Today we welcome in the month of November and the good news is that means there are only 60 more days left until this year from hell will finally be over! But today also marks the beginning of Movember which also means that for the next 30 days men from all around the world will be growing a moustache in honour of their fellow men everywhere.
Movember, which originated in Australia is now a celebrated movement that raises awareness and funds for men’s health issues but more specifically; Prostate Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Depression and Suicide.
As we watch men’s moustaches grow we are paving the way towards critical and possibly life saving conversations to occur and reminding men of the importance of early cancer detection, making time for annual check-ups, getting more active and essentially decreasing the amount of preventable deaths.
From a young age some boys are taught (whether it be culturally, generationally or socially) that a “real man” shouldn’t cry, that a “real man” can’t show fear, that being compassionate is somehow a character flaw and that acting anything less than a tough guy is a sign of weakness.
These untruths only feed more and more into the many toxic masculine aggressions and can also lead many men towards feelings of “self-reliance and emotional repression”, both of which can very likely produce an increase in mental health problems such as Depression and Suicide.
A man with such toxic character traits may also make it much less likely that they will seek medical and/or psycholgical help for themselves and could therefore lead to a much shorter life span.
When I came upon this picture the other day (see attached) of the soon to be “President of the United States!!!” and his son Hunter Biden, I saw a picture of courage and strength, I saw a picture of acceptance and understanding, I saw a picture of forgiveness and I saw an unconditional love between a father and his son.
This picture went viral but sadly it did so for all the wrong reasons. Some individuals (to remain nameless) mocked and shamed this portrait as a toxic portrayal of how a “real man” should act and they are sending a very misguided and scary message to the world; especially to the most vulnerable and most impressionable young men among us.
I wish they could see what I see when I look at this picture and I wish that they could see how having the gift of a strong male role model in a young boy’s life could set the bar higher towards a society where men are embraced for their vulnerability instead of their toughness. We could sure use more men like that in the world right now.
Let’s “change the face of men’s health” (Movember’s motto) and squash the stereotypes by supporting and encouraging all men to see this picture through that same lens.
#changetheconversation #endingthestigma #movember #changethefaceofmenshealth #youareenough #noshame #itsoktonotbeok #youarenotalone #joebidenforpresident #iwishicouldvote