Men aren’t talking, but they need to. We need to enter the cave of man’s mind and encourage him to talk. Words flow when we listen well.
It was early in the morning, and I was driving to the first job of the day. The day was starting dark, cold, and wet, and I was listening to the radio when I heard a deep and serious voice come to my ears.
Men need help for their Mental Health but have reasons why they avoid counseling and therapy. We need to understand men and the obstacles they face so they can get the help they need.
When I suggested he go to see a counselor to get some help with his anger, I could see the walls go up.
It wasn’t just his anger, that was simply a symptom of something more profound, a pot boiling over because he didn’t know how to turn the heat down. No, there were struggles that with all the will power he could muster, he still couldn’t change.
So he lived a false life.
A fine veneer on the outside but cheap rotting chipboard under the surface.
He’s lived this way for over fifty years now, and he probably will for the next.
As you read this post, someone somewhere will be typing in to the Google search ‘I want to die.’ But what are they truly searching for? I believe it is a connection and a simple plan to get out of the hole.
Overwhelming emotions can take you to where you want to die. It’s what happens when it all becomes too much for us mere humans to handle, and so we pray, ‘God, I want to die.’
The other day, I watched a news reporter standing in a stream swollen with water from a recent storm. Water was rushing down against his legs, and he talked about the overwhelming power of the current.
Many people die when their footing is lost to the overwhelming power of simple small water droplets joined together.
The shame of an attempt at suicide can cling onto you like the odor of some dirty old socks. You would do anything to get rid of that stench. Is that a good description of shame?
That feeling of embarrassment at what you have done. You want to hide, run, cover it up, but it’s still there. Those smelly old socks still stink.
Recently I was asked a question by one of the readers of Turning the Page about how to help someone who had recently attempted suicide. In the midst of their crisis, they had posted their intentions out on Social Media. Now they had a deep sense of shame and embarrassment. They feared that people would treat them differently.
It is one of those memories that is special to me. I was very unwell as a child with eczema and asthma. My parents asked if our pastor and a few others could come and pray for me.
They were following the advice we find in James 5:14. We had communion together and then they put some oil on my forehead and asked God to heal my illnesses. [pullquote]Are you sick? Call the church leaders together to pray and anoint you with oil in the name of the Master. James 5:14[/pullquote]
I wouldn’t say there was any miraculous instantaneous healing. No thunderous change took place, but I knew that I was not alone and that some godly men and women loved me and prayed for me.
Fatigue seems to sap out any reserve you might have to go on.
I remember visiting him in the Intensive Care Unit in our local hospital. After a huge overdose of pills he had woken up to discover he was still alive. His attempt at suicide had not succeeded.
His story was not unfamiliar. He had battled his addiction for years. Day after day. Then it got the better of him, and when his whole world crashed around him he decided to crash out of it. [pullquote]Beneath what our culture calls psychological disorder is a soul crying for what only community can provide. Larry Crabb[/pullquote]
This was years ago, but just the other day he shared with me his excitement at the news of becoming a grandfather.
Wonderful I thought, it was worth all the struggle of rebuild for the joy set before him of holding a new born baby in his arms.
Often I travel over some sharp twisty roads. One of these roads has a large hill, and just on the other side, there is a beautiful view with a fence that has been driven through. The driver didn’t take notice of the early warning signs.
There are signs to tell drivers to slow down, but for this driver, the signs were ignored, boundaries were crossed and lives put in danger.
Suicidal thoughts, feelings, and a desire to die can become overwhelmingly strong. But you can help people to move through this. You can learn how to help.
They reach out to you for help.
You have noticed your best friend, family member, or workmate being more withdrawn than usual. They have had a huge disappointment recently, a redundancy, a relationship breakdown, and even though on the outside they seem fine, you sense that something is not quite right.