I’d like to talk about men’s mental health. This is something that is often glossed over but thankfully we are making moves and talking more. January is often billed as the most depressing month of the year, there is a massive high through December being party season. Lots of celebrations happen over December, we have Christmas parties, work parties, Christmas itself and of course New Year. Unfortunately what goes up must come down.
I have always been very open about my troubles and sufferings and I continue to do so to help others in opening up. I started suffering in my early 20s; at this point, most men wouldn’t open up. What is the reason for this most will ask? A young man felt the need to put on a strong front, being the man of the house, the protector and the breadwinner. We felt that we had to put on a show and that we weren’t allowed to show weakness.
This attitude starts our demise into negative thinking. What if I can’t protect my loved ones? What if I can’t support my family? We live this nightmare and so the cup starts filling. An analogy that I often use when talking about mental health is that our minds are empty cups with a slow dripping tap above them, each drop is a negative thought, an anxiety or a situation and so it starts to fill.
With each drop the cup fills and gets closer to the top it fills and it fills and like any cup, it will overflow. What happens at this point? All of these problems, negative thoughts and anxieties spill out. For most this will be too much to handle and the mind can’t control the overflow, this can cause a mental breakdown for many. We believe that this is the end. We believe that we can’t go on. We have no idea what to do.
Some feel like there's
nowhere to go
The saddest thing is that at this point some will believe that they have nowhere to go, no one to talk to and talk themselves into believing that they are a burden and its best to remove the burden from the world. Many follow through. In 2022 the male/female divide on suicide is higher in men; The Samaritan's figures show that 78% of suicides were men. Yes, 78%. Let that sink in for a little bit.
communication is key, talking about how we feel inside is a great first step on the road to positivity
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