June and November are popular months for supporting men’s mental health ― but the men in your life need you year-round.
We’re discussing mental health more now than we ever have before. People are becoming more open about their mental health, and we’re all learning better ways to support each other.
But people may often underreport men’s mental health, with men not reaching out for the support they need. And that’s where Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month comes in, bringing attention to men’s mental health.
For everything you need to know about Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month, from when it is to how to show your support, just keep reading.
But it’s worth remembering that not every country recognizes June as Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month.
For example, November is Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month in the United Kingdom. It’s also known as Movember, as men grow mustaches to raise awareness of men’s health conditions. These include mental health conditions but also conditions like prostate and testicular cancer.
What color ribbon do people use to support men’s mental health?
Some people use green ribbons to support men’s mental health each June, but you can wear them throughout the year.
If you’d like to support Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month, you could do it in many ways. You might hold an event to raise awareness and money for a mental health charity or organization. You could raise money through a garage sale or bake sale, get people to sponsor you in a race or a competition, or reach out to your workplace or your child’s school to see whether there’s anything they could do to raise awareness.
There are a lot of charities, organizations, and groups out there that do important work around men’s mental health and mental health more generally. Men’s mental health organizations in the United States and abroad include:
It’s also important to listen to the men in your life if they reach out to you and let them know that you’re there. Of course, this isn’t limited solely to Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month ― men’s mental health remains a big concern throughout the year, not just in June.
You’re not alone
If you’re living with mental health concerns, there are places you can turn to. Speak with a healthcare professional, trusted friend, or family member, or call or text 988 or chat at 988lifeline.org.
Alternatively, you can reach the Crisis Text Line by texting MHA to 741741, calling 1-800-985-5990, or texting “TalkWithUs” to 66746 at the SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline.
You can also learn more about finding the right therapist for you.
There’s still a stigma around men’s mental health, making it more difficult for men and boys to reach out for help. Some men might still feel as if people expect them to hide their emotions and “man up,” or be strong for others. Having or acknowledging a mental health condition is still seen as a sign of weakness or lack of masculinity among some men.
But mental health conditions aren’t signs of personal weakness ― they’re health conditions just like any other. You wouldn’t feel shame about getting a doctor’s help with a broken arm, and contacting a therapist isn’t any different.
The statistics of men’s mental health
Not only that, but the
And when men get help, it can sometimes be difficult for them to get the help they need. In the United States and worldwide, mental health care often
Intersectionality and men’s mental health
While a mental health condition can affect any man, sometimes, the conditions affect men disproportionately. For example, the CDC reports that LGBTQ+ men are
Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, or BIPOC, men are just as likely to have mental health conditions as white men but have less access to mental health care. They’re more likely to need to rely on community support in place of (rather than in addition to) mental health professionals.
You’ll notice that the language used to share stats and other data points is pretty binary, fluctuating between the use of “male” and “female” or “men” and “women.”
Although we typically avoid language like this, specificity is key when reporting on research participants and clinical findings.
Unfortunately, the studies and surveys referenced in this article didn’t report data on, or include, participants who were transgender, nonbinary, gender nonconforming, genderqueer, agender, or genderless.
While Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month is important, we must consider men’s mental health year-round. While it’s more acceptable for men to express their emotions and get help than it used to be, it’s still important that we address the ongoing stigma that men shouldn’t need mental health support.
Talk with the men in your lives, and if you’re experiencing depression, anxiety, anger, or other mental health difficulties, there are many places you can go to for support ― you’re not alone, and it doesn’t make you less of a man.