Lets face it , Men are a closed book for the best part when it comes to openly discussing feelings , more so when it comes to our mental health, men in general like to fix things and we shut down when we cant, its something you hear daily especially in men following the loss of a child .
Recently I was reading a article (Link) and it resonated with me because i could literally tick of the whole list of things i have suffered with at some point following the loss of Oliver. This is by no means a guide to us blokes but its a good start to figure out if your partner maybe suffering in silence , Some signs could be the following:
- Lack of interest in sex. This is a common effect of low mental health.
- Emotional outbursts. Sudden mood changes, anger, extreme distress irritability, can all flag up concerns about mental health
- Persistent depression and sadness. If you notice a lack of motivation and a general low mood that persists , it could be a sign of depression
- Changes to sleep patterns. Lack of sleep at night combined with feeling tired and irritable the next morning is a classic sign of depression. If you notice that somebody is not performing well in the morning, there could be an underlying problem.
- Low appetite and disinterest in food.
- Changes to normal hygiene and personal grooming levels. If a man is usually smartly dressed yet is now turning up to work unshaved and in unclean clothes it could be sign he is letting himself go because of depression.
- Drinking too much or taking drugs in an effort to escape from reality. Turning up to work with a hangover again is a sign that things may have got out of control.
- Becoming quiet and withdrawn and shunning social activities and interests that the person once enjoyed. Knowing the people you work with will give you the insight that there may be mental health issues going on.
- Increase in physical ailments such as flu, gastric problems and headaches. Psychosomatic ailments are a classic sign that a person is depressed.
- Forgetful or spaced out behaviour. If a man is dealing with inner turmoil, this may result in changes to punctuality and ordinary behaviour, leading to uncharacteristic errors and mistakes.
Its a tricky subject because for the best part most of us would sit there and say we are ok , but if you ask and they get defensive then its time to work out how to get them to open up , Let them know its ok to not be ok and its ok to want to cry and talk about what’s going on . Certainly the best thing to do following the loss of a child is to talk to each other , share the journey and seek professional help if needed.
And to the Men reading this , its time we opened up , its time to stop taking the world on your shoulders and trust me , 8 years into this I’ve done all the above and more and its not good , it leaves your a wreck, a functioning one but still not good .