In recent time I have noticed the increase in posts addressing the high rate of suicides amongst men.
Apparently, men are three times more likely to commit suicide. In UK 75% suicides are among men. Women are more likely to participate in parasuicides, the trend that is stationary. More women than men attempt suicide but many more men are successful.
The campaigns such as Movember also targets men when it comes to preventing the suicide.
One of the videos on their website send the clear messages: “talking saves live” and “to be a man of less anxiety I had to be a man of more words". In other words, silence is a silent killer.
It is not!
There is a paradox.
Women are those who are considered to be masters at suffering in silence, enduring enormous social expectation and fulfilling various roles according to social, political, economical, legal and religious expectations.
Men, on the other hand, are famous for “throwing they dummy out of the pram" when challenged. They tend to kick out quicker when they don’t get their ways. Superficially civilised, but yet scratch the surface and see what underneath.
Masculinity and structures of power have been overlooked when addressing the successful suicide rate in men.
Ultimately, challenging gender inequality may be a feasible preventive solution for a social problems.
Men die through suicides committed by using violent methods. Such acts are in line with masculinity construct and gendered identities. They are in denial of pain and emotional sensitivity, anxieties and insecurities.
It is important to encourage alternative masculinities that promote healthy behaviour and cognition, even if seen as “different “ and in minority.
More broadly, masculinity not only have negative consequences for men but also it promotes subordination of women.
Subordination that systematically spread across the economical, legal, political and social dimensions.
Subordination of women had lead to publication of “Second Sex" by Somone de Beauvoir in 1949.
Current climate indicates not much has improved and social media keep us well informed of the extreme crimes committed against women.
Recent report of women found dead in “Period hut" in Nepal, rapes, domestic violence across the globe, period badges in Japan are just few examples.
Quiet and submissive females are striped of their dignity and privacy in a name of expectation, cultural norms. It is effective method of silencing them, too. It hampers woman's progress of getting to know her own mind and body and to be aware of the limitations and affects. And to equip herself with powers to experience life on her own terms. We are expected to fit into environment instead of design environment to fit around our individual needs and desires.
Religions are patriarchal at heart: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
Traditional values justify the atrocities.
Social norms have direct detrimental effect on women, they also affect men.
How can we emancipate ourselves from those constraing roles?
Simple way is to understand that "woman is not born but made". Emancipating from being a "woman" is required. Freedom from internalisating those feelings and norms as innate.
Challenge the conventional ideas that speak of us in biological terms and that our capacities belong to one sex or the other.
Challenge the mainstream institutions and practices where these ideas are structurally embedded STILL in 21st century.
Making accessible resources and places to those who are poorer and marginalised.
I have noticed reports of teachers expressing their disappointment with system.
Teaching role along with other stereotypically female care roles such as nursing, childcare, elderly care have been paid badly due to it’s being associated with something women do naturally.
It has resulted in a unequal society when women are facing low pay and the pay gap between women and men prevail.
Office for National Statistics have reported that women do, on average, double unpaid work when it comes to cooking, childcare, and household.
Women play different roles in society. Experience that is difficult and leaves them confused.
Bluntly speaking, women are suffering in silence.
We don’t complain enough.
We are expected to manage because of social expectation.
We are doing gender by participating in socially guided activities.
In order to succeed at fairer society we must actively challenge the system of power.
Every country has it's own schemes of "promoting" gender inequality. It just adapts different forms. Bigger picture and wider context helps me understand the underlying problem.
Frustration isn't sensitive. It screams! To surprise of many, we, women, have balls, too! We demand fair rights, and not to be treated like eggs with prerogatives.
Various legal acts that have been introduced, so far, evidently are not adhered to. This includes the Equality Act 2010, Anti Discrimination Act: Equal Pay Act 1970 and Sex Discrimination Act 1976, Disability Discrimination Act 1995.
Protected characteristics : age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race and religion or beliefs, sex and sexual orientation. For some reason, being single is less valid than being married. Even if, we know, for the fact, that singletons have been discriminated in our society, too.
The emerging properties that arise through interaction are: the perceived feeling of fear, aggression, threat; and consciousness.
The negative feelings prevent us from building healthy relationships and living in more coherent society.
It leads to social segregation and mental health problems.
Minimising the major barriers: threat, fear, aggression and bringing it down to the acceptable level, is crucial in our pursuit of a better society.