November Mens Mental Health Month

November Mens Mental Health Month
Written By: Counselling Psychologist
M.Sc. Psychology - Swansea University, UK.
Reviewed By: Counselling Psychologist
MA Psychology Pennsylvania State University, USA
Last Updated: 28-03-2023

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Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold he is only sad” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

There is still a clear gap between men and mental health, despite the significant changes in the open debate about mental health over the previous ten years. The issue extends far beyond the myth that men are unable to communicate their emotions; stigma, masculine norms, and societal issues all have a significant effect on how men view, address, and care for their mental health.

More than six million people experience depression annually. The sixth most common cause of death for men right now is suicide.

Speaking about mental health is taboo in South Asian culture. Because their society disapproves of gender diversity and views masculine fragility as unmanly, men are expected to be stoic. Rules that define how men should behave are one of the greatest obstacles to obtaining help and prohibiting men from discussing their mental health in public.

Theoretically, discussing one s mental health with others should be comparable to discussing a broken bone or any other physical illness, but stigma prevents many men from doing so. The stigma surrounding mental illness hinders males from talking about it with their loved ones, which also prevents them from coping with it or seeking help. Several stigmas, including societal, cultural, professional, and, to a large extent, self-stigma, have an impact on how men see mental health.

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The reinforcement of male norms in our culture and society is another challenge for men dealing with mental health concerns. Masculine norms are the social codes and conduct expected of males and manhood in a certain culture. The notion that males are not expected to display sadness, grief, or pain and that doing so is the ultimate evidence of weakness or femininity is fostered by the expressions "man up," "toughen up," and "boys don t cry," among others. Because of the expectations placed on males to be "masculine," many men put off getting professional care for their mental health.

Similar symptoms and mental health issues affect men and women. They may experience depression, anxiety, panic attacks, and eating disorders. Men and women normally experience emotions in the same ways, but they handle them in different ways. Men tend to try to deny there is a problem for a longer period of time than women.

Men usually express their emotions by body language, such as physical gestures, changes in expression, tensed muscles, and gritting their teeth, as opposed to verbally expressing them.

The majority of males would rather find solutions to problems than talk about their feelings; they would rather find a solution first and then talk about how they got there. After resolving a problem, men often have more time to process their emotions, giving them the necessary time to think before responding.

When emotions are less complex than when they are complex, men can recognize them more rapidly. Anger over the trash not being picked up is a simpler emotion than grieving the loss of a close friend or family member, which is more challenging.

Men frequently convert stereotypically feminine feelings like sorrow or vulnerability into feelings like wrath or pride that are more acceptable in society.

Men s mental health concerns can develop for a variety of reasons, including:


Men with worse mental health may be more inclined to fiercely adhere to stereotypically masculine norms.


This might involve really upsetting experiences like being sexually molested, going through combat, or frequently being in stressful situations (e.g., firefighters or policemen). For instance, post-traumatic stress disorder develops in 65% of men who are sexually assaulted (PTSD). Being in a war or seeing a violent event can also raise the risk of developing anxiety disorders like PTSD.

Poor working circumstances or a heavy workload:

have been linked to an increased risk of mental health problems in men, as have work stress and a lack of social support.

Traditional gender roles:

These may include pressure to provide for others or social conventions that prevent males from discussing their feelings.

Abuse in childhood or problems in the home:

Any negative event in childhood increases the chance of mental health problems as an adult.

Work loss:

Men who lose their jobs or retire have a higher chance of developing depression. Depression affects one in seven males who lose their jobs.

Divorce and separation:

Men frequently believe that they should be the family s provider and peacemaker. Men who have been divorced tend to have more severe and persistent depression.

Financial concerns:

Economic concerns are a leading source of stress for many people and may contribute to the emergence of some mental health conditions.

Substance abuse:

Although such "self-medication" can ultimately make things worse, men may be more likely to use drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism for mental health concerns.

Advantages of Opting for Therapy

Treatment can have a variety of significant advantages, including:

  • Assisting you in understanding your problem.

  • Symptom reduction and quality of life enhancement.

  • Allowing you to set and meet specific wellness objectives.

  • Strengthening your ability to handle stress.

  • Assisting in building your relationships with friends and family.

  • Reducing or stopping harmful or negative behaviors, such as excessive eating or spending.

Your mental health might benefit from improving your physical health as well. Aerobic exercise has been demonstrated to improve sleep, boost mood and self-esteem, lessen social isolation (when done in a group environment), lessen stress and anxiety, and reduce sadness and anxiety.

Men who might not normally seek care are being reached out to using contemporary methods including web-based interventions and tele-health, online mental health tools. For depressive males who don t feel comfortable seeking out conventional mental health therapy, these methods may feel safer and easier to access.

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