The event will be featuring Actor/Speark Lamman Rucker, The Potter’s House Dallas associate pastor Joel Tudman, former pro baller turned licensed therapist Jay Barnett and more.
“In an event like this, you get to hear someone normalize what you have been experiencing,” Barnett said. “That way you know that you are not alone. I wanted to give men the opportunity not only just to express their thoughts, but have a space to be able to unpack things they are having a difficult time verbalizing, because most of us weren’t given that as young boys.”
The event called ‘Just Heal, Bro’ was born from Barnett’s journaling. He said he wanted to create a safe space for men to get together and talk about their traumas, their fears and be vulnerable. Something Rucker said was invaluable.
“Just giving each other the opportunity to say that I am not OK. Even if I’m not OK right now, I’m not always OK,” Rucker said.
Echoed by the thoughts of Tudman.
“What Jay has done is allowed a group of men to come together and bleed together, which doesn’t normally happen outside of sport,” Tudman said.
In a virtual interview, they said it was important for them to be part of this event considering the newest statistics surfacing regarding Black men and their mental health.
- Suicide is the third leading cause of death in Black adolescents ages 15-19 and second leading cause of death in Black youth ages 10-14
- African American adults are 20% more likely to experience mental health issues than the rest of the population.
- Sixteen percent (4.8 million) of Black and African American people reported having a mental illness, and 22.4 percent of those (1.1 million people) reported a serious mental illness over the past year.
- Suicides amongst Black men have doubled in the past two years
- 95% of people of color will end therapy prematurely, usually after the first session, because of the cultural divide with the therapist.
‘Just Heal, Bro’ event on Thursday is a free event with registration.