Man sits in barber chair for Movember
Jonathan ForbesImage by: Movember
Man sits in barber chair for Movember
23 November 2021

Why I Mo: Jonathan Forbes

2 minutes read time

“We were rushing to a domestic fire. It was a particularly warm evening, so we had all the windows down in the fire engine. Somebody was walking past and decided to throw a beer bottle at the truck. As the windows were down, the bottle hit me directly and basically shattered on my face. I was knocked out cold and woke up to my crew dragging me out of the truck while holding my hands down because I was half-conscious and trying to pull the glass pieces out of my face.

"I was only 23, still very new at the fire brigade and I was obviously not prepared to deal with something like this. The police caught the guy and eventually they worked out a suspended sentence. No jail time served made it all harder to deal with. I was out of work for about six months and after many plastic surgeries and counselling sessions, I was diagnosed with PTSD.

"When I first heard of Movember, it was only in its infancy. I was still trying to work through my PTSD and because of that I developed some addiction problems trying to deal with them alone. I was still part of the ‘men deal with their own problems’ era. In the fire station, some talked about their problems, and some didn’t.

"I soon realised that I wouldn’t be able to deal with mine alone. I also knew that civilian councillors would not be able to help. I felt the need for a charity or a place that promotes men’s mental health and a place that promotes ways that men can open up about their problems to men with similar experiences.

"And this is why Movember means so much to me and fire stations all over the world and this is why we support them with whatever we can.” - Johnathan Forbes (Dublin)