UFC’s Paddy Pimblett Is Encouraging Men to Speak Up About Mental Health
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Paddy “The Baddie” Pimblett just beat Jordan Leavitt at UFC London—his third consecutive UFC win—and he took the moment to share an important message. Immediately following his victory in the octagon, Pimblett revealed that his fight took place just one day after he lost a friend to suicide, and spoke out against the stigma which prevents men from seeking help.
“I woke up on Friday morning at four a.m. to a message that one of my friends back home had killed himself,” he said. “This is five hours before my weigh-in. So Ricky, lad, that’s for you… There’s a stigma in this world that men can’t talk. Listen, if you’re a man and you’ve got weight on your shoulders, and you think the only way you can solve it is by killing yourself, please speak to someone. Speak to anyone… I know I’d rather my mate cry on my shoulder than go to his funeral next week. So please, let’s get rid of this stigma, and men, start talking.”
In a post-fight interview with BT Sport, Pimblett reiterated his message, citing the sobering statistic that suicide is the biggest killer of men under 40 in the United Kingdom, and once again urging men to find help if they need it, telling them that doing so does not make them weak.
“You’re not weak, you’re stronger than anyone,” he said. “If you can go and talk to your mate and say lad, this is affecting me, you’re stronger than anyone, I don’t care what anyone says. People think bottling stuff up makes it better, I’ve been there… I eventually spoke to someone, and as soon as you speak to someone it’s like a weight’s off your shoulders.”
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