November 19 is International Men’s Day. From a young age, boys are encouraged to present a strong and unaffected image. As they grow it can often mask the deep need to communicate what is going on for them emotionally. This is a recognised contributor to an increased suicide rate in men.
International Men’s Day aims to raise awareness of mental health issues in men, as well as other health and societal issues, by encouraging men to open up and communicate with others. The traditional ideas of what masculinity means in society is changing, and need to change, if vulnerable men are to be protected from these harmful conditions.
As stereotypes and discrimination start to break down in our culture there is an emerging need for boys and young men to identify with positive role models that embody the true qualities of masculinity. Those of kindness, generosity, inner strength, and natural, open communication to present the true face of masculinity to those who need to see it.
International Men’s Day is also an occasion where men are encouraged to highlight discrimination against them and celebrate their positive achievements and contributions to communities, places of work, friendships, families, marriages, and childcare.
Everyone can get involved. Some ideas on what you can do can be found at How to Mark International Men’s Day 2021.