For the past few years, mental health has become a topic people feel more comfortable discussing. There have been movies, shows, TED talks, and songs that depict deteriorating mental health. People are beginning to relate with one another on their struggles, and some are even booking appointments with therapists to understand exactly what's going on inside their heads.
Although we are stepping in the right direction of starting conversations about mental health, there's one thing missing: inviting males to this conversation.
In this day and age, men are still worried that they will be seen as "weak" if they express their mental health concerns. They have grown up with people telling them that crying and expressing their emotions are the opposites of strength.
They've been exposed to environments supporting toxic masculinity for a long time, and they're afraid to admit that they need help, too. Once they discover their own personal struggles, they feel like they've failed as a male.
So let's get this straight: men are not weak for having emotions. Men can still be masculine while also struggling with mental illness or disorder.
It's time to start extending the love and support of mental illnesses to not only the female population but to males as well. Their feelings have been put on the back burner for so long, that many have been too afraid to stand up and say anything about it. If we're going to make changes in this world, we need to include anyone and everyone. Instead of living inside the beliefs of our parents and grandparents, we must create new beliefs based on the changing world around us.
If you truly believe that everyone should have the freedom to express how they feel, then you shouldn't make fun of men for doing so.
Men's struggles are just as important as anyone else's.