facing sexual and reproductive health challenges. Stories can be light, instructive, or serious, but most importantly, the stories will be told by men in their own words. By sharing your experience, you can help us to get the message across that support is available and that people don’t need to face their health hurdles alone.