international Men's day sets out to support male mental health, amongst other issues, in particular to highlight the increased suicide rates amongst men.
The campaign against living miserably (CALM) states that suicide is now the biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK. I found this statement astonishing!
Official Government figures show that male suicide rates have risen, in 2013, 8 out of 10 suicides were men which is the highest rate for 34 years.
So why do men seem to be at such greater risk?
The samaritans suggest the loss of the "breadwinner role" is driving a rise in suicidal middle aged men particularly in modern society with all its economic and social pressures.
Is this because statistically men find it much harder to admit they need help I wonder? Do they believe it makes them look less manly or weak? I would argue that a stronger man seeks help when he needs it but sometimes do men find themselves in despair before they realise?
Everybody needs support at times and talking therapy can explore issues, such as major life changes, that can cause a depressive hopeless mindset and offer practical ways of changing negative thinking.
Charities that help such CALM, Samaritans and the BPS are calling for a debate in government to raise awareness of the issue. Today on International Men's Day I'm focussing on the old slogan "it's good to talk". Let's encourage the men around us to improve their mental health and ask for help if they need it.
Anybody feeling suicidal should contact their Gp or the Samaritans ( 24hours a day). See further info page for contact details.