How men often respond to life events:
Aversion & avoidance / anxiety / insomnia depression / withdrawal / rumination / over-thinking / substance use & addictive & problematic behaviours (e.g. gambling, aggression) / isolation / distancing….or…
Our work is with men, who might not initially seem like a disadvantaged group in society. However, 76% of suicides are completed by men; 87% of rough sleepers are men and 34% of employed men feel constantly stressed and under pressure. Loneliness is often associated with old age but a recent report by CALM, The Campaign Against Living Miserably, suggests that loneliness becomes a big issue for men from the age of 35. This, in turn, can lead to issues such as depression, which contributes to the fact that everyday 13 men in the UK take their own lives. Underlying guilt, shame and other 'toxic' emotions get buried.
Men tend to be affected by the indirect consequences of enforced under- employment and significant life events like relationship changes, fatherhood and transitional periods leading to substantial negative effects that impact on their wellbeing. This often leads to poor physical and mental health and poor recovery from illness. Men are more likely to ‘act out’ e.g. excessive laddish banter, misuse drugs, drink too much, abuse, aggravate. This means that their problems can be overlooked or misdiagnosed. For example low level depression, Many men do minimal physical activity and have a poor diet. Men have more severe chronic conditions, higher death rates for all 15 leading causes of death, and die on average 7 years younger than women, are twice as likely to be referred to mental health services, are 4 times more likely than women to commit suicide, and typically men do not access mainstream health, community information & advice services for support.
Often many men do not have as positive, as lasting and as meaningful social connections needed when things get tough. They hide, withdraw, close down.
Getting help is not weakness. Courage is going deeper. No pressure, no diamonds.
These are the issues faced by men and which increased social interaction and friendship can change.
If you need urgent help
You may be feeling like taking your own life is the only option, but hold off making this decision for now and keep reading. There are lots of people, support services and ideas out there to help you get through this. It will feel hard for you at the moment but it won’t always feel this way. This overwhelming feeling might pass.
What would take your mind off things? Try going for a walk, doing something outside or listening to music. Use relaxation techniques, or just breathe
Think about how you can keep yourself safe, just until you can talk to someone
Speak to a friend or family member, someone you trust
If you are supported by a professional, tell them how you are feeling
Think about the things that are good in your life - the things you enjoy doing, the people in your life that make you feel good
Remember – there are people who care about you
If you need urgent support and the Stay Alive App click here
Try this Safety Diary Plan which can be helpful
The NHS have approved digital tools designed to help with mental health
Talk to someone
Pick up the phone and talk to someone or try one of the free, confidential online support services below:
Samaritans - 116123
Samaritans Norwich - 01603 611311 (charged at local rate)
The Walnut Tree Health and Wellbeing C.I.C provides recovery activities, crisis support, coaching and mentoring to emergency service personnel and serving members of the armed forces, military veterans and others, with complex mental health needs, including addiction brought about by out of the ordinary traumatic experiences. Call 01603 516580
Campaign against living miserably (CALM) (aims to prevent male suicide) - 0800 58 58 58
The Silver Line (helpline for older people) - 0800 4 70 80 90
PAPYRUS (help for young people considering suicide) - 0800 068 41 41
MIND- 0300 123 3393
Childline - 0800 1111
Wellbeing (in Norfolk & Waveney a partnership between MIND, NSFT and Relate) – 0300 123 1503
Affected by Suicide
‘Help is at Hand’ booklet offers support after someone may have died by suicide
Nelson’s Journey – Supporting bereaved children and young people throughout Norfolk: 01603 431788
MensCraft is working with OneNorwich and Public Health to reduce the levels of male suicide ideation in the city and across Norfolk.
We can offer some support via the Norwich Escalation and Avoidance Team. Our man Ed Roberts is part of the team. Referrals may be made via your GP.