A brief mental health awareness talk

On the occasion of Father's Day, let's try to take proper care of our fathers, would be fathers and the future fathers. When we say 'take care' it usually means 'to take care of your physical health'. But it's also very important to address the mental health. It is usually said, that mothers are very emotional, overprotective, sensitive; they go through hormonal changes, menopause which states that their mental health should be addressed. that means our fathers don't feel for us, are they not sensitive? our fathers actually go through a silent crisis.

According to one of the data obtained on World mental health day 2017, it states that 30-49 years Indian men are worst affected mental health group. In India, the typical so-called 'father figure' should be strong, tough-minded, not to express his emotions, face the hardships alone without involving the family members. Due to such patriarchy system, men usually had to keep quiet and suppress their feelings. Those men who speak out are considered to be weak, inferior or broken. With modern lifestyles, changes in value system, we feel that today's men are changing, but that's a very small number. It's important to realize that men are human beings too who experience the same as the women.

Parenthood is very challenging, not only for mothers but also for fathers too. With growing awareness, we come to know about the postpartum depression in new mothers. But postnatal stress can happen in fathers too. Stress is not caused only by the internal hormonal changes but the environmental and social factors contribute a lot. In some of the cosmopolitan companies,  paternal leaves are granted for new fathers, which is a necessary aspect. Fathers require time to adjust to the new role with the added responsibilities. It's important to understand this transition period and support them. 

As years pass by, the economic stability becomes an essential role of the fathers to handle the growing family. Nowadays, with growing competition in every field, there is stressful work atmosphere. Women are growing so rapidly, that it is creating inferiority complexes, ego issues among men, leading to breakups and divorces. All this stress gets accumulated to cause physical as well as psychological difficulties. Symptoms like fatigue, irritability, loss of interest, lack of adequate food and sleep occurs. Physical signs which actually could act as indicators of emotional problems include racing heart, tightening chest, ongoing headaches, digestion issues. The science behind male mental health shows a low level of testosterone being correlated with depression, stress, anxiety and mood swings. Most commonly seen problem is the alcohol and drug dependence. Children see their fathers under the intoxicated state. Their aggression and behaviours create fear and an indirect rift between the fathers and their children. Young boys and adolescents, sometimes follow the footsteps shown by their fathers. Severe issues experienced leads to suicide too. According to the facts, though women have most suicidal ideations, men actually commit more suicide.

Thus, it's important to make our fathers aware that you are not alone, you can express yourself, and we'll understand you. Eat well, stay active, and be aware of your substance consumption. Most importantly, when any problem hits us, we visit a physician or an expert; similarly, when you experience any stressful situation affecting yourself, please do visit a psychologist or a psychiatrist as they will be in a better position to guide you.

So please take care daddy!