If you are a man that has struggled with mental health in the past, you have most likely heard the phrase “man up.” You may hear this come from a friend, family member, coworker, or someone else in your life that isn’t comfortable seeing men be vulnerable. With all of the stigma surrounding mental health, a significant part of it is directed towards men. They are supposed to be strong, not show their feelings, absolutely no crying, and expected to get through problems on their own. However, these expectations can have negative effects on men’s mental health and worsen their current situation. When people use phrases like “man up,” it tends to do more harm than good.
Expectations of Masculinity
In modern society, pressures placed on men are often associated with modern views of masculinity. Current ideas of masculinity mean that men are expected to come across as strong, being able to hide their feelings, and not come across as weak. However, this overlooks the fact that men also struggle with mental health such as anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders. When men are not expected to experience mental health issues, they often go undiagnosed far more often than women.
Mental health symptoms in men often present themselves differently than how they do in women. People associate depression and anxiety with feelings of nervousness, sadness, and an overall gray cloud hovering over someone’s life; however, these are common symptoms in women. While men experience these symptoms, they also present in other ways, such as more impulsive behaviors, overworking themselves, being more irritable, and even engaging in addictive behaviors as a coping mechanism. Telling someone to “man up” overlooks these symptoms and often puts the person in a more precarious situation.
Men often do not receive the same attention as women when it comes to mental health. They are shoved to the side and often told to “man up,” meaning to push down their feelings and toughen up to fit society’s expectations of how men should act. However, this does more harm than good in the long run; it overlooks worsening mental health symptoms and can cause men to fall down the rabbit hole of addiction and mental health. Alta Loma Transformational Services treats men specifically to help combat this stigma. By providing a structured environment where residents can find emotional and psychological stability, we will address the whole person and help them to integrate successfully into society. Get help today by calling (866) 457-3843.