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An Online Resource Library on Gender-Based Violence.

New Zealand: Barbershop movement urges abusive men to tackle traumatic pasts

Sunday, October 27, 2019

"She Is Not Your Rehab was started by men from Christchurch barbershop My Father's Barbers.

The barbershop is known as a place 'where men go to heal' and is now calling men to deal with their childhood pain and abuse, instead of projecting it onto their relationships.

Owner Matt Brown, an author, speaker and internationally-acclaimed barber, said his business had become a safe space where men could open up about the issues affecting them.

'This was a response to the men that sit in my chair and taking responsibility and healing ourselves, doing the work, whether it's getting help... talking to your friends or seeing a counsellor,' Mr Brown said.

His clients ranged from boys to elderly men and many had experienced violent upbringings or felt the wounds of going through 'the system and being in foster homes.'

'These children grow up to become adults who carry that pain and transmit it onto everyone else.'

In August, Mr Brown performed a haka with his friends and employees and gave a Tedtalk about his story of a violent and sexually-abusive upbringing.

He and his team wore T-shirts with the slogan 'She is not your rehab,' which is how the movement gained attention online.

Now thousands of their T-shirts are being sold globally.

'I never really thought my barbershop story that began in a garden shed in Aranui would be worthy of such a platform.

'This is a movement for whānau, because if men take responsibility for their own healing that will heal the whole family and if women take responsibility for their own healing and do not rescue men that will heal the whole family, because our kids are watching.'"

Read the full article here.