Show support for your father or the father figures in your life by acknowledging the importance of men’s mental health and protecting their well-being.Father’s Day is a time to make our fathers and father figures feel special and appreciated for their role as “dad” in our lives. This year, go beyond the typical Father’s Day gift and support dads everywhere by providing the gift of mental health and well-being.
The Idea of MasculinityThe CDC has reported that men are four times more likely than women to commit suicide, however, men’s mental health diagnoses – bipolar, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and more – are still going undiagnosed at an alarming rate compared to women. This phenomenon may be linked to the social concept of masculinity and how many in our society narrowly view how men should act. From television to what is taught in everyday life, most men are shown as strong, tough, and in charge. Rarely are men put in spaces they feel comfortable to express the full spectrum of human emotions, which builds difficulties and challenges in addressing mental health.
Signs of SufferingHere are some of the most common symptoms in men suffering from declining mental health.
- Depressed mood or constant irritability.
- Decreased interest in daily pleasures.
- Lack of concentration.
- Rise of negative or unrealistic feelings of guilt.
Give The Gift of Men’s HealthHere are things you can do to support or acknowledge Men’s Mental Health.
- Build an environment of open and honest communication.
- Have meaningful interactions and ask how the person you are speaking to is feeling.
- Encourage new social connections and new hobbies.
- Encourage exercising regularly.
- Eat clean and nourishing foods.
- Challenge negative behavior.
- Be informed on resources.
How to Get the Conversation StartedIf you see behavior in a loved one that is a cause for concern or alarming, it may be time to talk about their mental health. Speaking about mental health is never easy but highly encouraged. Here are six tips for an effective initial conversation regarding men’s mental health:
- Show concern or worry, even say these words.
- Remind him that he is loved.
- Remind him that you are always here to talk.
- Remember, the initial conversation may not be effective.
- When applying pressure, expect anger as a response.
- Do not become discouraged. Know that your talk helped.
Disclaimer: As a service to our readers, NW Indiana ER & Hospital and Nutex Health state no content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.