The traditional idea of masculinity is having a negative impact on the mental health of men.
The event MANDEM don’t cry 2.0, which sold out had a particular focus on the negative effect of traditional masculinity on men of colour, a conference in Bristol have been told.
It is feared that the attempt to generate a positive discussion of masculinity by high profile individuals, is doing nothing to help men in marginalised communities, who the panel discovered feel prohibited from being open and vulnerable.
The discussion comes at a poignant time following The University of Bristol’s £1 million investment into well-being following a bout of suicides earlier this year.
The event took place on Monday 19th March at The Arnolfini, Bristol and was organised by MANDEM, a platform that offers a unique space for young men of colour to comment on a wide range of topics and showcase their artwork.
Elias Williams, event organiser and founder of MANDEM explained ‘We are at a time in society where there are a lot of extremes going on. In terms of why [this discussion is important] now,
I think that the internet in particular has amplified a lot of extremes in society and with it there needs to be a fight back against some of the negativity.’
With high profile figures, from Prince William to Rio Ferdinand and Loyle Carner recently opening up to discuss their mental health, the panel discussed whether the idea of traditional masculinity is destructive to men’s mental health.
Mental health has been a poignant issue in Bristol over the past year with seven students taking their own life. Four of which were male.
Following this, more than 500 employers have signed up to the Time to Change employer pledge which requires an action plan about how mental health can be improved.
‘I think in today’s sense, it doesn’t mean anything anymore’
People of Bristol have been discussing their own ideas of masculinity in a bid to challenge traditional ideas of men and masculinity.