Terminology and Stereotypes
Please note that I am using some stereotypes in this blog with the intention of highlighting some common patterns for how men and women tend seek supports. I am not assuming the below to be true for all men and women, and neither am I speaking to the wide range of gender identities, and folks who may be anywhere on the continuum of gender identity.
Seeking Counselling Therapy in Winnipeg
While women are often the ones who seek counselling therapy, typically making up nearly two-thirds of therapy clients, men benefit just as much from therapy as do women. But men do not seek counselling therapy nearly as often as women. One factor for this difference is due to men not liking the idea of opening up to a stranger and sharing their feelings.
Therapy, then, isn’t a very naturally masculine process. But I want to encourage men to push past their discomfort and seek counselling therapy anyway because it can really help in so many areas of your life.
Here are some of the reasons why men should see a Winnipeg Counsellor:
Men Often Struggle with Identity
Many men today struggle with what it means to be a man. Decades ago, the definition was more clearly defined (though most often not for the better), but nowadays a man can get quite lost. Examples include:
- Should they be masculine? Or is masculinity somehow toxic? Even sexist?
- Should they show their emotions? Or not?
- Should they protect women, or is that belittling women?
This all is quite confusing for men, and too many men look to media and advertising to find clues about how and who they should be, and this can be very damaging.
Counselling therapy can be a space where men can learn to define themselves on their own terms and for who they really are.
Gaining Understanding and Tools for Your Relationships
Men are from Mars, women are from Venus. Right? Ok, that’s definitely stereotyping! But is there a grain of truth in this stereotype when we look at the average man? Let’s assume momentarily that there is some truth in this stereotype:
In their day-to-day interactions, broadly speaking, men tend to live a bit more on a logical plane of existence, and less on the emotional plane. No one plane of existence is right and no one is wrong, it is simply how men tend to be.
And again, remember that I am intentionally using this stereotype to make the point that there is a difference between women and men seeking supports, certainly as things are today. We have seen many changes over the past decade(s), such as men showing emotions more than in the past, but men still tend to feel less comfortable showing emotions than do women, on average.
But, since men tend to struggle to express their feelings and express themselves in a way their female counterpart(s) can relate to, when a man is in a relationship with the opposite sex, the relationship can take a hit due to emotional distance, and the two can grow apart due to the differences in how they tend to show, express, and process emotions.
Counselling therapy can help men safely explore their feelings and learn how to express themselves, even show more vulnerability.
Become the Best Version of You
Seeing a counsellor in Winnipeg DOES NOT mean something is wrong with you. Yes, that is true even if you are a man. Often, counselling therapy can be a way to explore who you are, what you want, and how to reach your goals. In other words, counselling therapy can be a means by which you become the best version of yourself. If you hit the gym x times per week to get into the best physical shape of your life, why not hit the therapist’s office to get into the best mental and emotional shape of your life? This combination makes for a wonderful package of being in good physical and emotional shape.
Getting Help for Substance Abuse
Studies have shown that men are far more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol as a way to cope with the stress, emotions, and depression in their life. Counselling therapy can show you how to cope without the need for substances.
Lower Your Suicide Risk
In recent years there has been a disturbing rise in instances of suicide among men, particularly older men. One reason for this sad reality is likely a result of men not believing they have the right to seek help. When you’ve got to be the strong one all the time and fix other people’s problems, seeking outside help simply is not an option.
But it IS an option. Men need to get help with their issues so they don’t need turn to suicide.
Help with Fatherhood
Many men find themselves becoming a father at some point in their life, and unable to cope with the challenges and responsibilities that come with parenthood. Therapy allows men to discover who they want to be for their children and come up with a game-plan to develop this side of themselves.
If you are a man struggling with these issues or any others and would like to explore treatment options, please be in touch. I would be more than happy to discuss how I may be able to help.