After our successful design and launch of the York Menfulness website, we were approached by Healthwatch Manchester to design a new website for their Manchester Men Speak Up project – an online platform where men in Greater Manchester can meet, chat and get support around mental health.
Men’s Mental Health statistics
According to the Mental Health Foundation:
- Three times as many men as women die by suicide
- Men aged 40 to 49 have the highest suicide rates in the UK
- Men report lower levels of life satisfaction than women, according to the Government’s national well-being survey
- Men are less likely to access psychological therapies than women: only 36% of referrals to NHS talking therapies are for men
In addition, men are far more likely than women to go missing, sleep rough, become dependent on alcohol and use drugs frequently. On our statistics page, find out more about how mental health problems affect men and women differently.
Why don’t men talk about mental health?
Society’s expectations and traditional gender roles play a role in why men are less likely to discuss or seek help for their mental health problems. We know that gender stereotypes about women – the idea they should behave or look a certain way, for example – can be damaging to them. But it’s important to understand that stereotypes and expectations can also damage men.
Men are often expected to be the breadwinners and to be strong, dominant and in control. While these aren’t inherently bad things, they can make it harder for men to reach out for help and open up.
Some research also suggests that men who can’t speak openly about their emotions may be less able to recognise symptoms of mental health problems in themselves and less likely to reach out for support.
Men may also be more likely to use potentially harmful coping methods such as drugs or alcohol and less likely to talk to family or friends about their mental health. However, research suggests men will get the help that meets their preferences and is easy to access, meaningful and engaging. For example, Men’s Sheds provides community spaces for men to connect and chat, often over practical activities.
Is depression different for men?
While there isn’t a different sort of ‘male depression’, some symptoms are more common in men than women. These include irritability, sudden anger, increased loss of control, risk-taking and aggression.
Men may also be more likely to use alcohol and drugs to cope with their depression rather than talking about it. They may use escapist behaviour too, such as throwing themselves into their work.
If you’re experiencing depression, there is help available. Read more about the symptoms of depression and ways to get support.
Suicide and men
In 2017, nearly 6,000 suicides were recorded in Great Britain. Of these, 75% were men. Suicide is the largest cause of death for men under 50.
Higher rates of suicide are also found in minority communities, including gay men, war veterans, men from BAME backgrounds, and those with low incomes. Less well-off middle-aged men are particularly likely to die by suicide. You can read more about the risk factors for this group on the Samaritans website.
Refresh your website!
Check out the new Manchester Men Speak Up website at: https://www.manchestermenspeakup.org.uk
And if you’d like a website designing, or feel your current site is in need of a refresh, contact us – firstname.lastname@example.org