What price do men pay for not feeling?

It’s November again and that is traditionally the time to grow a tache. Yep, November becomes Movember! Movember is the word wide effort to raise money for men’s health issues, particularly prostate cancer. The campaign started out in Australia and has been running for the last seven years. It’s now a worldwide event. Prostate cancer kills one in ten men in the UK, one man dies every hour of every day. Terrible figures. What makes it uglier is that it is a cancer that can be dealt with if it’s caught early enough. The guidance is to have your prostate checked every year if you are a man over fifty. If you have a history of cancer in your family then you should move this forward to your forties. So why don’t men get checked out?

Women are so much more effective at tending to their emotions than us men. I guess this is a direct outcome of how we were reared. I’m certainly not blaming us for anything here. Men get the message from a young age that we have to be tough, not weep and think through problems whether we feel sad or not. The common image of our Father’s being tough and unfeeling would be another way of us learning about how not to be emotional. This is often backed up by women of the family who did not like to see boys become expressive so colluded with the negative message. Let’s not forget though that being resilient serves a useful purpose. Weeping and wailing anytime things get hard isn’t going to be a great approach either. Maybe go somewhere in the middle?.

So what does being emotionally limited cost us men? * We tend to get stuck when situations with high emotions come along. Many men either go to a numb place or we express ourselves using the emotion that we have learnt is safest i.e. anger. This can alienate us from our loved ones and get us into trouble with those around us.

* Men are rubbish at tending to ourselves and feeling what’s going on in our bodies. As a result we ignore pain and only go to the doctors when we can bare it no more, by which time it’s often too late. There is no finer example of this than prostate cancer. The early symptoms such as trouble urinating or going to the toilet more often are often ignored and then only seek medical help if we are really hurting. the cancer may well then have moved to the bones which causes fatality.

* We avoid talking to others about how we feel lest they think we are weak. Our difficulties mount up and we believe that the only way out is to kill ourselves. Men are four times more likely to commit suicide than women in the UK (figures from the office for national statistics). How can we put the situation right?

Making things better could well involve making use of a psychotherapist. It’s not right to presume that women counsellors will be more emotional than male counsellors, they are all diverse regardless of sex. That’s why you should check out a few and go with who you feel comfortable with.

Counselling in Manchester can help if you feel stressed. Get help by reading articles aboutmental health for men across the net.

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