Cmon bois get help init
Hello there! I’m Aidan, I’ve been on The Mix for about FOUR YEARS (time flies...) I volunteer here now, but I started here when I didn’t think things could get worse so I might as well start talking about my cringe feelings and gag problems with strangers on the internet!
Helloo, my name is Liam. I joined The Mix in March 2020, just before the first lockdown. I joined The Mix mostly because I was worried about feeling lonely during quarantine but I stuck around because I met some of the coolest people on here (but also because we’re still in quarantine).
We’re a man (Liam) and a boy (Aidan) who understand that being fellas, we don’t want to talk about our problems. It’s just not cool init. If you’re a lad who’s lurking the Mix and thinking about whether to join or not (we’re all guilty of it!) you might be a bit put off that there aren’t many lads on here compared to the lasses (as nice as some of them are!). We understand the feeling of not wanting to be the odd ones out.
Fellas are important too, and we wanted to make this thread to tell you a few things:
You’re not any less of a fella for getting help, because WE’RE NOT
This community has been very nice to us lads, otherwise we wouldn’t still be here
If you’re not a fella, there’s a bit at the end just for you about how you can still help
Male mental health IS important
Male mental health IS important. Mental health is important no matter who you are! I don’t know how to word this tbh cos it’s like honking my own goose, being a male with mental health- so I’ll let the statistics speak for themselves:
3 in 4 suicides are male
6 in 7 rough sleepers are male
Only 1 in 3 referrals to NHS psychological therapies are male
A male visits their GP half as often as a female (Aidan hasn’t been in 4 years!)
A male is 2x more likely to become addicted to drugs than a female
Us lads are three times more likely to end our lives as them lasses, yet (or maybe, because) us lads are only half as likely to get help- mad, that!
Just a thought
This isn’t something unique to men at all- but do you treat your mental health the same as your physical health, and why not? Your mental health is just as, if not even more, important!
If you’d take a painkiller for a headache, would you take a self-care day for your stress?
If you’d take medication for a physical condition, would you take medication for a psychiatric condition?
If you’d go to the gym and exercise your body- would you go through a self-help workbook and exercise your mind?
If you’d talk to a doctor, would you talk to a counsellor?
If you would wait until things can't get any worse before you seek help for your mental health, would you wait until your final day to treat a deadly illness?
If you’d look after the rest of your body, why wouldn’t you look after your head too?
Our excuses (maybe yours too) and why they're BS
We've both gotten help... in the end. But we didn't half make a load of excuses to put it off first. Sometimes a reason is valid, and you'll know that when you try to pick it apart and it still sticks. But other times, an reason is unhelpful, untrue, and holds you back- and when it falls apart under level-headed logic, that's when it's an excuse.
Imagine what you could achieve without your excuses!
I don’t want to be a burden
Us lads don’t talk about our feelings
It’s not that bad, I can deal with it alone
It’ll make me look weak
I’m scared my friends will find out
I have more important things to deal with right now
I should just man up
I don’t know how to start the conversation
This communityIS BLOODY AMAZING
I have to pinch a bit from another thread here because I can't say it any better, and I think I may have written it anyway but I can't remember
The words we send one another have an impact.
Beyond doubt, some of those words have saved a life.
Oi you, yes you, how YOU can help
If you’re a lass, we’re not saying you have it easy, that your mental health is not valid, or isn’t difficult to deal with. Mental health is important for everyone, and it is difficult for everyone to reach out about.
If you look around The Mix and compare the amount of lads to lasses though, you can see that lads do just have it harder when it comes to speaking out about it. That doesn’t mean it’s not hard for you to talk about- everyone needs a hand with their mental health, but lads might need it a little bit more and here’s a picture that’ll hopefully show what we mean a lot better than our words can.
What you can do- as a community member- to help a lad out:
In chat, try not to ask if any men are in the room
This can make a fella feel like he doesn’t belong in chat, chat is there for *everyone* to use
Anyone in chat could be a fella, and you just don’t know it, so if there is something you are uncomfortable discussing in front of a lad it might be better to share outside of chat like any 1-2-1 services
Try not to make negative generalisations about all fellas
We understand some of you might have had a negative experience with a fella, and that is very valid and you deserve support for that too, but not every lad is like that
You wouldn’t like it if a fella said bad things about lasses because of his bad experience with one either, so let’s all leave our untrue biases and conditioned opinions about either gender behind us and be there to support each other
Start a conversation
It’s hard for everyone to reach out about mental health, but it can be harder for a lad sometimes
If you can, try to reach out to him first and see if it helps him open up. Don’t worry about saying the ‘wrong’ thing, he probably hasn’t got a clue about the ‘right’ thing to say in the first place either, and it could really help him!
How to help the bruvas out IRL
Reach out to them, normalise talking about feelings and ask how they’re really doing
Avoid saying things like ‘Man up’ or ‘Suck it up’ and try and validate their thoughts and feelings
When suffering with their mental health, it can be difficult for your pal to find the motivation to go out and do things- so if your friend turns down an invitation one time, ask him again next time anyway. It reminds him that he's not alone, that you’re there and that you care!
Remember to check in on your ‘happy’ friend, they may be hiding behind a mask of happiness
Show your appreciation, if you’re grateful for yer pal, make sure to tell them from time to time
Thank yous, and cute animal pics!Thank you for reading x ~Liam
What he said^, FANX ~Aidan
Cute animal pics!!