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A lot of men have trouble getting in touch with their emotional side. With there already being such a stigma for getting help when you feel you’re depressed, anxious, or need help processing trauma, it’s important that both men and women are aware of the symptoms of mental illness in men, which can often differ from the symptoms experienced by women. While data from the National Institute on Mental Health (NIMH) shows that men tend to experience mental illness at a lower prevalence than women, millions of American men do experience mental illness such as depression or anxiety every year. And sadly, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has found that men are more likely to die by suicide than women.

Our culture places very high expectations on men. Men are supposed to be the head of their household, the provider for their family, and the manager of the family finances. They also feel tremendous pressure to fix things. Men are also taught from the time they are young boys that they aren’t supposed to talk about their feelings, which makes reaching out to a life coach or therapist for help all that more difficult for them.

There seems to be something about traditional masculinity that stops men from reaching out. You’ve all heard, “Boys don’t cry.” Or maybe you’ve even told a guy friend to “man up.” These statements may sound harmless, but they feed into the idea that seeking help is somehow unmanly. Resilience is an awesome trait to build, but it’s not exclusively masculine. And needing help to get there shouldn’t be a matter of shame for men, either. Remember that talking with a therapist isn’t a sign of weakness. It takes strength and determination to face your mental health head-on. Anxiety and depression can have a massive impact on your health and well-being. It’s important to understand the signs and symptoms to know when to seek a therapist.


Counseling for Men in the New Orleans Area

Depression can vary from person to person. Here are some general signs that you might be experiencing depression include:

  • constantly feeling sad or low
  • feeling completely hopeless
  • low self esteem
  • crying a lot or being unable to stop crying
  • feeling guilty for no reason
  • irritability and isolating yourself away from others
  • lack of motivation and not finding joy in life
  • suicidal thoughts or thinking about harming yourself

It’s not just mental though. You can experience physical symptoms too:

  • slow speech or movements
  • loss of appetite and weight loss (or vice versa)
  • serious lack of energy
  • low sex drive
  • insomnia or changes in your sleep pattern


Counseling for Men in the New Orleans Area

Like depression, anxiety isn’t a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. But common symptoms include:

  • a feeling of restlessness, like you can’t sit still
  • feeling overly nervous or anxious
  • an overwhelming sense of dread
  • constant worrying and feeling on edge
  • difficulty concentrating
  • irritability
  • difficulty falling asleep because of worrying

Physical symptoms of anxiety can be equally distressing:

  • muscle aches and feeling tense
  • tremors
  • twitches
  • an extremely heavy or rapid heartbeat
  • sweating
  • shortness of breath
  • stomach pain
  • diarrhea
  • extreme fatigue
  • sleeping difficulties

Fortunately, this stigma is slowly beginning to lessen. Men’s therapy is something that can help males with a lot of things in life that they never figured out on their own or may not have been taught how to deal with. Therapy for men doesn’t quite carry the stigma that it once did. Education about the importance of mental health is growing. The truth is, there are lots of ways to be a man because there are lots of ways to be a human and seeing a therapist can greatly benefit future generations of men, fathers and sons.


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