International Men’s Day (Mental Health Spotlight)

This is dedicated to Lai and Eugene

Men’s mental health: such an unreasonably complex topic.

We benefit from people of all genders being able to share their feelings and experiences, it’s surprising that we don’t actively engage more proactively with men’s mental health. It’s a topic that has long been overlooked, but that must not be allowed to continue.

Men are people and deserve the right to mental healthcare, access to judgement-free therapy, and more options for treatment.

The top major mental health problems affecting men are: depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and eating disorders.

Since 2000, male s*icides have been on the rise, becoming the 7th leading cause of death among males. (Men are also more likely to succeed when an attempt is made.)

Risk factors for poor mental health include: socialization, substance abuse, unemployment, military trauma, genetic predisposition, and mood disorders. The risk of poor mental health has also increased during the recent pandemic and social distancing.

Men also may often go misdiagnosed, because they present with different symptoms. A woman may present talking about being down, or feeling worthless, when a man might appear merely irritable or in “a bad mood.” The woman would likely be correctly diagnosed with depression, where the man’s symptoms may be dismissed. (WebMD)

We need a reckoning as a society that it is, in fact chemical imbalances–something as physical as a heart attack– that causes many mental health issues. It is not something you can just “man up” about– similar to how you would not just “man up” through a heart attack. Let’s try to reduce the burden of toxic masculinity for our male friends and partners, because that burden is doing no good for any of us.

Please check out the resources below for further information, and if you or someone you know needs immediate help, please call the National S*icide Hotline at:

800-273-8255


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