For many years now, thankfully, mental health has been on the public, political, and personal agenda. There’s nothing more exciting to me to know that men’s health has become a priority in our community. Somehow it doesn’t seem as natural or maybe even acceptable in some circles for men to share their feelings or to talk about their problems. And yet, the stats are not good for men.
The Movember website (1) reports that despite 70% of men say they are available for their mates, only 48% actually will rely on friends for help themselves. According to the The Black Dog Institute (2), compared to women, men are more at risk of suicide but less likely to ask for help or report a mood disorder.
I have boys and it’s been paramount for my husband and I to encourage them to share how they feel with us, their friends, and significant others. Unfortunately, as a family, we have experienced the tragic suicide and deaths of close male friends at too young an age. So, this topic, is very close to our hearts.
My younger son and his cricket club are bringing awareness to the local community by raising funds in support of men’s physical and mental health during Movember. I have jumped on board. My son wrote and posted the following. I could not have said it any better so here it is.
“Not usually one for a serious post but I believe this is an extremely important and relevant issue to everyone.
This year the North Eltham Wanderers cricket club are participating in Movember to improve the overall face of men’s mental health in our community. Over the past few years, myself as well as the club have prioritised mental health as one of our main cultural values and i can’t stress enough the importance of it.
We’ve all heard about the prevalence of mental illness in our society and we all know the impact it can have on a community. So this year, we are trying to make a difference by promoting the simple fact that it’s okay to not be okay. Within your families, friendships groups, or sporting clubs we should all make an effort to encourage a judgment free, safe environment where not only men but anyone suffering with problems feels as if they can comfortably share them. For me, talking about my problems out loud is the absolute best way to deal with them. Multiple brains working to fix a problem is far more efficient than one. No one is above problems in life, we are only human at the end of the day.
‘Grow a mo, save a bro’.”
Donations are welcomed. There is a pink piggy bank in the office on reception for loose change. Or you can donate directly to the club
If you or anyone you know feel seriously depressed, anxious, or suicidal please contact lifeline in the first instance 13 11 14. If you want to create meaning in your life, contact Dr Marie Anderson on 0411 319 990.
Movember Website https://au.movember.com
The Black Dog Institute, Facts & Figures about Mental Health. Retrieved from https://www.blackdoginstitute.org.au/docs/default-source/factsheets/facts_figures.pdf?sfvrsn=8