World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has collaborated with acclaimed poet and mental health practitioner Hussain Manawer ahead of World Mental Health Day.
The short film, entitled ‘You’re Not My Best Friend’ is a poem to help tackle the stigma that surrounds drug addiction and to raise awareness about World Mental Health Day.
This year, the male suicide rate has hit a two-decade high in England and Wales. Part of the stigma that exists around mental health for men is that men have greater difficulty talking about their struggles. However, one by one, men are coming forward and openly addressing their problems; boxers, actors and athletes have all come forward recently to encourage more to do the same.
Fury, the two-time heavyweight world champion and current lineal and WBC world champion, represented by MTK Global, Top Rank and Queensberry Promotions, has spoken openly and honestly about the impact lockdown has had on his mental health. After revealing his struggles with alcoholism and recreational drug use, Tyson staged an inspirational comeback in 2018, after three years out of the ring, to become world champion again beating Deontay Wilder at the MGM Grand in February of this year.
Fury said: “It’s incredibly important to speak up and fight the stigma of mental health. Boxers are the toughest of the tough but mental health affects each and every one of us differently. Working with Hussain and creating the short film reminds people that they are not alone – help is always there and it’s important we keep talking about it. This World Mental Health Day we need to redefine what it means to be a ‘strong man’.
Having set the Guinness World Record for the World’s largest Mental Health lesson, Hussain Manawer has been tirelessly using his platform to educate, engage and inspire young audiences all across the world with regards to starting the conversation on mental health. He has shared platforms with world renowned leaders including HRH Meghan Markle, President Justin Trudea and the late Kofi Annan.
Hussain said: “You’re Not My Best Friend is a poem to help change the conversation on mental health and encourage people to reach out and have a conversation. Fury’s mental health story and his return to boxing has been nothing short of incredible – he completed one of the greatest comebacks in sporting history – a true inspiration.”