The Family Counseling Center Focuses on Men’s Mental Health
Every June, organizations from across the globe recognize Men’s Health Month. June 12-18, 2023, is officially Men’s Health Week, meant to raise awareness of men’s health issues including physical and mental health. The Family Counseling Center of Fulton County is using June to highlight the importance of mental health in men’s lives.
Across the country, approximately one-fifth of the population deals with mental health issues. Mental health includes social, emotional, and psychological well-being and affects nearly all aspects daily life including physical health. 1 in 5 individuals suffer from some form of mental illness and, while mental illness is more commonly reported in women, men are less likely to seek mental health treatment due to stigma and the perception that men must “tough it out.” Studies show that nearly 1 in 10 men experience depression or anxiety but less than half seek or receive treatment. Men are four times more likely than women to die by suicide annually.
Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Some symptoms of mental disorders in men may include, but are not limited to:
- Escapist behavior, such as spending a lot of time at work or on sports
- Anger, irritability, and/or aggressiveness
- Physical symptoms, such as headaches, pain, and/or digestive issues
- Controlling, violent or abusive behavior
- Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
- Difficulty concentrating, feeling restless, or on edge
- Misuse of alcohol and/or drugs
- Risky behavior including reckless driving
- Increased worry or feeling stressed
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Thoughts or behaviors that interfere with work, family, or social life
- Thoughts of death or suicide or suicide attempts
“Men in the United States are expected to live nearly six years less than women,” notes Michael L. Countryman, Executive Director of The Family Counseling Center. “Men, in general, avoid healthcare including regular doctors’ visits and follow-ups. Overall, seeking assistance for mental health issues carries a stigma – one that keeps many men from the care they deeply need. We want to highlight that it is okay to reach out to friends, family, and mental health professionals like those at The Family Counseling Center. Communication is the best way of healing.”
If you or someone you know is struggling or having thoughts of suicide, call or text the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or chat at 988lifeline.org.