When life gets hard, or when you’re confronted with shame, or when you need to get something off your chest, or when you’re seeking advice or a shoulder to cry on, do you have a friend to call?
Depression and loneliness often go hand in hand. And, let’s be real, a lot of men are lonely.
In an article on the Good Men Project called “Why Do We Murder the Beautiful Friendships of Boys?” Mark Greene says, “Millions of men are experiencing a sense of deep loss that haunts them even though they are engaged in fully realized romantic relationships, marriages, and families.”
Surely, our culture’s toxic homophobia, fear of male intimacy, and wrongful definition of masculinity contribute to the silent epidemic of depression, anxiety, loneliness, and suicide among men. But, friendship isn’t just a woman’s game. Men are literally dying to have companionship. They might not even realize it.
Thankfully, The Movember Foundation recognized this issue and deemed May, the 8th as MAYEIGHT, “The Date To Catch Up With A Mate.”
What does this mean?
First of all, this means that in addition to celebrating Star Wars, Justin Timberlake, and Cinco De Mayo in May, we can now celebrate male friendships and proactive initiatives against depression, anxiety, mental illness, and loneliness.
Secondly, this means you should definitely-100%-for-sure-certainly go on a date with a mate! Show your buds some love. Grab a coffee together, go out to lunch, chat over a pint at the local pub, give a pal a call, do an activity together, or at least send a text, thanking them for their friendship and brotherhood.
Ask big questions and listen more than you talk.
Laugh, cry, or sit in silence.
Be you, cherishing the words of William Shakespeare: