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The stigma of men’s IPV and mental health

Posted on June 9, 2022 by Vauxhall Advance

We’re sure most people have either followed or at the very least heard of the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard trial — which is arguably one of the highest-profile cases to be televised. After the six-week-long trial, the jury ended up siding mostly with Depp, awarding him $15 million to be paid by Heard whereas Heard was only awarded $2 million.

A lot of dirty laundry was aired out for both parties during the trial, and it opens the door further on the topic of men being domestically abused by their significant other.

Now it’s true that women suffer from Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) more than men, and in Canada in 2019, 79 per cent of all victims that suffered from IPV were women, however, we ask the question — how many men have been too scared to speak up?

The quote from the trial that stands out most to us is from a recording where Heard says, “Tell the world, Johnny, tell them, ‘Johnny Depp, I, a man, I’m a victim too of domestic violence’. And see how many people believe or side with you.”

Which we believe is an extremely telling quote, and showcases how society views IPV against a man. A woman can speak up about being abused and be believed, however, a man may speak up and just simply be told to ‘man up’ — but it happens to men too. We’re glad to see that this stigma is beginning to lose its traction and more and more people are beginning to see that men, too, also need help from time to time.

This goes along with men’s mental health and how men are just simply scared to ask for help and be looked down upon as ‘less than a man.’ We’re here to say that you’re not less of a man if you feel the need to speak up and ask for help. Everyone has good times and bad times in their lives and sometimes we, as humans need a helping hand through the worst of it.

Men’s mental health is a subject that’s being talked about more and more as the years go by — and it’s wonderful to see the stigma finally being unravelled around a man needing to be the stalwart, unbreakable shield that will provide unconditionally and work themselves to their core. Among Canadians, four out of every five suicides are male and as is quoted in the Canadian Mental Health Association, “Beliefs about masculinity also encourage men’s general lack of interest in health issues; many men simply don’t believe they are susceptible to depression, so why bother learning about it?”

And that’s quite a sad reality.

Positive mental health is important, and as we move out of COVID back into relatively normal lives, it’s imperative to remember to be there for each other and to reach out a helping hand to friends, family or loved ones that you believe may be suffering. We’ve said it many times over COVID, but we’re still all in this together — so look out for one another, offer a stranger a smile on the street or pay for the person’s food behind you in the drive-thru. You never know how it could brighten up a person’s day.

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