Insight Group member and Editorial Panel member Chris Hicken believes that while men look after their families, they don’t take much care of their own physical and mental health. He says, it’s time that stopped being the case.
Men are programmed not to talk about their feelings or their health.
It’s perceived as a sign of weakness to open ourselves up to others. But in truth, it’s the exact opposite - it takes strength and courage to talk about our feelings!
Speak to someone
Being able to speak to someone whether it’s your GP, a healthcare worker or even a trusted friend or valued family member will help to put your mind at ease. And what better time to do it than November?
November is a month that places male illnesses such as prostate and testicular cancer, as well as suicide, in the spotlight. The Internet is flooded with advice on those topics and leaflets are everywhere from GP’s surgeries to libraries.
I’m not suggesting we add to that. What I am saying is that we know where to go to get the information we need, but it’s a waste of time unless, after reading, we take some action to do something about that lump we might have found or that thought that is in the back of our minds that we just can’t shake.
We have a duty to look after our families, but we can’t do that properly if we’re having problems with our own health and doing nothing about it.
As men, we are usually very quick to act if our car is playing up to get it booked into a garage, and we do that because we depend on it in our everyday lives… just the way our families depend on us.
Perhaps then, we should look at ourselves as the engine of our families. The longer we’re well maintained and working at full capacity, the better it will be for those we love. From one man to another please act now to get the physical and mental health help you need if you feel something’s wrong.
One day our grandchildren will thank us.
Find men’s health support
- Movember: Movember is our time to unite. To take on mental health, suicide, prostate cancer and testicular cancer.
- Prostate Cancer UK: Prostate cancer is not always life-threatening. But when it is, the earlier you catch it the more likely it is to be cured.
- Macmillan Cancer Support: If your partner, family member, friend or colleague has testicular cancer, there can be a lot to think about. Macmillan can offer advice and support.
- UK Men’s Sheds: Men's Sheds are community spaces for men to connect, converse and create.
- Andy's Man Club: ANDYSMANCLUB is a men's suicide prevention charity, offering free peer-to-peer support groups across the UK and online.