“Ava's been brilliant with saying, ‘Dad don't read it’. She’s so kind and considerate,” says the father of four.
“She's been able to teach me and coach me, which is amazing to have one of your kids do that for you. I think that generation, because they were brought up around it, probably are better at dealing with it some of us older cats are.”
It wasn’t until his mid-30s that Jock finally confronted his own poor mental health, but even then it took three OCD diagnoses before he actually believed he had the condition.
“There's this stigma around it, because in years going by if somebody said that you had a disorder, that you had OCD, there was this stigma that you were cooked,” he says.
That stigma is especially strong among men, who Jock says have historically “ripped the s—t out of each other” for speaking openly about their emotions or struggles.
He suffered from that culture of silence as much as any man, especially in the years before he sought mental health support.
“It became this thing that destroyed a lot of parts of my life … I carry a lot of shame about some of the stuff that I did and relationship breakdowns, marriages, friendships,” he admits.
But with a young son of his own, Jock wants to break the pattern that leaves men suffering in silence and contributes to the devastating male suicide rates in Australia.
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That’s why he’s supporting Movember for The Push-Up Challenge, which tasks people with completing 3,139 push-ups in June to raise awareness about mental health and suicide.
Why so many? “That’s how many lives were lost to suicide in 2020, and three in four of them were blokes.
“There are so many lives lost when they're just too young and it's unnecessary. And I think it's just because people don't know that it's normal. It's okay to not be okay,” Jock adds.
Though he didn’t like the idea of completing 130 push ups a day for a month (he did the math), the challenge has had its upsides.
“Alfie was sitting on my back the other day when I was doing push-ups,” he laughs of his son.
“I was like, ‘Buddy, this is hard enough. I know you're only four and a half, you're not that big, but I don't need anyone to make this any harder than it already is!’”
It’s that community aspect and being able to laugh at himself that helps Jock’s own mental health, but he also recognises that sometimes even a huge public challenge like this isn’t enough to get men to open up.
For the thousands of Australian men battling the same demons he once did, and some he still does, Jock has just one thing to say: “Send me a message.
“We get thousands of messages every day from people and we direct them to a number of different places where they can get help in a way that is relatable to them,” he says.
“And sometimes that's all it takes; talking to somebody, whether it's a mate, a professional or somebody you don't know.”
Admitting that it’s often easier to open up to a stranger, Jock is willing to listen to anyone – man or woman – who needs help, just like he once did.
Funds donated to Movember through The Push-Up Challenge will help deliver life-saving men’s mental health and suicide prevention tools and programs across Australia - visit the website for more information. For more details on the challenge and to register, visit this site.
If you or someone you know has been affected by any of the issues raised in this article, help is always available. Call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit their website.