“Boys have mental illnesses too, you are not alone.
This is my mental health chalk message that I made for all the males around the world.
Many boys feel that they can’t cry in public because people might laugh at them because there is a stereotype that ‘boys don’t cry.’ Believing that only girls can cry is very harmful for the mental health of boys.
Some of the reasons that stop boys and men from talking about their feelings are due to the stigma that talking about your feelings means that you are not a ‘strong’ man. Another reason is that they think they are alone in this and that they are the only people suffering; so they are too embarrassed to admit it and get help. Also there is pressure on boys to not express their feelings otherwise they may get laughed at bullied.
Some people say ‘man up’ to boys and men because of this stigma. We shouldn’t say ‘man up’ because it is the wrong definition of what a man should be like. We should let boys express their feelings the way the rest of the world expresses their feelings or in a healthy way.
‘Don’t be such a wimp’, ‘don’t be such a girl’ are things that people sometimes say to boys and men. The message that people get from this is that they are ‘weak’ and not like how a ‘real’ man should be! And who said girls are not strong!
Some people also say ‘get over it’, this message is telling us that our issue means nothing, which makes our mental health worse and may take an even longer time to get over”
For more information and support with mental health for men and boys, please go to CALM.