What Men Really Think About Mental Health Stigma

There's nothing emasculating about sharing your feelings.

Talking about mental health is the first step to eliminating the negative stereotype around it -- but for men, this can be particularly challenging.

Approximately 6 million American men have depression each year, yet research shows many are reluctant to disclose their mental illness symptoms and are averse to seeking treatment. This is a dangerous trend considering mental health issues have the potential to lead to suicide -- an act that results in more than 40,000 deaths in the United States each year.

As part of our ShameOver men's mental health initiative, we asked several men to share their stories about depression, anxiety and mental illness stigma. Their answers are an honest insight into what it's really like to deal with mental health issues in a society where "being a man" is equated with "being tough" -- and "being tough" is equated with being silent.

Take a look at their stories in the video above -- because there's nothing emasculating about sharing your feelings.

This post is part of ShameOver: It's Time To Talk About Men's Mental Health, a HuffPost Healthy Living editorial initiative that aims reclaim what it means to "be strong" by addressing the stigma men face in disclosing and seeking support for mental health issues. Each week we'll share features and personal stories about men and their caregivers as it relates to suicide, mental illness and emotional well-being. If you have a story you'd like to share, email us at strongertogether@huffingtonpost.com.

If you -- or someone you know -- need help, please call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. If you are outside of the U.S., please visit the International Association for Suicide Prevention for a database of international resources.

Also on HuffPost:

11 Quotes That Perfectly Sum Up The Stigma Surrounding Mental Illness

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