“I joke because, sometimes, I don’t know what else to do. Of course, the stigma against men’s mental health is not funny. When you are told that it is not appropriate to talk about your feelings, when you have limits placed on what is okay and what isn’t okay to talk about, when you are expected, or when you expect yourself, to just shut up and deal with it, the consequences can be deadly.
According to data from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, for years, four times as many American males killed themselves than their female counterparts. In the Jewish faith, when you go to sit shiva with the family of the deceased, you are supposed to offer the greeting, “We suffer in silence.” It is indeed disturbing to think about how many men throughout this country and this world went to their self-inflicted deaths suffering in their own stifling, suffocating silence.”
It’s not OK to stay silent about this. Too many men, and women, for that matter, are losing their lives because they are unable to get help and support when they most need it. Suffering in silence is not what is needed, what is needed is the hope and support that comes from knowing that you are not alone, that others have been where you are and made it.
You can too.