Men are 50% less likely than women to consult a health care provider to address emotional difficulties according to the Canadian Community Health Survey Cycle (2006).
Our cultural conception of masculinity makes it hard for many men to seek help especially for any sort of psychological or emotional difficulty. Whether it’s the stressors associated with a demanding job, the frustrations and hardships that can accompany challenges in an intimate relationship, or the dis-ease that can emerge when one’s life isn’t on-track, men tend to be reluctant to reach out for support. Traditional male socialization prescribes boys and men to be strong, tough, and autonomous. “Don’t be sissy”, “boys don’t cry”, “suck it up, be a man”, and “man-up” are common messages and roles men have to adhere to.
If men stray from the socially prescribed male role by disclosing their fears, hurts, or challenges to others, they are often at risk of being criticized or mocked. Vulnerability is considered “weak”, and weakness is shunned, despite the universality and inevitability of this experience.
Our psychologists work to create an environment where men are not shunned for being vulnerable, instead are encouraged to openly share their vulnerabilities. In fact it is key to understanding their needs, experiences, and improving their lives.
Ultimately, seeking help requires a tremendous amount of strength and courage. Our psychologists can help.