About me

I am a male in my 40s, living in England, divorced. I go by the name of “Frank Speaking” but obviously that is not my real name. I’ve had a lifetime of low self-esteem, low self-worth and other low-level mental health issues – I feel I had bouts of depression as a child but this was undiagnosed because my father chose to perceive it as “self pity”. In part, this fuelled the chronic low self-esteem that characterised my life until my marriage broke down in 2011 and brought everything to a head.

I had contemplated suicide on more than one occasion and in September 2012 I came within a hair’s breadth of ending it all. Ever on watch against The Crash and mindful that I may one day again need anti-depressants, it is an ongoing battle not to let my negative thought patterns get the better of me to the point where it stops me in the course of my life. I accept negative thoughts is a normal part of being human, there is nothing wrong with that but mine have stopped me doing things in the past and I now have the tools to fight against my most common negative thoughts when they do get out of hand. I expect to have bad days but will they ever be as bad again? This is part of the journey.

Some details will be altered to protect the guilty.

About this blog

My first blog – 30 something and breaking up – closed in April 2012. It chronicled the breakdown of my marriage but on that journey I went through a period of depression fuelled by not just low self-esteem but body dysmorphic disorder, sexual inadequacy and feeling unworthy of relationships. These things resurfaced and so began the process of dealing with some lifelong experiences that I thought were buried – it was the first step on the journey to recovery and rediscovering myself.

I started Chin Up, Chest High! to chronicle my recovery, self-discovery, divorce, dating and eventually finding love again (I have been in a relationship since December 2013). I changed the name to In the Mind of Men as I took a greater interest in male mental health issues generally, particularly as they pertained to my own life experiences. This is a place for men to come and talk about their mental health, to share their experiences. It is also a place for women to come to understand what goes on In the Mind of Men.

I do not tolerate man-bashing or woman-bashing. I am not an MRA but neither am I a male feminist. I have criticised both MRAs and feminists on this site and will continue to do so rationally and fairly. I am part of what I see as a rational middle (what The Amazing Atheist calls A “Universal Human Self Determinist”) trying to have intelligent conversations on gender issues, primarily from a male mental health perspective, without the mudslinging and one-upmanship of “my gender suffers worse”. No belief system will be ring-fenced here.

With that in mind, feminists may consider my site a “male safe space”. If you don’t think there is a need for such a place, then my blog is not for you. If you think your opinion should trump everybody else’s, then my blog is not for you. If you think that men do not suffer difficulty in life, then my blog is not for you.

With that in mind, welcome and happy reading!


18 thoughts on “About

  1. Congratulations on your accomplishments! Running was a key factor in my decision to take back my life, leave an unhealthy relationship, and take a year (2012) to work on me. I feel it helped me take back my personal power. I am just getting to where I feel I would like to start dating again. I’d love to hear from you about how, if it did, you feel running effected your process. Congrats again! =)

    1. Thank you! Your story of 2012 mirrors mine so much. I started running to work off some anxiety and frustration. After a while I saw the health benefits and continued to do for those reasons. It has given me focus, some confidence and a “carpe diem” attitude I thought I had long since lost, drummed out of me within the relationship I was in.

      You can catch up on my running journey by clicking here 🙂

  2. wow, you sound like a male version of me! I just started a blog about being 39 and single, I’d love it if you checked it out and followed me. Comment on my posts if you feel the urge 🙂

    1. Welcome! I should update my about page soon actually as I am not presently single – I’m in my first post-divorce relationship with a wonderful woman.

      I have followed you back in return!

  3. My marriage also ended in 2011 due to an affair. Adding insult to injury, my Ex married the woman he was cheating on me with. They quickly remarried and because my Ex is a contractor built a house together. It was pretty much an on going sh*tty thing from 2012 – 2013. Like you, I had to create a blog (myabandonedself) in order to cope with all the feelings/emotions I was having. Since my divorce, I haven’t been on one date because I feel I have much work to do.

    Anyway, your blog is inspiring. I am so glad I happened upon via Smooth Reentry via Free Northerner.

    1. Very sorry to hear that. I am now following your blog so look forward to sharing ideas with you. It’s right to start dating only when you feel ready and if you have other stuff to focus on first, then focus on you and getting stronger for you.

      1. Thank you for following me. Unfortunately, my blog isn’t as eloquent as yours. You’ll have to bear with me, despite my age (47) I have never been able to master my dyslexia and my writing clearly exhibits that. 😐

        I too look forward to sharing ideas with you. I am always open to the *Male Perspective* on things.

        In regards to dating: Meh. I’m just not feeling it. I don’t want to tie myself to anyone every again. I love my solitude and freedom. As my favorite actress Charlotte Rampling said, “Not getting married is my personal ode to freedom.”

        Besides, I want to make sure I never ever attract another person like my Ex. To that end, I am working on myself, focusing on those aspects of me that like to attract men who enjoy lying to me as m Ex wasn’t the first man in my life to lie, whether due to habitual reasons or pathological. Although, I tend to think my Ex is a pathological liar and covert narcissist. Just sayin’

        1. Don’t worry! It looks like an interesting blog and content is more important than style.

          In regards to dating: Meh. I’m just not feeling it.

          I didn’t for a while. It took about a year after I knew my marriage was over until I started dating again. Maybe you never will be. The point is not to force the issue until the time is right – if the right time arrives.

          1. It’s been 2 years for me, and I’m still not feeling it. I guess, if it’s meant to happen, it will happen. In the meantime, I’m going to continue working on my fixer-upper house.

            Thank you for your support tho.


  4. I discovered you through the BFMH 2015 site .. Like you, I have had a lifetime of low self-esteem, lack of confidence and self-worth, and depression. Oh yeah, I also have bipolar. .. I will check out more of your site. It’s nice to see other men blogging about mental health.

    1. Welcome to my little blog! Please do take a look at the blog highlights for some of the key issues I’ve already talked about.

  5. Been following you (and commenting on your posts) for some time CUCH but just thought i’d post here asI”m trying to get inspired to write again. Keep fighting the good fight!!!

    1. Haha, I notice you’ve been quiet as of late. But I guess you have an excuse now you have a little one to worry about.

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