November is Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month. Although mental health for everyone should be taken more seriously, this month, it is important to recognize and help anyone who identifies as a male or as a man who may be impacted by mental health problems.
Males don’t receive enough recognition for the immense pressures they are under, yet are constantly told: “just be a man” when things are difficult. Society has taught men to mask their emotions, yet men cry, men break down, men have anxiety and depression, men get abused, and yet, men are told this type of behavior from them is unacceptable. It’s not “unmanly” for men to struggle.
In fact, it is very manly for men to show their emotions. Sometimes all they need is to be supported and encouraged. Men need to know is OKAY to go to therapy, talk about their feelings, and should be allowed to be vulnerable, yet the stigma continues. Why hasn’t the stigma been broken yet? Why are we still forcing this idea that men need to hide their feelings? Why is mental health in general still stigmatized?
The statistics ARE the facts:
– 84 men a week take their own life.
– 75% of all suicides are male
– Men are less likely to get help
WE’RE ALMOST IN 2022 GOSH DAMN IT!
We are a community that needs to do better at allowing a safe space to allow men to feel like they are allowed to be vulnerable. There is help out there and the beginning stages begin with YOU! It begins with me too! It begins with all of us opening the doors and starting the conversation.
I provide men and anyone in general with this last takeaway from Johann Hari’s TED Talk: “ If you’re depressed. If you’re anxious. You’re not weak. You’re not crazy. You’re not in the main… a machine with broken parts. You’re a human being with unmet needs.”
Let’s end the stigma around men’s mental health together.