I’d rather admit I like Justin Bieber

Obviously an extreme example, but apparently us blokes would rather own up to liking the irritating pint-sized pop prince than admitting we’re feeling down. We’d rather admit to being a bad driver, not liking football and having problems getting an erection.  All rather than opening up and saying, “I feel crap”. Are we stuck with some weird macho ideal, of ‘manning-up’, ‘zipping up the mansuit’ or ‘growing a pair’? Maybe the bravest thing is admitting things aren’t quite right…

This week (10 – 16 June) is Men’s Mental Health Week, and the Men’s Health Forum is challenging men to talk about feeling crap before acting on it. Men and women experience mental health problems in roughly equal numbers, yet men are much less likely to be diagnosed and treated for it.  The consequences can be fatal –3 in 4 suicides are by men and 73% of people who go missing are men.  In the UK, over 4500 men kill themselves each year and two-thirds of drink-related deaths are male. More men hang themselves than die on the roads.

Martin Tod, chief executive of the Men’s Health Forum, reckons: “If all men could talk about how they were feeling with confidence, I don’t think we’d be looking at horrific figures like these. Whatever the problem, your GP has heard it before. And these days there are telephone and online options too. Don’t bottle it up.”

For online information check out http://www.malehealth.co.uk/howRU

The best place to start though? Probably with your GP; not with JB.


Like the ad used to say, ‘it’s good to talk’…


A. Bloke Esq.