If life is in danger
call 000


“I always talk about taking the first step. That's probably the hardest thing you can do is accept that you've actually got something wrong with you or acknowledging the fact that you need an out, you need a spell, but once you take that first step, things get a hell of a lot easier.” Brendan Cullen, Sheep Station owner in the Holding on to Hope Podcast.

Daily challenges, emotional distress and suicide can affect anyone regardless of their race, religion or gender. The challenges, pressures and stressors we face can impact on our physical, emotional and mental health and wellbeing and it can be helpful to receive support. For some men accessing services and seeking support can be a challenge in itself and a difficult first step to make.

Some signs that you may need support can include:

  • Physical symptoms, such as headaches, muscle aches and tension, weight loss or gain
  • Feeling angry or aggressive
  • Increased nervousness, agitation, restlessness or fidgeting
  • Increased use of alcohol or drugs or increased gambling
  • Feeling helpless or out of control
  • Losing interest in activities that you usually enjoy
  • Thoughts of harming yourself or others
  • Feeling hopeless, guilty or like a ‘failure’ or burden to others

If you, or someone you care for is in need of support, please call Lifeline to speak to a trained Crisis Supporter on 13 11 14 (24 hours / 7 days) or text Lifeline on 0477 13 11 14 (6pm, - midnight AEST, 7 nights).  We are here to listen.

Support services and resources


MensLine Australia is the national telephone and online support, information and referral service for men with family and relationship concerns. The service is available from anywhere in Australia and is staffed by professional counsellors, experienced in men’s issues.

Visit: MensLine
Call: 1300 78 99 78

Australian Men's Shed Association

The Australian Men’s Sheds Association recognises a Men’s Shed as any community-based, non-profit, non-commercial organisation that is accessible to all men and whose primary activity is the provision of a safe, friendly and healing environment where men are able to work on meaningful projects at their own pace in their own time in the company of other men. A major objective is to advance the well-being and health of their male members and to encourage social inclusion.

Visit: Australian Men's Shed Association

Every Man

Supports men who are at risk of homelessness, living with mental health issues like depression or anxiety, living with disabilities, men who are perpetrators or survivors of violence, men who are ex-prisoners, socially isolated, or having relationship or parenting difficulties. For over 20 years, Every Man has been working with men through tough times, using resources and specialist programs.

Visit: Every Man

Holding on to Hope - Brendan's Story

Everyone knows that rural depression is an issue. But few have considered the issues that cause it.

Farmer Brendan Cullen reached such a dark place he regularly sat in his car shouting at himself or on his bed sobbing.

Today, it’s hard to believe the cheerful sheep station manager from Broken Hill found himself in such pain until he lists the many factors that caused it  - isolation, being on duty 24/7, feeling reluctant to ask for help during drought, dealing with so much animal death he felt numb, constant pressure of new technology, being responsible for “the heartbeats of 10,000 sheep”, and burdening himself with unnecessary pressures.

Here he gifts us with his experience and the strategies he keeps in his 'tool kit' to keep mentally healthy.