Wellness event to provide safe zone for male students

‘Cracking the Guy Code’ will be held all day on Sept. 20 focusing on boys’ mental health.

The conversation about male mental health is one surrounded by the issue of masculinity and the idea that all boys have to do is  “man up.”

Thus, Diamond Bar High School peer counseling teacher and Wellness Center coordinator Sandy Davis has organized ‘Cracking the Guy Code’ in the hopes of breaking away from traditional gender roles and help comfort male students.

Davis said she has been planning the event for nearly three years and expressed her gratitude for being granted permission to go through with it.

“What I was finding was that our young adolescent men are more at risk than females,” she said.

The Sept. 20 event will have several games and activities related to topics discussed throughout the day.

The activities and group set-up will be similar to those at DB Forum.

The event will also have nine guest speakers of different ages, all of whom have studied and trained with Davis to help connect with the male audience.

“I did an eight-hour training with them,” she said. “The generational conversation they had was so rich and so valuable, I thought, ‘this is going  to be great for our young men.’”

Her idea behind the event is to allow males to feel safe expressing their thoughts on important issues.

“Nobody’s really talking to them about some of these issues,” she said. “They maybe hear about [the] Me Too [movement] and [ask] ‘What is that?’”

Davis also expressed the importance of keeping males who participate in the event as diverse as possible.

She encourages males who contribute to any part of DBHS to join the event.

“We want a really wide cross section, so we have representation from our whole school community,” she said.

She strives to help the male population at DBHS grow and understand their emotions through their experience at the event.

“Both females and males are impulsive, but the boys, when they make impulsive [and] bad decisions, they tend to be more destructive and harmful to themselves,” she said.

While Davis recognizes that many students at DBHS may feel uncomfortable with joining the event, she invites them to step out of their comfort zone and experience the event.

“We’re at a really interesting, critical time in our history where gender roles and norms and expectations are shifting,” she said.

Davis has also spoken to teachers, who will discuss the event in their classes.

She hopes for a positive response from students as well as from many of the participants.

“I think the young men, if we can get them there, will just be like ‘Oh my goodness this is really fun,’” Davis said.