Man Up continues men’s mental health message with moving ad

26 October 2016

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Man Up continues its mission to break the silence around men's mental health with a powerful ad campaign that tells men it takes balls to cry.

The ABC kicked off a national conversation about Australian male suicide with its Man Up series and Triple M's Gus Worland will continue to share the message with an ad campaign.

The spot works to move past the outdated notions of masculinity that is killing Australian men. It aims to communicate with everyday men, encouraging them to talk and express themselves especially when they are feeling down.

The voiceover says: “Why do we tell boys to stop crying, to harden up, to grow a pair... F*ck that. If you feel down speak up, because silence can kill.”

Cummins&Partners global chief strategy officer Adam Ferrier says: “All little boys and girls cry, it’s necessary for survival. However, at some stage in their development many young guys learn it’s not ok to cry or express themselves. We wanted to reflect back the absurdity of this situation.”

Host creative director Adam Hunt adds: "There is nothing more powerful than men seeing other men cry – because it happens so rarely in media, advertising, and real life. Most blokes think they have to go behind closed doors before they can let out a tear. We wanted to ‘out crying’, and make it ok for guys to express themselves. The extreme close up, on a faded background aims to bring out the emotion of all the men involved – so you connect and feel what they feel.”

Man Up is encouraging people to share the ad, speak up and encourage others to speak up, and most importantly listen when they do. The ad joins the website to form a wider social campaign.

The three-part documentary series was funded by the Movember Foundation and University of Melbourne.

You can catch up on the series on iview now.


  • Adam Hunt, Advertising Person
  • Adam Ferrier, CSO, Cummins&Partners
  • Production: Heiress Films
  • The Movember Foundation
  • University of Melbourne
  • Director: Ben Lawrence

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