This week (11th to 17th May) is Mind Week 2009, a series of events organised
by the charity mind to raise awareness of mental health issues.
This year the theme is on Men's mental health because evidence shows that
men can struggle with being open about mental health issues and are much
less likely than women to seek the help they need. Many believe that men
have difficulty seeking help because they are brought up to believe that a
'real man' must be tough and not show any emotions.
In fact research done by mind in the run up to mind week paints a concerning
picture with :
* 37 per cent of men are feeling worried or low
* men account for 75 per cent of suicides
* only 23 per cent of men would see their GP if they felt low for over a
* men were only half as likely to talk to friends about problems as
* 31 per cent of men would feel embarrassed about seeking help for
To make matters worse, if men do look for help they may find that the
services available do not meet their needs, with many GP surgeries services
sometimes feeling as though they are geared towards women and there are many
more groups dedicated to helping women through mental distress than there
are for men.
During this week, mind are campaigning to raise awareness of the problem and
are specifically working towards the following aims :
1. The Government to prioritise men's mental health.
2. Primary care services to make it easier for men to seek help.
3. Mental health services to provide treatment and support that match men's
You can help the campaign by encouraging your MP to sign an early day motion
that calls on the Government to create a Men's Mental Health Strategy. They
need as many MPs as possible to sign this EDM in order to put men's mental
health on the political agenda.
To access a letter on the early day motion go to :