Mental health is being given more and more time in the limelight lately, and that's a brilliant thing. But there's always more we can do, and there are still too many people out there who don't understand it, and too many people suffering in silence.
The following is a post I shared back in November 2016, and I wanted to share it again, as it's something that I feel is important to keep talking about.
Being male and talking about mental health are two things that usually don't go together, is it stigma? Is it the worry of admitting something is wrong? Is it the worry of what others will think? What if I cry?
There are many reasons why men don't talk, I've done a lot of campaigning for Mind the mental health charity for many years which has seen me run marathons, the Great South run dressed as a stress ball, I was even interviewed for their corporate film and got to meet HRH Duchess of Kent for the work I have done for the charity.
All the runs, work I have done is in the hope that at least one male WILL talk which could in turn save his life. Suicide in men under the age of 45 is the biggest killer and I hope that one persons life is saved, and one family is spared from going through what my family has gone through since the death of my brother in November 2012.
Mental health is being talked about a lot more, however large organisations aren't doing enough to support their employees through tough times but I WILL continue fighting to get my voice heard.
Take time to talk to your friends, family and colleagues as it could be that ONE conversation that's saves a life.
Below is a photo of me from 2014 when I ran the London marathon for Mind. It was 2nd time lucky as unfortunately in 2013 I suffered a stroke 2 weeks before I was due to run, so it was a really tough journey to learn to walk again and eventually toe the start line a year later.
By Andrew Cohen-Wray
There is still a stigma around men and mental health. Though we are getting better at talking about it and understanding, we've still got a long way to go.
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