The subject of suicide amongst men hit the press again last week following the release of a report commissioned by The Samaritans titled: Men and Suicide: Why it’s a social issue
“Men in their 30s, 40s and 50s are at the highest risk of suicide as job markets change and families breakdown, leaving them in turmoil about their role in life”.
Other reasons cited in the report are:
- Cultural changes like the decline of traditional masculine jobs and breakdown of lifelong marriages have challenged the men’s sense of ‘masculine pride and identity’.
- Working-class men have been affected by recent rises in unemployment and the shift from manufacturing to a service economy which values people skills. They are ten times more likely to kill themselves than affluent men.
- The male role is less well defined than it was 20, 30 years ago and men have great difficulty responding to the challenge of how we define ourselves as men,”
- One of the problems for men is this need to aspire to a kind of gold standard of masculinity which is often very difficult to meet.
Does this mean that life is always going to be plain sailing? No. We are told that the sun shines on the righteous and the non righteous and the opposite stands true. We are not immune to having the wheels fall off our own lives, and when that happens (and it does), what support mechanisms do we have in place? What focuses our attention back onto God’s word and promises during very difficult times?
One way is by cultivating a trusted Band of Brothers within our church that meet regularly ‘to do life together’. More so, it’s doing life with our non Christian mates. Men inherently suffer in silence when something is wrong and are not the best in asking for help, until it can be too late.
However, it’s not too late for us to make a difference to another man’s life.
CVM is all about supporting men from the local church to reach men for Christ. If you are willing to be a positive influence in getting men together, then drop us a line. We can help resource you.
The report can be viewed here: http://www.samaritans.org/media-centre/our-campaigns/were-your-corner/were-your-corner-research