So, let’s get down to the nitty gritty. I have a condition called complex PTSD which is the result of sexual abuse I suffered at the age of 10 (there, I’ve said it).

I kept this hidden for 50 years and no other living soul knew of it. Anyone suffering similar problems will understand, you can’t face it and so you don’t. Apart from having extensive therapy from 2020 onwards, the daily flashbacks and nightly nightmares continue and I’m currently waiting to receive a relatively new type of therapy called EMDR (look it up). Fingers crossed it works!

Anyway, going to the Boston Men’s Shed has been huge in my journey of improvement. For the first time I have now met guys who perhaps don’t have my actual problems but none the less suffer with loneliness, depression, isolation, boredom and loss of self-worth.

I’m proof that the Men’s Sheds work – The mere fact I am writing this to you all proves that. We support each other on bad days, celebrate the good ones and talk openly; it’s OK not to be OK.

Once we eventually get bigger premises, we aim to have a quiet room where we can talk calmly about our issues and offer each other a shoulder to cry on if necessary. Although I’m obviously not academically qualified to help, there’s nothing like listening to someone who actually gets it, been there and has the t-shirts to prove it!

Sorry if it’s a bit long winded, but hey, “it’s good to talk!”

Thank you for reading. Stay breezy!

I’m a widower of seven years and in my 80’s and was lonely and bored living in my village, nothing going on and I had family problems.

At the Men’s Shed I have found a group of good friends who I can talk to about anything and passing on my experience as a qualified craftsman is very rewarding. They helped me with lifts to and from hospital when I had eye surgery. I have a new lease of life that keeps me active and engaged with a sense of purpose.

I am truly thankful to be part of this wonderful community. I have enjoyed greatly working on projects for various charities and have to that the Shed’s members for their support.

I live locally to the Men’s Shed and have mental health issues and basically, I feel lonely a lot of the time. I don’t have many friends, but since attending the Shed I have made new friends, who I can talk to and feel comfortable with.

Long live the Boston Men’s Shed!

Since my wife passed away, I found being lonely really awful. If it wasn’t for my daughters, I hate to imagine what would have happened to me.

One of my daughters discovered Boston Men’s Shed and suggested I give it a go. Since then, I have regained my confidence, made friends and found a purpose in life … and most importantly I no longer feel lonely or isolated.

As someone who suffers from severe mental health issues and who has attempted suicide, I can say without doubt that the Men’s Shed has helped me tremendously. I now have friends, who I can talk openly to, who understand me and give me much needed support.

Thank all of them for their courage for sharing their very intimate thoughts.

I arrived in Boston five years ago and not knowing anyone I joined the Men’s Shed, then Covid hit, and everything stopped. Later, I met a Shed member and so I went back to see it had all changed.

I have since made a lot of friends and no longer feel isolated or alone. Sharing skills and helping others is very satisfying.

The Boston Men’s Shed has given my Dad, a widower in his late 70s, a brand new lease of life.

As a qualified craftsman and trained teacher, Dad has been able to share his expertise and offer support to other Shed members as they have acquired and/or developed their skills in woodwork and craft design. They have already completed several projects benefitting different members of the local community, and I have no doubt that similar commissions will be coming their way in 2024.

My Dad has also taken on key responsibilities as part of the small team that forms the backbone of this local initiative. Being an active member of a volunteer association requires considerable time and commitment. But despite this, my Dad appears to thrive and he is also able to put some of his other skills to good use. Indeed, I believe this aspect of his role has given him a renewed sense of purpose.

Finally, and possibly most importantly, being a member of the Boston Men’s Shed has brought my Dad into contact with other men of a similar age and living in similar circumstances. Many of them have formed a strong bond and they support each other psychologically as well as on a practical level when necessary. New friendships have grown out of this experience and long may it continue.