Social Connectedness

Blokes are loyal when it comes to friendships; most have mates from when they were young through common interests like sport or music. But as they get older and those interests wane or take a backseat to family priorities, many of these friendships start to fall away.

The Movember Foundation and Beyond Blue recognised this issue and commissioned a study to understand the effect men’s social connections have on their wellbeing.

They found that social connectedness is a definite factor in helping men avoid depression. But they also discovered that a lack of social support is associated with many of the issues men face – depression, suicide, violence and substance abuse.

Shed 4 Men, Temora, Men's Shed, Gus Worland, Man Up, ABC

Simply put, blokes who still have a bunch of mates often don’t get the support they need when they’re doing it tough. Half of men say they rarely talk about personal stuff with their friends, because they’re not sure they can trust them with their emotions and they fear breaking their stoic image.

And yet 70% of men think their friends can rely on them for support. So why aren’t blokes saying anything to each other when they’re feeling down? And what can they do if they suspect their mate is feeling down and out?