BREAKING THE SILENCE
Tackling Men’s Mental Health Stigma and Finding Support with AskNelson.
The subject of men’s mental health is one of the most difficult challenges facing society.
According to the South African Stress and Health (SASH) study, on average one in eight men will have depression and one in five will experience anxiety at some stage of their lives.
Depression in men is not different from that of women, but the signs are different. Mentalhealth.org.uk lists the most common symptoms of depression in men as “irritability, sudden anger, increased loss of control, risk-taking and aggression”.
Research also shows that many men still feel that it is “unmanly” to admit to weakness or vulnerability or even seek psychological help and using cultural spaces can help destigmatise mental health for men. Destigmatising men’s mental illness allows the harmful consequences of such oversight — including violence, substance abuse and suicide — to be addressed.
Therefore, the first step in addressing mental health issues is breaking down the stigma and improving access to services, such as our AskNelson counsellors who are available 24/7 and all conversations are confidential.