For understandable reasons, men often have a harder time accessing therapy. The statistics tell a story. From internationalmensday.com:
- 76% of suicides are men
- 85% of homeless and unhoused folks are men
- 70% of homicide victims are men
- 40% of domestic abuse victims are men
- 49% of men say they're more depressed than they admit
It is TOUGH to be a man in the world. We tell men to open up, talk about things, but men are often punished whenever they DO ask for help or in any way show that they're not 100% in control at all times. Men are often painted as simplistic, uncomplicated, stoic creatures, but people are complex, and men, I hear tell, are also people.
More reasons it can be harder for men to get help:
Men often take on roles in families and their professional lives where they're the ones other people rely on. They might be first responders or military servicemen. They might be the earners, the caretakers of parents, children, and spouses. They might have other high-pressure jobs in STEM, law, or medicine. Geographic and social isolation plays a role, for example, people in farming communities which often bear their own internal and cultural stigmas about mental health.
Got me thinkin' though bout how many of us have been affected by suicide of our friends, family. Struggle and pain is real. We've all been there on some level or another…We all go thru the sludge/shit and depression never discriminates. Took me a long time to realize it but the key is to not be afraid to open up. Especially us dudes have a tendency to keep it in. You're not alone.
If you deal with physical symptoms like changes in sleep, energy, or appetite, frequent headaches, muscle spasms, or any other chronic, acute, or sudden aches and pains, they could be connected to mental health. Maybe that Advil you're popping would work better if you took it with a therapy chaser. Just a thought.
And sometimes, you just need a way to stitch YOURSELF up. Sometimes, that means someone's got to SHOW YOU how to stitch yourself up before you can do it yourself. Like Rambo. I give you the tools to do just that.
In active battle, if you break your legs, you don't have the luxury to get a cast when you're just trying to get out alive. So you make do with a splint as quickly as you can, and you keep moving. But once you get to safety, you need to correctly set the bone and get a cast. You can't keep hobbling along. You COULD, but you'll end up hurting yourself even more, and you're not really addressing what's wrong. Think of talking to a therapist as the cast and the ways you've been coping so far as the splint. You've come up with really creative and varied methods of getting through things. Otherwise, you wouldn't be here. But you deserve to do more than just hobble through life.
You want to be the best father, husband, community leader as you can be. You want to show up for others at your church or faith community. You want to be a role model.
Say whatever you need to say, however you need to say it. I will not judge you when you curse or use "colorful" language. The realer the better. Let's talk.