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From Depressed Farmer to Cowboy Entertainer

Mark was a Strawberry farmer before he found a career with Magic Men Live in Sydney.

Mark Story: Yes I was definitely in a bad place, but when I started working with magic men as an entertainer on the w.e it help boast my confidence and just helped my overall head space. Sometimes Diversifying from farming and doing something as silly as male stripping it enough to break the pattern of life. Ive made some great friends too. Male strippers get a bad rep but I could not be happier.

“In the past, farmers worked with their families and a lot of travelling salesmen and bank managers visited the farms,” mark said.

“These days one machine does the whole job and everything is online, which has left farmers more isolated than ever.

“This isolation leads to blokes sitting on the tractors for 24 hours a day and all they do is think. if they’re having a tough year, a lot of these thoughts aren’t positive,” he said.

Mark says depression can be a real danger to farmers when they’re working, as it prevents the ability to concentrate and leads to unproductivity.

“You lose all motivation, you can’t concentrate on your work properly because your mind wanders off everywhere else, you get anxiety and everything that comes along with it,” he said.

“I busted my hand open with an angle grinder once, it exploded in my hand because I just wasn’t concentrating,” he said.

Mark says farmers who battle severe stress and depression are hard-pressed to see a way out because they’re proud people and can’t see themselves doing anything else.

Sadly, this can lead them to take their own lives.

“After I had my own experience with depression, I actually had a couple of friends who were farmers take their own lives. They struggled with the stress of their farms and marriage breakdowns,” he said.

This was a turning point for Mark; he knew he had to raise awareness of depression and suicide among males.