International Men's Day

International Men’s Day: Bringing up the Tough Conversations

todayNovember 19, 2021 7

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By Allison Schroeder
Web Content Assistant Manager

International Men’s Day, a day to appreciate the men in our lives and recognize the battles and triumphs they’ve gone through to get to where they are today. This year’s topic is “Better Health for Men and Boys,” which aims to do exactly what the topic entails, embrace better health physically and mentally in the men and boys of our lives. No matter what age you are, you deserve better health.

In today’s world, there are accounts on social media that discuss mental health, but from the many I have seen they are mostly female-oriented in some way, shape or form. Mental health problems are not specific to one gender, but mental health problems in the male community often go undetected.

According to Mental Health America, “Men are less likely than women to seek help for depression, substance abuse and stressful life events.” They go on to add that men are less likely to seek help due to: reluctance to talk, social norms and downplaying symptoms.

KTSW Office and Traffic Manager Christian Villarreal talked about why he thinks men’s mental health is important to discuss and how he thinks mental health for men should be addressed.

Villarreal said “I think the first thing to do to address mental health, especially with men, is to make it more widely available to everyone because if you can’t get help from a therapist or psychologist, or stuff like that, then you have nowhere to go.”  

It is important for the men in our lives to seek out and go to healthcare professionals when they want or need someone to help. I believe men hold onto the stereotypes that are placed on them at a young age, that they grow up believing in these toxic traits.

For instance, being the breadwinner in a household or not being allowed to cry because it makes you look weak. These toxic stereotypes are reasons why men need to have more accessibility to healthcare professionals and we all need to start having these tough conversations with the men in our lives.

“Verbalizing and making the conversation about men’s mental health is important,” Villarreal said. “Not only do people not want to admit there is a problem, but they don’t know there’s a problem to be had with mental health with men. “

He continued to give what he believes are three steps on how he thinks men’s mental health should be addressed.  

“Bringing up the conversation is the first step, second step is getting access to healthcare, and the third step is [hoping to] be okay,” Villarreal said.

It’s not easy to just “be okay,” but once you start receiving the care you deserve and having the tough conversations that need to be had, hopefully you will start feeling better.

Texas State University offers counseling services to every student, and you can make an appointment Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 512-245-2208.

Featured Image by KTSW Multimedia

Written by: ktsw899

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