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A recent survey showed 40% of men have never spoken to anyone about their mental health. The results of this study also showed that it would take thoughts of suicide for these men to speak up about their mental health.
We know that mental health has a stigma that makes it hard to talk about. For men, this can often be even more difficult, with some men waiting until they have a real problem on their hands before reaching out.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Opening up allows you to move forwards, communicate with others and make small positive changes. Brushing poor mental health under the rug only makes it worse in the long run.
In this blog, we’ll look at how you can support the men in your life with their mental health. Because it’s up to all of us to look out for and support each other, you never know what someone else could be going through.
It isn’t always clear that someone is struggling. People can be very good at putting on a brave face—and they might not even be aware of it themselves. We can do our bit to support the men in our lives by looking out for the signs below that there might be a problem.
Taking the time to check in with people can make a big difference. Don’t be afraid to ask twice to see if someone is really doing okay if you get the inkling that something might be off. When they respond, take the time to be present and listen to what they say and how they say it.
Listen actively and have empathy for what they bring to the conversation. Try to ask questions if you can. Even just one small question can lead to a small revelation. It opens the floor and provides the opportunity for real communication, which can be a lifeline if someone is struggling.
Let the person know you are there to support them if they are struggling. You can do this in several ways, like calling out of the blue to say hello, arranging to meet or sending them a song they might enjoy. Often it’s the little gestures that go a long way.
If someone is having a hard time with their mental health, they might become withdrawn or down and not seem like their usual self. Try not to judge this, and be careful about the words you use. Having understanding and compassion is essential if you want to help create a positive change. Be open-minded and willing to see their perspective, and have patience— struggling with your mental health can be a tiresome time
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