3 Things to Do When Men are Faced with Mental Issues
Mental health and wellness has been long-standing issue in society. But it is only now that people are starting to properly understand and address this invisible adversary that has affected countless lives for generations. Masked by socio-cultural norms in many traditional countries, mental illness is often looked down upon and those afflicted by it are estranged from their own community.
This problem is magnified even more when it comes to males. Various researches and studies have cited that when it comes to mental health issues, men may suffer more than women. Over 970 million people around the world are affected by any mental problem or substance use disorder. While men and women are on equal footing when it comes to percentages, the number of men outweigh women when it comes to alcohol abuse and substance use. Because of the stigma that males who have mental issues ought to “man up”, they turn to alcohol and drugs to mask the issue. But there are better ways to avert this problem and it is important for men to understand what some of these are:
1. Shift the male mindset – the first step to addressing mental health issues with men is to shift mindsets, not only for the individual affected but also the community he belongs to. Imposing outdated gender roles prevent men from accepting help that they need. Men are just as vulnerable as females when it comes to mental issues.
2. Encourage support and counselling – Many mental health issues are often misunderstood or unknown. When undiagnosed, men often resort to alcoholism or substance abuse as a way to cope or mask this problem from their community. By allowing men to gain access to counseling or coaching without the judgment, they can receive the right care and support.
3. Foster positivity and growth – Mental disorders like anxiety and depression can be paralyzing for those that carry this. These are amplified when the environment they are in are mostly negative and uncaring. Building a safe space for men, through wellness groups or regular coaching sessions, can help them live better and fuller lives.