Supporting young men

MÄN works to promote gender equality and prevent violence among boys and young men. We listen to stories and questions that involve and impact their lives. We do this primarily through our digital support platform, which includes a chat feature, a therapy clinic and various forms of information and support for anyone who identifies as a boy or young man.

The chat feature launched in 2009, because the existing forms of support for young people had difficulty reaching young men. The idea is for it to be a low-threshold activity to make it as easy as possible for boys to get in touch. Boys and young men aged 10–20 years old can use the chat feature entirely anonymously and discuss any and all ideas, thoughts or questions. Common questions pertain to: bodies, sexuality, gender identity, violence, porn and relationships. The chat feature is run by volunteers who are trained by MÄN regarding interactions with young men and norms. Every year, they encounter between 6,000–9,000 people seeking support. gives boys and young men the courage to seek support and discuss their feelings, and fills an important function in reaching young men with psychosocial health issues and who talk about experiences with violence or sexualised violence.

Therapy clinic for young people who have used violence

MÄN also operates a therapy clinic for young men aged 15–25. The clinic is for young men who use or have used violence in close relationships, who have been subjected to violence themselves, who have recurring problems with jealousy, anger, boundaries and fights, or who feel they consume too much pornography. People seeking support are offered it in the form of conversations with psychologists or counsellors either in person at MÄN’s clinic in downtown Stockholm, or via video chat. The therapy initiative is based on an approach from the Response-Based Practice method, in which violence is always seen as a choice. The goal is for perpetrators of violence to change their perspective on their actions, and to make different, non-violent choices in the future.

Critical reflections on porn, sex and masculinity

In a specific project focusing on young men and porn, we raise ‘guy norms’ associated with pornography. We know that many boys and men look at porn, but less about the consequences. From our work, in which we encounter and talk with adolescent men, we also know there is a great need to talk about pornography. Many parents, other adults, decision-makers and professionals who encounter boys and young men also need knowledge and support in order to feel comfortable talking about issues related to porn and sex. Our work aims to explore girls’ and others’ experiences of pornography and its consequences and to facilitate more inclusive and reflective conversations on sex and porn and its consequences with the target group of young men aged 13–25 years old. We also want more guys to get involved through discussions with other guys about destructive masculinity norms, sex and porn.