Discussing Mental Health for Dads
Updated: Nov 9, 2020
Fathers are the pillars of strength that help their children face every obstacle in life with confidence. They are the strong shoulders that are always ready to catch them when they fall. It’s important to remember that men face mental health challenges just like everyone else, and as men move into a Father’s role in life, these mental health challenges can change.
Unlike the verbal and physical affection mothers express, a father’s love language is often seen in their actions. From making sure there is warm food on the table to buying you that expensive pair of shoes before purchasing anything for themselves, the actions of a father speak much louder than their words.
Managing New Changes
The start of traditional family life and the arrival of children is just as life-altering for the dad as it is for the mum. This change is often met by dads with confusion and even sadness. While women are connected to their children even before they are born, the dad-child bonding forms much later on.
New dads can often feel stressed about changes in their lifestyle and the increasing pressure to provide. However, unlike new moms who are put on a pedestal and praised for their strength, a father’s resilience often goes unnoticed.
The Storm is Brewing
Dads can easily fall prey to anger management issues and even depression as they move into new roles and duties in their lives. Matters are hampered further by most men’s inherent difficulty in admitting their weaknesses or worries.
Wives, who are often absorbed with being mums, often miss the signs. Amid the chaos that is raising children, these negative emotions brew stronger, desperately in need of an outlet. Unchecked, these emotions often translate into seemingly random outbursts and may even result in unintended violence. So difficult it is for them to acknowledge their own emotions that their children often mistake the lack of expression as an absence of love itself.
Acknowledging the Problem
Silence, however golden, is not the answer. The first step to effective recovery is by accepting there is a problem. Men who think that their stress has grown to the point where it affects their daily routine should seek support and guidance.
The easiest and most intimate confidante is the wife, who understands the situation he is in as best as anyone else. Therapy can also be sought by men, who can benefit from the guidance of professionals.
Road to Recovery
Spending time with the children can bridge the gap in communication and expression. Encourage open and honest conversations that do not need the mom to work as a mediator. Enjoying wholesome quality time with the kids can help fathers feel more involved and less of an outsider. They should also expend their energy by working out and rejuvenate by eating healthy, these activities can be enjoy with their kids as a form of parental bonding. The release of endorphins will make them feel more relaxed and happier.
An emotionally mature parent can deal with the problems their children face by listening intently and acting effectively. Remember, crying is not a sign of weakness. Since birth, it has been a sign that you are alive. If fathers can express emotions such as anger and euphoria, they should have no problem expressing pride, sadness, and even empathy. Mothers might be more celebrated by media outlets and music, but to the children, both their parents are equally important and loved.
Counselling and Wellbeing Centre offers a range of therapy sessions that would help you relieve stress and live a happy life. You can call us at (07) 3891 2273 to find more information or to schedule an appointment.