On this International Men's Day, we're raising awareness on how to spot the signs that a friend or family member may be struggling and what you can do to help.
The facts about men and their relationship with their own mental health is deeply troubling. According to mentalhealth.org.uk:
- Three times as many men as women die by suicide.
- Men aged 40-49 have the highest suicide rates in the UK.
- Men are less likely to access psychological therapies than women: only 36% of referrals to NHS talking therapies are for men.
Further to this, ONS and IGPP report that more than two construction workers take their own life every day.
In 'tough guy' male-dominated industries, workers with mental health issues often are overlooked or fail to seek help due to the pervasive stigma that dominates these workplaces.
This International Men's Day, if you're worried that someone you know may be thinking about suicide, it's important to get them talking. Just listening to what they have to say, offering support and taking it seriously can be very helpful. You don't need to be able to solve their problems, you just need to listen and guide them to seek professional help if you can.
Simply knowing and being aware some of the common warning signs allows you to recognise when someone may be struggling and then taking the appropriate steps to reach out to them and make sure that they're okay and for them to know that they are not alone.
And if you need support yourself, we've listed free confidential support services here:
Be a mate and be the change.