Men’s Mental Health
What is toxic masculinity?
Toxic masculinity is the idea that men should follow the typical stereotypes that are often ingrained in us from a young age. Some of these beliefs include that men need to be strong, muscular, be dominant in their relationships and that they are the “superior” gender. Often these beliefs result in physical aggression, violence, bullying, homophobia and misogyny.
So why is toxic masculinity bad?
Apart from the obvious impact it could have on others, specifically those on the end of these toxic negative behaviours, toxic masculinity is associated with a host of other emotional and mental issues. For example, toxic masculinity is associated with higher levels of substance abuse and depression. One of the reasons being that in order to act like a “lad” someone will often have to deny themselves the opportunity to express how they really feel, in order to conform to toxic masculine behaviour. We know that trying to be someone you’re not can be extremely distressing, and toxic masculinity is an example of when people try incredibly hard to be a certain way. The sooner we move away from “lads drink pints” and “guys don’t have feelings” and “boys don’t cry” the better for all men’s mental health, as well as those on the other end of toxic masculinity.
This month I’m raising money for Men’s mental health. To donate to the campaign, click the link below. I’m €300 away from my target so any help would be greatly appreciated.
Joe O Brien
Trainee Health Psychologist
Spectrum Mental Health