More people have been more open about having honest conversations about their mental health as the attitude towards this topic that people used to shy away from has changed in recent years. Men and their mental health became a part of this change as their mental health – an essential aspect of their lives – became a part of the conversations.
As the inclusion of men in the mental health conversations increases, there are more services catered to them. Nowadays, it’s common to see services ranging from psychiatric treatment to osteopathic care catering to men, and it’s a trend that everyone should get behind as men’s well-being is just as important.
Why Men’s Wellness Matters
Society expects men to show only their masculinity, and any form of them showing emotions and expressing their mental health concerns mean a deviation from that concept. These expectations are causing more men to repress their anger, fear, and other negative emotions. And when these emotions are swept under the rug and never dealt with, it will have undesirable repercussions, which is why physical and mental wellness for men is more important than ever.
Just a disclaimer: below are some trigger-inducing facts about men and their mental health. Here are some of the reasons why men being more open about their mental state is a step in the right direction:
- Suicidal thoughts in men are more common than in women.
Based on various studies, the rate of men who die by suicide is three times higher than women. As alarming as it sounds, conversations about this problem are a sensitive topic for many. Still, it’s important to be talked about, especially as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC have found that 84% of the men who killed themselves did not have mental health problems.
It’s already a given that mental health conditions are something that people generally don’t usually talk about. Men, in particular, also tend to hide any signs of their mental health not being in a good state, which is why people should be more encouraging for this trend to change.
- Counseling and therapy, for some men, aren’t necessary.
Statistically, men tend to ignore their need for therapy. Based on findings by Substance Abuses and Mental Health Services Administration or SAMHSA, if you compare the number of men and women seeking counseling and treatment for mental health-related concerns, the former is significantly lesser than the latter gender. This result is alarming since mental health problems do not choose genders. Fortunately, this will change as society’s perception of men’s mental health is changing.
- Dissatisfaction in life is more common in men compared to women.
In terms of different aspects of life like education and employment, men tend to have lower satisfaction levels than women, which causes their mental health and self-esteem to suffer. These problems are why midlife crises are also more common in men as they feel less satisfied with their careers. And not talking about these kinds of issues makes it worse for men.
The list of reasons why men should become more open about their mental health could be longer. It’s the same for the reasons why more people should become more open and accepting to men who seek help for their problems: it could go on.
Why Men Shy Away From Talking About Their Mental Health
As mentioned, the expectations and roles that society has imposed on genders play a significant role in why men tend to shy away from having proper conversations about their mental health and seek counseling and therapy if they have any problems. These stereotypes run deep in cultures and people’s perceptions that it has done more harm than good, and countless studies prove that.
Patriarchy is another concept and system that has significantly affected how men are expected to behave, which forces them to adhere to these expectations and social structures. Fortunately, as the world is progressing, more people are challenging the patriarchal society that has contributed to the mental health crisis in men. Nowadays, more people are normalizing the growing trend of men’s wellness for their physical and mental needs. Hopefully, the tides will turn soon.
It’s Okay Not To Be Okay
So, if you or anyone you know is suffering from any mental health problem, you should seek professional help for it. It doesn’t make you less of a man to know that you’re suffering and recognizing that getting counseling or treatment for it is the best option.