Help Seeking Behaviour
A huge barrier to help-seeking is the stigma attached to mental health. Many blokes are unwilling to have a conversation with a friend or family member for fear of being judged or appearing vulnerable or weak.
An excellent study that explores this is one commissioned by Beyond Blue. What they found is that the stigma around mental health issues usually only applies to the men themselves, men will often speak positively about friends who are dealing with depression.
So why the double standard?
There’s also confusion among men about what depression actually is and how serious it can be. Many blokes equate it with just feeling sad and think they’ll get over it in time, so no need to seek help.
But the study also found that if men open up to a mate, it’s much easier to move on to talking to a professional.
The Beyond Blue study emphasized to us how important it is to both understand and reframe the way we talk about depression and anxiety to get everyone more comfortable speaking up and seeking help.