There is a prevailing notion in society that men who have mental health issues are somehow weak. There is a stigma attached to men’s mental health issues. It often prevents people from seeking help or support. Across cultures, societies are built on the perceived notion that men must be strong, but they sadly fail to define in what sense.
Tens of millions of men are affected by mental health issues every year. But when it comes to reporting them or getting treatment, less than half of the afflicted men come forward. More often than not, it is because men feel inhibited by the expectations of society to be macho, invincible and strong. But it is time that men open up about mental health issues and be able to discuss them.
In this first article of the series “Time to talk about men’s mental health,” the existing stigma around such issues are examined and discussed.
The society perceives men to be macho. Further, instead of clearly defining machoism, media presents an unrealistic image of men and masculinity, which soon becomes the norm. That not only puts pressure on men, but gives the idea that having mental illnesses is a sign of weakness in men.
The projection of men’s masculine image leads to ignorance about their mental illnesses, such as depression, anxiety, etc. Millions of men are affected by these illnesses every year. Therefore, the idea of masculinity needs to be reexamined to accept the reality.
Many men feel ashamed of talking about depression and other mental illnesses since they think it is against the idea masculinity. Lots of psychiatrists say that men come to therapy only when someone close forces them to get treatment. This also has to do with the popular belief that men should never break down or give in to the pressures of life.
Men often seek medical help when their condition becomes worse and they are unable to live up to the masculine image. They find it too painful to keep their illness hidden and come for help when they are made to realize that the problem is too big.
Where does this leave men? It definitely does not help men remove the taboo on mental health. The society should take the responsibility for such images which eventually harms people and do away with the stigma altogether.
Mental health disorders cost billions of dollars in terms of missing workforce and missed days. Above all, thousands of men lose their lives due to mental health issues. Although it is more common among women, men also tend to have suicidal tendencies that arise due to mental illnesses.
Not only in the U.S. but across the world society must remove the barriers that stop men from seeking help for mental illnesses. Men themselves should also become aware that stigma stops them from addressing their own problems and should fight against them. That is where the change should begin.
If you feel that there is some mental health problem that is troubling you, seek help immediately. There is no point suffering from an illness when you can get treated in some of the best mental health treatment centers in Colorado. Mental illness is curable if proper medication and procedures are followed.
If you need help regarding any mental health issue, chat online with representatives at the Colorado Mental Health Help. You can find out about the best residential mental health treatment centers in Colorado that offer a holistic approach. Call our 24/7 helpline at 866-899-5063 to discuss your issues. It is better to be termed weak and get treated than being strong and let illness destroy your life.