Steve trailer - video transcript
[Caption] 'Made with +' presents a film by Ben Akers.
Ben sits on a park bench reading a letter written by his friend Steve, before his suicide.
Ben (reading Steve's letter):
I'm sorry to all my family. I've been suffering from anxiety and anger for a number of years.
I'm so sorry I ended up this way. Parents should never have to bury their children.
[Title card] Steve
As Ben tells us Steve's story, we see images of Steve during his younger years; happy, friendly and always smiling.
Steve Yates was my childhood best friend.
He was generous and funny. You just enjoyed being around him.
But on the 28th of May 2014, he took his own life.
Ben speaks to Steve's parents in their home.
Naturally I think of Steve everyday. Y'know... when [Manchester] United's on, I think of Steve. you know.
When they win, I think he'd be pleased today.
When I get up in the morning, I think about him.
If I'm not busy then I'm thinking about him. Yeah, and it breaks my heart.
He was one of 4,500 men who take their own lives in the UK every year.
Ben visits the offices of the charity CALM, the Campaign Against Living Miserably.
We refer to them as the 'holy-shit' numbers.
The single largest killer of men under-45.
One every two hours - 84 a week. 75% of suicides are male.
Ben speaks to a Movember fundraiser in a cafe.
Guys in their 20s have this really cool social connect, so that when they hit their 40s they're socially not connected. So they feel they can't ring anyone, they feel isolated.
'Steve' is a documentary about male mental health.
How many men are hiding their feelings? Don't know how to ask for help, and what they can do about it?
So for the past 6 months I've travelled the country talking to people about this epidemic.
Male interviewee 1:
There's almost a kind of a slight amount of resistance actually seeing that there's a problem.
Male interviewee 2:
I did the typical bloke thing, what all men do when they start suffering from mental health issues. I kept it to myself.
Male interviewee 3:
My experience is if you come from a working-class background, it's not deemed acceptable to talk about certain emotions and I didn't have the language to talk about certain emotions.
Dr Kate Wood:
I do get quite a few men saying "I'm only here because my wife told me to come".
But I am hopeful that things are changing.
This is a film of hope, to help men help themselves.
Male interviewee 4:
I wanted to empower someone else. I've got to change someone else's life.
Male interviewee 5:
The 'Andy Robert's coffee club' is our way to do it. I gotta do it for him.
Can't have other guys doing this. This is bullshit.
Female interviewee 1:
Whatever you think it is, it's not that bad and we can fix it.
But we need you to try to fix it as well.
Female interviewee 2:
On a plane when they tell you put on your own mask first before you put on your child's...
You've got to look after you, before you can look after other people.
No matter how bad things get, they will get better.