Lunch and Learn, Black men, mental health, silent struggles, unmasking

LLP305: Black Men & Mental Health; Unmasking Silent Struggles

So let's talk about Black Men & Mental Health…

A lot of us men grew up in an environment that tells us to “man up” at a very young age. As a result, we grow up as adults with unresolved traumas and issues.

Seeking professional help is never easy; it is even more difficult if you come from a minority. Black men struggle to look for professional help due to lack of representation, and only 26% of Hispanic and Black American men ever availed of mental health services despite experiencing obvious symptoms of mental health issues.

That’s why in continuation of our Men’s health month series, we will be talking about everything that surrounds the topic of mental health in African-American men. We will be talking not only about the medical aspect of it, but the societal angle of it as well.

Tune in as I discuss the reasons why African-American men continue to struggle with mental health and how we as a community could help each other move forward in the positive direction of getting and feeling better.

Why you need to check this episode:

  • Find out the roots of why men, particularly from the Black community, continue to struggle with mental health despite the availability of help;
  • Learn the importance of asking and understanding the “why” behind men’s actions and/or reactions toward stressors; and
  • Realize the significance of having a proper and reliable support system in dealing with your mental health struggles

“You have to acknowledge the elephant in the room. You have to acknowledge that there is a stigma that is attached to mental health and black men that we won’t even allow to connect. ”– Dr. Berry Pierre

Notable Quotes:

“When you have to ask yourself, ‘Why does color matter?’, then you already answered the question. Because then, you’re saying ‘I don’t even recognize that there are structural, access-related, and professional-related differences in the way color affects how I deal with the disease”. – Dr. Berry Pierre

“When you’re trying to focus on your mental health and you can't find the right people to take care of you, or even if you find someone who’s willing to take care of you, and they don’t take care of you equally, that is where problems arise”. – Dr. Berry Pierre

“You can be financially healthy; you can work on trying to be physically healthy. But if your mental health isn’t there, then guess what? It doesn’t even matter.” – Dr. Berry Pierre

“Because we start young on not letting our emotions come out and not letting ourselves be free with how we feel, we carry our burden to adulthood.” – Dr. Berry Pierre

“Don’t act like the stigma is not there… We have to attack the stigma because that’s how you can move forward and move us in the positive direction to getting and feeling better.” – Dr. Berry Pierre

“For a lot of men, their reality is not something that they like. Their reality is not something that they are happy with. Their reality is not something that they are cool with. So guess what? They do the activities that get them away from that reality.” – Dr. Berry Pierre

“You should have someone to be able to say ‘I need some help’. Because if you don’t, we know that stress has no problem sitting where it’s at”. – Dr. Berry Pierre

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