For Men’s Mental Health Week, we spoke with Nic Brown the CEO of Batyr, an organisation that aims to break the stigma surrounding mental health.
Societal conditioning may have led us to believe things that are harmful to men; men shouldn't cry, they’re not as emotional etc. What are the consequences of this on one’s mental health?
The people that believe that obviously haven't seen ‘
The Notebook' - that's a real tear jerker! It is true though that for a lot of us it's pretty normal to have been told to 'toughen up' or that we just have to push through. However, emotions are a normal part of life and often aren't something we can control. Feelings of happiness, sadness, anger etc. are all normal things we should be experiencing. However, experiencing some of these all of the time or for an extended period of time is when we need to do something, as not dealing with it can lead to serious consequences. 70% of suicides are by men so we need to get better at reaching out for help. We also need to be reaching out to those around us and letting them know that it's okay to be feeling whatever they're feeling, whether that means crying or not.
This view on masculinity not only affects individuals but the community as a whole. What other consequences might we see from these beliefs?
Have you ever struggled with a mental illness? If so, would you mind sharing how you personally overcame it?
How can we encourage more men to open up and not be afraid to seek help?
What change does Batyr hope to make?
We want all young people to have positive conversations about mental health and to feel empowered to reach out for support when they need it. When it comes to mental health issues, we're getting a lot better at understanding how to be there for those that need us. However, I think that we still have work to do when it comes to feeling comfortable enough to reach out ourselves when we need it.
Nic Brown, CEO of Batyr - @batyraus
If you or someone you know requires urgent help, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
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