It’s okay to talk mental health
IT’S arguably the most important event on in the Whitsundays this week, but most Aussie blokes still don’t want to know about it.
I’m talking about the national awareness initiative called Mental Health Week.
About half of all Queenslanders will experience some form of mental illness in their lifetime. About one in five will experience a mental health issue in any one year.
But the really concerning thing is that most will never speak up or seek help because of the perceived stigma, especially among men in my age group (50s).
I should know – I was one of those who wouldn’t for fear of ridicule or being perceived as weak for acknowledging I had an issue with mental health.
‘Harden up’ you tell yourself, channelling the ignorant blokey mantra of your peers and/or parents’ generation. If only it was that easy.
For me, the relief from often crippling depression came when I finally plucked up the courage to talk to my GP and realised I needed to get professional help.
I now know that it wasn’t a sign of weakness – it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
If you won’t do it for yourself, do it for those who care.
Visit qldmentalhealth week.org.au to get a chat going today.