There is an on-going, increasing and SILENT crisis in our country’s health care. Can you guess? It is the lack of any emphasis, fund-raising, big events and work on the health and well-being of men.
Due to a lack of awareness, poor health education, lack of media hoopla and culturally induced behavior patterns in their work and personal lives, men’s health and well-being are deteriorating steadily. Although the statistics have been better in the past, men on average are now living five (5) years less than women!
What are “culturally induced behavior patterns?” Ever so slowly changing (maybe), these culture patterns include lots of long-standing ideas – for instance, men don’t cry, men don’t do certain chores because they are women’s work, men always work outside the home, men are strong and don’t need doctors. Ah, that’s the one. I frequently say with a smile, “All men went to the same school – it is not necessary to go to the Doctor. You will likely get better in a few days, if not you can go to the Doctor when you can’t function at all because of the issue.”
I wonder where that “school” is. If we could only find it, and use the same techniques they used to ingrain the “no need to go to the Doctor” idea to teach important issues of the day, it would be amazingly effective all across our culture. I don’t know how it was done, but it sure is strong.
But I digress. We need to end the silence on this issue and remind men to stay healthy.
June is Men’s Health Month. It is promoted by the wearing of blue, and donations to the charity Men’s Health Network, a national non-profit organization whose mission is to reach men and their families where they live, work, play and pray with health prevention messages and tools, screening programs, education material, etc. For more information, contact Men’s Health Network at 202-543-6461, x101 and reference “Wear Blue” in the subject line. Additionally, you may e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org.