Ladies, get ready to give your man some extra attention this Nov. 19, which is International Men’s Day (Women’s Day is celebrated annually on March 8).
Before you say, “but isn’t every day International Men’s Day?” — listen up.
Even feminists are on board with the day. Because, by definition, feminism is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. And as it stands now, men’s mental and physical health is not where it should be.
Sure, men may have it a little easier in some areas. For instance, a report released in March found the wage gap is actually getting bigger, rather than smaller. Another report the following month suggested the more professionally successful women are, the less they make relative to their male colleagues. Last month, the World Economic Forum also found women work 39 more days than men per year.
But that doesn’t mean men don’t have their own problems to deal with. Like suicide. That’s the focus of this International Men’s Day.
Canadian men are four times more likely to take their own lives than women, according to the Canadian Mental Health Association. Every day, seven men die by suicide.
WATCH: Two times as many people die by suicide compared to car crashes
“We’re conditioned not to reach out. We’re conditioned to suck it up and tough it out. First and foremost that needs to change,” Jesse Hayman told Global News last year.
He’s the Canadian community engagement director for Movember, which is dedicated to raising awareness about men’s health issues.
READ MORE: 7 common suicide myths
Hayman would like to see boys to be taught to reach out for help and not stifle their emotions.
“We need to break down those negative aspects of masculinity.”
Men’s health is also worse than women’s around the world, data from the World Health Organization shows. They live, on average, five years less than women (whose life expectancy was 74 in 2015).
“Children suffer when they lose a father or a grandfather prematurely,” reads the International Men’s Day website. “So let’s work together to turn the tide of male ill-health and suicide.”
WATCH: Identifying the signs of suicide
If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, visit suicideprevention.ca for a list of resources.
In case of an emergency, call 911.