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How Therapy Can Help Men: Understanding Unique Challenges

How Therapy Can Help Men

Men might be less likely than women to seek counselling or therapy services for many reasons. Some common barriers include the stigma associated with seeking mental health care; lack of access due to insurance coverage; fear of judgment from peers; difficulty expressing emotions openly; feeling like they should just “tough it out” on their own; not knowing where or how to find appropriate services; and believing there isn’t enough time in the day for self-care activities like going to counselling appointments.

Some men may have had negative experiences in past therapeutic relationships, which could lead them away from wanting additional help from a professional.

depression in men

How Can We Change That?

To address these issues, we need better education about mental health topics within our communities so men feel comfortable discussing these topics without shame or judgment. We also need more accessible resources available for those who don’t have adequate insurance coverage, including free clinics, sliding scale fees at private practices and virtual telehealth options, which can increase convenience when scheduling an appointment around work-family obligations etc.

Therapy programs geared towards male clients can help therapists understand this population’s unique needs in treatment settings while creating a safe space where they feel understood & respected throughout the therapeutic process.

Why men's mental health matters

Men often find it difficult to effectively express their emotions due to being discouraged from doing so in childhood. Men can be socialized from an early age to repress their emotions, resulting in a buildup of intense feelings that may manifest later on.

Therapy allows men to learn how to identify and articulate their emotions without fear or judgment. Through this process, when men seek therapy, they gain insight into themselves and develop better coping strategies for dealing with stressors throughout life.

Many men struggle with relationships and communication skills. It’s common for people—especially those who have been taught not to display emotion—to struggle to express themselves clearly when communicating with others, especially intimate partners or family members.

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Understanding the Unique Challenges Men Face in Mental Health

Societal Expectations and Gender Stereotypes

It’s no secret that men face unique pressures regarding mental health. From an early age, boys are taught to adhere to traditional masculine stereotypes – be tough, don’t show emotion, and be the provider. Unfortunately, these expectations can have a detrimental effect on their mental well-being as they grow older.

A feeling of insufficiency can afflict many males if they cannot abide by the set expectations, which may result in sadness or unease.

Pressure To Conform To Traditional Masculinity

The pressure for men to conform is especially strong in today’s society, where there is still a stigma attached to expressing emotions openly. As a result, men may feel a sense of shame or humiliation in disclosing their mental health issues due to the potential for condemnation from friends and those close to them.

This often prevents them from seeking professional help, which could make all the difference in managing their condition effectively.

Emotional Suppression And The "Tough Guy" Image

This pressure also encourages emotional suppression among many men who put on a “tough guy” image rather than being honest about how they feel inside. As a result, they may bottle up negative emotions such as anger, sadness or frustration instead of addressing them head-on, leading to further problems, including substance abuse issues and even physical violence towards others or themselves in extreme cases.

By acknowledging men’s mental health difficulties, we can dismantle traditional gender roles and foster more open dialogues around emotional well-being for all genders and orientations.

This way, nobody has to suffer in silence anymore.

Unique Mental Health Issues Affecting Men

Men face unique mental health concerns and often overlooked or misunderstood issues. Depression and anxiety manifest differently in men than women, and substance abuse is more prevalent among men. Male postpartum depression is a serious issue for new fathers but is rarely discussed. We need to recognize these difficulties so that men can receive help.

Depression and anxiety are two of men’s most common mental health disorders. Though signs may resemble those seen in females, there can be nuances in how these disorders display themselves among men.

Men may experience increased irritability, anger outbursts, fatigue, difficulty concentrating or sleeping, restlessness or agitation as signs of depression or anxiety instead of sadness or worry, as many women might experience. In addition, men may be more likely to abuse substances, including opioid dependency.

Male postpartum depression affects up to 10% of new fathers, though it often goes unrecognized compared to its more widely-known counterpart affecting mothers – postpartum depression (PPD).

New fathers may experience guilt, stress, fear, loneliness, confusion and financial stressors associated with fatherhood that can lead to symptoms of depression, such as low moods and decreased motivation. In addition, these issues can lead to depressive symptoms like low moods, reduced motivation and energy levels etc.

No matter what your gender identity is, it’s essential to acknowledge when help is necessary for managing mental health issues so that you can recover swiftly instead of waiting until the situation worsens before consulting an experienced therapist. In addition, you can access evidence-based treatments explicitly tailored to your needs by openly discussing your struggles in therapy sessions.

Therapy Options for Men

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

  • The principles of CBT and its effectiveness for men
  • Addressing thought patterns and behaviours

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

  • Emotion regulation and distress tolerance skills
  • Improving interpersonal relationships

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)

  • Accepting thoughts and feelings without judgment
  • Committing to actions in line with personal values

Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT)

  • A goal-oriented approach to problem-solving
  • Efficient, time-sensitive therapy option for men

Psychodynamic Therapy

Art Therapy

  • Providing a non-verbal outlet for emotional expression: Art therapy allows men to communicate and process complex emotions creatively, without the pressure of traditional conversation.
  • Enhancing self-awareness and personal growth: Engaging in artistic activities helps men explore their inner world, uncover hidden emotions, and develop a deeper understanding of themselves and their mental health.

Life Coaching For Men

  • Results-driven techniques to help you understand yourself and acquire the skills to improve your life
  • Our life coaching for men services for men provide expert guidance and support specifically tailored to the unique needs of men

Get matched with a counsellor

video therapy appointments

Want online therapy? Start sessions instantly— no logins or passwords required. Stress-free and easy to use.

When You're Ready to Start Therapy, Know That There is Help Out There for You

You will feel empowered and better prepared if you proactively search for the ideal therapist, maximize the initial phone consultation, and gear up for your first session.

One piece of advice we offer to men who wish to begin therapy is to ensure they find the perfect match for their specific needs,” says Pareen Sehat. “In our practice, we hire therapists who concentrate on working with men and often observe that they prefer and respond most effectively to straightforward, goal-driven methods, centring on tangible behavioural changes.

Typically, once we lay this foundation, the men we collaborate with notice rapid improvements in their well-being and become more receptive to engaging in the deeper emotional work that can significantly transform their relationships and enhance their overall happiness.”

How We Can Help​

Therapy can help men to understand their unique mental health issues and develop the tools needed for improved emotional well-being. Men should be urged to access expert assistance when required, as therapy is an efficacious means of handling tension, job stress, unease, melancholy and other issues that could come up in life.

By reducing the stigma around seeking help for mental health problems among men, we can create a healthier society where everyone feels safe discussing their struggles without fear or shame.

Take the first step towards improving your mental health today and contact Well Beings Counselling for tailored therapy services explicitly designed to help men. Our experienced therapists will work with you to find a solution that best suits your needs.

Picture of Pareen Sehat MC, RCC

Pareen Sehat MC, RCC

Pareen’s career began in Behaviour Therapy, this is where she developed a passion for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approaches. Following a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Psychology she pursued a Master of Counselling. Pareen is a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. She specializes in CBT and Lifespan Integrations approaches to anxiety and trauma. She has been published on major online publications such as - Yahoo, MSN, AskMen, PsychCentral, Best Life Online, and more.

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