World Mental Health Day- Why men's and dad's health is important for everyone
It’s World Mental Health Day on the 10th of October 2022!
The theme of 2022's World Mental Health Day, is 'Make mental health and wellbeing for all a global priority'. Here at fatherli, we feel that men's mental health is important. We also draw on research shows that the role of positive men's mental health in that of families and children's protection from mental health difficulties is really important.
Why does men’s mental health matter?
Surprisingly, despite women suffering more from depression, men are 3 x more likely to commit suicide than women in the West.
Men are less likely to seek help than women and this means that a lot of men's mental health issues are undiagnosed.
Research finds that men are more likely to seek help for physical issues, and self medicate with alcohol than seek professional help for a mental health issue.
Men that are experiencing mental health issues such as depression, might become angry and irritable and judged for their aggression by their peers and family.
Without support, men might turn to drinking, alcohol and gambling and other "numbing" behaviours.
Why does father's mental health matter?
Father's mental health is really important after birth
It’s not often talked about but as many as 1 in 10 dads become depressed or anxious after birth (paternal perinatal depression).
Dads with good mental health can be a supportive co-parent to his partner and be there for children when mum or partner is struggling with their mental health
Father's positive mental health is important during childhood
Married or separated Dads with good mental health can be emotionally supportive and present to their kids which leads to children being resilient, and having good self image and self esteem. Research finds that if dads can ask for help, their children will ask for help when they need it if they have a difficulty and vice- versa.
How can we support men’s mental health? 7 ways
Peer support can be really helpful for guys to chat to other guys
Recognising that men might not want to engage in traditional talking therapies or men may want to address mental health issues privately and in their own way.
Listen without judgment
Do not judge men for expressing vulnerability and emotional pain.
End the stigma of seeking help for mental health
Provide coaching, counseling and spaces for men
Support dads with parenting and with relationship challenges