Supporting Young Men’s Mental Health

Available with English captions.

Despite the progress that’s been made in talking about and addressing mental health, stigma still remains—especially in young male populations. For many teen boys and young men, it can be difficult for them to express how they’re feeling or admit that they have been struggling with mental health. Despite efforts being made around freedom of emotional expression, many boys still feel pressured to put on a brave face and pretend things are all okay.

So how do we get our loved ones the support they need if they’re not expressing it? How can caretakers encourage their sons who may be struggling to open up?

Audience Questions

Dr. Byron Garcia shares ways to create safe spaces for self-expression, explains the signs and symptoms of common mental health conditions in young men and boys, and answers questions about how to encourage male teens and young adults to seek treatment if it’s needed.

  • What is important for us to know about men’s mental health?
  • How do differences in gender expectations interfere with our ability to accurately evaluate if a young person is struggling?
  • How can the average person determine whether a behavior in a young man is typical or problematic?
  • Can you elaborate on how certain behaviors in young men may be a result of an inability to cope or express their emotions effectively?
  • Are there behaviors that we as a society accept in young women but do not accept in young men? Or the other way around?
  • How do you suggest providers, educators, or administrators approach the topic of validation and accepting young people for who they are with a parent?
  • How common is it for young men to struggle with depression, anxiety, and other conditions?
  • Can you tell us about conditions that may present differently in young men versus young women?
  • What are important things for teachers and parents to look out for that may indicate that a young person is struggling?
  • Do you have any tips for parents, educators, or providers who are attempting to reach a young man who is closed-off?
  • Can you speak to the impact of stress on young people and the pressure that they experience?
  • In most places, and for most families, DBT is inaccessible. How can schools, communities, and caregivers help young people effectively express their emotions?
  • When a young person is having an angry outburst, what can a lay person do to help this young person put into words what they are feeling?

About Dr. Garcia

Byron Garcia, MD, is a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist who specializes in the care of adolescents and young adults with mood and anxiety disorders, OCD, and ADHD. As the medical director at the 3East Boys Intensive Program, his goal is to implement an effective treatment for his patients to resolve or significantly reduce their symptoms.

Dr. Garcia has a vast background in clinical, administrative, and teaching responsibilities. He is an expert in medication management, with 23 years of experience. Dr. Garcia has lectured on treating Latin-American patients with psychiatric illnesses.

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It’s important to think about ways to manage your mental health. McLean is committed to providing mental health and self-care resources for all who may need them. You and your family may find these strategies from McLean experts helpful to feel mentally balanced in your everyday lives.

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