Issues affecting men are often overlooked as men are thought to be tough creatures, that don’t cry or express their problems and emotions to friends and family. In my clinical practice, I repeatedly counsel men who are beat up from the false narrative in the media that they are heartless, lazy, selfish human beings who abandon their families and only think with the organ in their pants versus the one in their head.
Of course none of this is true at all. Most men want to lend a helping hand to the next generation of young boys to ensure they are raised to be respectful, hardworking men who protect and provide for their families. However, often they are so caught up trying to master life themselves that they forget to reach one and teach one.
In fact, some men who walk into my office and sit on my couch are so broken, tired of the constant politics and drama they face at work, or just yearning for some relief or encouragement at home. All they want is for their loved ones to say that they are on the right track so they can face another day. The 800lb gorilla that’s jumping on the backs of men is often invisible to the women in their life. What’s crazy is that most women can’t fathom that amount of weight because of the social supports made available to women to quickly shed that type of weight and stress.
Daily, I promote tips and strategies for young and old men alike to remain psychologically and emotionally healthy in the face of adversity both at life and at work. However, without healthy strategies to face life and good support systems, some men fall victim to poor coping strategies or vices from their youth. These include alcohol abuse, video game addiction, drug use, excessive sleeping and spending on toys or clothes to numb the sound of failure and regret that loudly echo in their mind.
Men are just as vulnerable to stress, heartache, depression and frustration, and we must not forget to shine a light on the plight of men. We should encourage men to talk when the weight of the world becomes unbearable.