Young Men, Help-Seeking, and Mental Health Services: Exploring Barriers and Solutions

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

International research has identified young men as reluctant to seek help for mental health problems. This research explored barriers and solutions to professional help seeking for mental health problems among young men living in the North West of Ireland. A qualitative approach, using two focus groups with six participants each and five face-to-face interviews, was conducted with men aged 18 to 24 years (total N = 17). Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Seven key themes of barriers to professional help seeking were identified: “acceptance from peers,” “personal challenges,” “cultural and environmental influences,” “self-medicating with alcohol,” “perspectives around seeking professional help,” “fear of homophobic responses,” and “traditional masculine ideals.” Five key themes of solutions to these barriers included “tailored mental health advertising,” “integrating mental health into formal education,” “education through semi-formal support services,” “accessible mental health care,” and “making new meaning.” Interesting findings on barriers include fear of psychiatric medication, fear of homophobic responses from professionals, the legacy of Catholic attitudes, and the genuine need for care. This study offers an in-depth exploration of how young men experience barriers and uniquely offers solutions identified by participants themselves. Youth work settings were identified as a resource for engaging young men in mental health work. Young men can be encouragedto seek help if services and professionals actively address barriers, combining advertising, services, and education, with particular attention and respect to how and when young men seek help and with whom they want to share their problems.
LanguageEnglish
Pages1-12
JournalAmerican Journal of Men's Health
Volumen/a
Early online date29 Jun 2016
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Jun 2016

Fingerprint

Mental Health Services
health service
mental health
Mental Health
Fear
anxiety
Education
youth work
need for care
education
Focus Groups
Ireland
Research
Psychiatry
respect
medication
acceptance
alcohol
Alcohols
Interviews

Keywords

  • help seeking
  • mental health
  • young men
  • qualitative research

Cite this

@article{af2318dc65954b769faa9862b7899779,
title = "Young Men, Help-Seeking, and Mental Health Services: Exploring Barriers and Solutions",
abstract = "International research has identified young men as reluctant to seek help for mental health problems. This research explored barriers and solutions to professional help seeking for mental health problems among young men living in the North West of Ireland. A qualitative approach, using two focus groups with six participants each and five face-to-face interviews, was conducted with men aged 18 to 24 years (total N = 17). Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Seven key themes of barriers to professional help seeking were identified: “acceptance from peers,” “personal challenges,” “cultural and environmental influences,” “self-medicating with alcohol,” “perspectives around seeking professional help,” “fear of homophobic responses,” and “traditional masculine ideals.” Five key themes of solutions to these barriers included “tailored mental health advertising,” “integrating mental health into formal education,” “education through semi-formal support services,” “accessible mental health care,” and “making new meaning.” Interesting findings on barriers include fear of psychiatric medication, fear of homophobic responses from professionals, the legacy of Catholic attitudes, and the genuine need for care. This study offers an in-depth exploration of how young men experience barriers and uniquely offers solutions identified by participants themselves. Youth work settings were identified as a resource for engaging young men in mental health work. Young men can be encouragedto seek help if services and professionals actively address barriers, combining advertising, services, and education, with particular attention and respect to how and when young men seek help and with whom they want to share their problems.",
keywords = "help seeking, mental health, young men, qualitative research",
author = "Louise Lynch and Maggie Long and Anne Moorhead",
note = "Reference text: Barbour, R. S., & Barbour, M. (2003). Evaluating and synthesizing qualitative research: The need to develop a distinctive approach. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, 9, 179-186. Barney, L. J., Griffiths, K. M., Jorm, A. F., & Christensen, H. (2006). Stigma about depression and its impact on help‐seeking intentions. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 40, 51-54. Begley, M., Chambers, D., Corcoran, P., & Gallagher, J. (2003). The male perspective: Young men’s outlook on life. Retrieved from http://nsrf.ie/wp-content/uploads/reports/ YoungMensStudy.pdf Biddle, L., Donovan, J., Sharp, D., & Gunnell, D. (2007). Explaining non‐help‐seeking amongst young adults with mental distress: A dynamic interpretive model of illness behaviour. Sociology of Health & Illness, 29, 983-1002. Biddle, L., Gunnell, D., Sharp, D., & Donovan, J. L. (2004). Factors influencing help seeking in mentally distressed young adults: A cross-sectional survey. British Journal of General Practice, 54, 248-253. Booth, M. L., Bernard, D., Quine, S., Kang, M. S., Usherwood, T., Alperstein, G., & Bennett, D. L. (2004). Access to health care among Australian adolescents: Young people’s perspectives and their sociodemographic distribution. Journal of Adolescent Health, 34, 97-103. Bradford, S., & Rickwood, D. (2014). Adolescent’s preferred modes of delivery for mental health services. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 19, 39-45. Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3, 77-101. Brooks, G. R. (2001). Masculinity and men’s mental health. Journal of American College Health, 49, 285-297. Bryman, A. (2012). Social research methods. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. Carson, D., Gilmore, A., Perry, C., & Gronhaug, K. (Eds.). (2001). Qualitative marketing research. London, England: Sage. Chan, M. E. (2013). Antecedents of instrumental interpersonal help‐seeking: An integrative review. Applied Psychology, 62, 571-596. Cleary, A. (2012). Suicidal action, emotional expression, and the performance of masculinities. Social Science & Medicine, 74, 498-505. Clement, S., Schauman, O., Graham, T., Maggioni, F., Evans-Lacko, S., Bezborodovs, N., . . . Thornicroft, G. (2015). What is the impact of mental-health related stigma on help-seeking? A systematic review of quantitative and qualitative studies. Psychological Medicine, 45, 11-27. Cornally, N., & McCarthy, G. (2011). Help‐seeking behaviour: A concept analysis. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 17, 280-288. Creswell, J. W., & Miller, D. L. (2000). Determining validity in qualitative inquiry. Theory Into Practice, 39, 124-130. Department of Education and Skills. (2013). Diversity of patronage. Retrieved from https://www.education.ie/ en/Schools-Colleges/Information/Diversity-of-Patronage/ Diversity-of-Patronage-Survey-of-Parents.html Golafshani, N. (2003). Understanding reliability and validity in qualitative research. Qualitative Report, 8, 597-607. Gonzalez, J. M., Alegria, M., & Prihoda, T. J. (2005). How do attitudes toward mental health treatment vary by age, gender, and ethnicity/race in young adults? Journal of Community Psychology, 33, 611-629. Gulliver, A., Griffiths, K. M., & Christensen, H. (2010). Perceived barriers and facilitators to mental health help-seeking in young people: A systematic review. BMC Psychiatry, 10(1), 113. Hernan, A., Philpot, B., Edmonds, A., & Reddy, P. (2010). Healthy minds for country youth: Help‐seeking for depression among rural adolescents. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 18, 118-124. Hogg, M. A., & Turner, J. C. (1987). Intergroup behaviour, self‐stereotyping and the salience of social categories. British Journal of Social Psychology, 26, 325-340. Jackson, S. F., Perkins, F., Khandor, E., Cordwell, L., Hamann, S., & Buasai, S. (2006). Integrated health promotion strategies: A contribution to tackling current and future health challenges. Health Promotion International, 21(Suppl. 1), 75-83. Johnson, J. L., Oliffe, J. L., Kelly, M. T., Galdas, P., & Ogrodniczuk, J. S. (2012). Men’s discourses of help‐seeking in the context of depression. Sociology of Health & Illness, 34, 345-361. Jordan, J., McKenna, H., Keeney, S., Cutcliffe, J., Stevenson, C., Slater, P., & McGowan, I. (2012). Providing meaningful care learning from the experiences of suicidal young men. Qualitative Health Research, 22, 1207-1219. Jorm, A. F. (2000). Mental health literacy: Public knowledge and beliefs about mental disorders. British Journal of Psychiatry, 177, 396-401. Judd, F., Jackson, H., Komiti, A., Murray, G., Fraser, C., Grieve, A., & Gomez, R. (2006). Help‐seeking by rural residents for mental health problems: The importance of agrarian values. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 40, 769-776. Kelly, C. M., Jorm, A. F., & Wright, A. (2007). Improving mental health literacy as a strategy to facilitate early intervention for mental disorders. Medical Journal of Australia, 187(7 Suppl.), S26-S30. Klineberg, E., Biddle, L., Donovan, J., & Gunnell, D. (2011). Symptom recognition and help seeking for depression in young adults: A vignette study. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 46, 495-505. Lally, J., O’Conghaile, A., Quigley, S., Bainbridge, E., & McDonald, C. (2013). Stigma of mental illness and help-seeking intention in university students. The Psychiatrist, 37, 253-260. Latalova, K., Kamaradova, D., & Prasko, J. (2014). Perspectives on perceived stigma and self-stigma in adult male patients with depression. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 10, 1399-1405. Leavey, G., Hollins, K., King, M., Barnes, J., Papadopoulos, C., & Grayson, K. (2004). Psychological disorder amongst refugee and migrant schoolchildren in London. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 39, 191-195. Litosseliti, L. (2003). Using focus groups in research. London, England: A&C Black. Mackenzie, C. S., Gekoski, W. L., & Knox, V. J. (2006). Age, gender, and the underutilization of mental health services: The influence of help-seeking attitudes. Aging & Mental Health, 10, 574-582. Maher, M. J. (2013). Homophobic bullying in Catholic high schools: Five US studies in heterosexism, authority, masculinity, and religion, In Z. Gross, L. Davies, & A. Diab (Eds.), Gender, religion and education in a chaotic postmodern world (pp. 271-284). Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. M{\"o}ller-Leimk{\"u}hler, A. M. (2003). The gender gap in suicide and premature death or: Why are men so vulnerable? European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience, 253, 1-8. Nam, S. K., Chu, H. J., Lee, M. K., Lee, J. H., Kim, N., & Lee, S. M. (2010). A meta-analysis of gender differences in attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help. Journal of American College Health, 59, 110-116. National Office of Suicide Prevention. (2013). Annual report 2012. Retrieved from http://www.nosp.ie Oliffe, J. L., Ogrodniczuk, J. S., Bottorff, J. L., Johnson, J. L., & Hoyak, K. (2012). “You feel like you can’t live anymore”: Suicide from the perspectives of Canadian men who experience depression. Social Science & Medicine, 74, 506-514. Oliver, M. I., Pearson, N., Coe, N., & Gunnell, D. (2005). Help-seeking behaviour in men and women with common mental health problems: Cross-sectional study. British Journal of Psychiatry, 186, 297-301. Richardson, N., Clarke, N., & Fowler, C. (2013). A report on the all-Ireland young men and suicide project. Dublin, Ireland: Men’s Health Forum in Ireland. Rickwood, D., Deane, F. P., & Wilson, C. J. (2007). When and how do young people seek professional help for mental health problems? Medical Journal of Australia, 187, S35-S39. Rickwood, D., Deane, F. P., Wilson, C. J., & Ciarrochi, J. (2005). Young people’s help-seeking for mental health problems. Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health, 4, 218-251. Roth{\`i}, D. M., & Leavey, G. (2006). Mental health help-seeking and young people: A review. Pastoral Care in Education, 24(3), 4-13. Rughani, J., Deane, F. P., & Wilson, C. J. (2011). Rural adolescents’ help‐seeking intentions for emotional problems: The influence of perceived benefits and stoicism. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 19, 64-69. Segal, D. L., Coolidge, F. L., Mincic, M. S., & O’Riley, A. (2005). Beliefs about mental illness and willingness to seek help: A cross-sectional study. Aging & Mental Health, 9, 363-367. Tajfel, H., & Turner, J. C. (2004). The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In J. T. Jost & J. Sidanjus (Eds.), Political psychology: Key readings in social psychology (pp. 276-293). New York, NY: Psychology Press. Vogel, D. L., Heimerdinger-Edwards, S. R., Hammer, J. H., & Hubbard, A. (2011). “Boys don’t cry”: Examination of the links between endorsement of masculine norms, self-stigma, and help-seeking attitudes for men from diverse backgrounds. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 58, 368-382. Vogel, D. L., Wade, N. G., Wester, S. R., Larson, L., & Hackler, A. H. (2007). Seeking help from a mental health professional: The influence of one’s social network. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 63, 233-245. Wilson, C. J., & Deane, F. P. (2001). Adolescent opinions about reducing help-seeking barriers and increasing appropriate help engagement. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 12, 345-364.",
year = "2016",
month = "6",
day = "29",
doi = "10.1177/1557988315619469",
language = "English",
volume = "n/a",
pages = "1--12",
journal = "American Journal of Men's Health",
issn = "1557-9883",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Young Men, Help-Seeking, and Mental Health Services: Exploring Barriers and Solutions

AU - Lynch, Louise

AU - Long, Maggie

AU - Moorhead, Anne

N1 - Reference text: Barbour, R. S., & Barbour, M. (2003). Evaluating and synthesizing qualitative research: The need to develop a distinctive approach. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, 9, 179-186. Barney, L. J., Griffiths, K. M., Jorm, A. F., & Christensen, H. (2006). Stigma about depression and its impact on help‐seeking intentions. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 40, 51-54. Begley, M., Chambers, D., Corcoran, P., & Gallagher, J. (2003). The male perspective: Young men’s outlook on life. Retrieved from http://nsrf.ie/wp-content/uploads/reports/ YoungMensStudy.pdf Biddle, L., Donovan, J., Sharp, D., & Gunnell, D. (2007). Explaining non‐help‐seeking amongst young adults with mental distress: A dynamic interpretive model of illness behaviour. Sociology of Health & Illness, 29, 983-1002. Biddle, L., Gunnell, D., Sharp, D., & Donovan, J. L. (2004). Factors influencing help seeking in mentally distressed young adults: A cross-sectional survey. British Journal of General Practice, 54, 248-253. Booth, M. L., Bernard, D., Quine, S., Kang, M. S., Usherwood, T., Alperstein, G., & Bennett, D. L. (2004). Access to health care among Australian adolescents: Young people’s perspectives and their sociodemographic distribution. Journal of Adolescent Health, 34, 97-103. Bradford, S., & Rickwood, D. (2014). Adolescent’s preferred modes of delivery for mental health services. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 19, 39-45. Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3, 77-101. Brooks, G. R. (2001). Masculinity and men’s mental health. Journal of American College Health, 49, 285-297. Bryman, A. (2012). Social research methods. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. Carson, D., Gilmore, A., Perry, C., & Gronhaug, K. (Eds.). (2001). Qualitative marketing research. London, England: Sage. Chan, M. E. (2013). Antecedents of instrumental interpersonal help‐seeking: An integrative review. Applied Psychology, 62, 571-596. Cleary, A. (2012). Suicidal action, emotional expression, and the performance of masculinities. Social Science & Medicine, 74, 498-505. Clement, S., Schauman, O., Graham, T., Maggioni, F., Evans-Lacko, S., Bezborodovs, N., . . . Thornicroft, G. (2015). What is the impact of mental-health related stigma on help-seeking? A systematic review of quantitative and qualitative studies. Psychological Medicine, 45, 11-27. Cornally, N., & McCarthy, G. (2011). Help‐seeking behaviour: A concept analysis. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 17, 280-288. Creswell, J. W., & Miller, D. L. (2000). Determining validity in qualitative inquiry. Theory Into Practice, 39, 124-130. Department of Education and Skills. (2013). Diversity of patronage. Retrieved from https://www.education.ie/ en/Schools-Colleges/Information/Diversity-of-Patronage/ Diversity-of-Patronage-Survey-of-Parents.html Golafshani, N. (2003). Understanding reliability and validity in qualitative research. Qualitative Report, 8, 597-607. Gonzalez, J. M., Alegria, M., & Prihoda, T. J. (2005). How do attitudes toward mental health treatment vary by age, gender, and ethnicity/race in young adults? Journal of Community Psychology, 33, 611-629. Gulliver, A., Griffiths, K. M., & Christensen, H. (2010). Perceived barriers and facilitators to mental health help-seeking in young people: A systematic review. BMC Psychiatry, 10(1), 113. Hernan, A., Philpot, B., Edmonds, A., & Reddy, P. (2010). Healthy minds for country youth: Help‐seeking for depression among rural adolescents. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 18, 118-124. Hogg, M. A., & Turner, J. C. (1987). Intergroup behaviour, self‐stereotyping and the salience of social categories. British Journal of Social Psychology, 26, 325-340. Jackson, S. F., Perkins, F., Khandor, E., Cordwell, L., Hamann, S., & Buasai, S. (2006). Integrated health promotion strategies: A contribution to tackling current and future health challenges. Health Promotion International, 21(Suppl. 1), 75-83. Johnson, J. L., Oliffe, J. L., Kelly, M. T., Galdas, P., & Ogrodniczuk, J. S. (2012). Men’s discourses of help‐seeking in the context of depression. Sociology of Health & Illness, 34, 345-361. Jordan, J., McKenna, H., Keeney, S., Cutcliffe, J., Stevenson, C., Slater, P., & McGowan, I. (2012). Providing meaningful care learning from the experiences of suicidal young men. Qualitative Health Research, 22, 1207-1219. Jorm, A. F. (2000). Mental health literacy: Public knowledge and beliefs about mental disorders. British Journal of Psychiatry, 177, 396-401. Judd, F., Jackson, H., Komiti, A., Murray, G., Fraser, C., Grieve, A., & Gomez, R. (2006). Help‐seeking by rural residents for mental health problems: The importance of agrarian values. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 40, 769-776. Kelly, C. M., Jorm, A. F., & Wright, A. (2007). Improving mental health literacy as a strategy to facilitate early intervention for mental disorders. Medical Journal of Australia, 187(7 Suppl.), S26-S30. Klineberg, E., Biddle, L., Donovan, J., & Gunnell, D. (2011). Symptom recognition and help seeking for depression in young adults: A vignette study. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 46, 495-505. Lally, J., O’Conghaile, A., Quigley, S., Bainbridge, E., & McDonald, C. (2013). Stigma of mental illness and help-seeking intention in university students. The Psychiatrist, 37, 253-260. Latalova, K., Kamaradova, D., & Prasko, J. (2014). Perspectives on perceived stigma and self-stigma in adult male patients with depression. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 10, 1399-1405. Leavey, G., Hollins, K., King, M., Barnes, J., Papadopoulos, C., & Grayson, K. (2004). Psychological disorder amongst refugee and migrant schoolchildren in London. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 39, 191-195. Litosseliti, L. (2003). Using focus groups in research. London, England: A&C Black. Mackenzie, C. S., Gekoski, W. L., & Knox, V. J. (2006). Age, gender, and the underutilization of mental health services: The influence of help-seeking attitudes. Aging & Mental Health, 10, 574-582. Maher, M. J. (2013). Homophobic bullying in Catholic high schools: Five US studies in heterosexism, authority, masculinity, and religion, In Z. Gross, L. Davies, & A. Diab (Eds.), Gender, religion and education in a chaotic postmodern world (pp. 271-284). Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. Möller-Leimkühler, A. M. (2003). The gender gap in suicide and premature death or: Why are men so vulnerable? European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience, 253, 1-8. Nam, S. K., Chu, H. J., Lee, M. K., Lee, J. H., Kim, N., & Lee, S. M. (2010). A meta-analysis of gender differences in attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help. Journal of American College Health, 59, 110-116. National Office of Suicide Prevention. (2013). Annual report 2012. Retrieved from http://www.nosp.ie Oliffe, J. L., Ogrodniczuk, J. S., Bottorff, J. L., Johnson, J. L., & Hoyak, K. (2012). “You feel like you can’t live anymore”: Suicide from the perspectives of Canadian men who experience depression. Social Science & Medicine, 74, 506-514. Oliver, M. I., Pearson, N., Coe, N., & Gunnell, D. (2005). Help-seeking behaviour in men and women with common mental health problems: Cross-sectional study. British Journal of Psychiatry, 186, 297-301. Richardson, N., Clarke, N., & Fowler, C. (2013). A report on the all-Ireland young men and suicide project. Dublin, Ireland: Men’s Health Forum in Ireland. Rickwood, D., Deane, F. P., & Wilson, C. J. (2007). When and how do young people seek professional help for mental health problems? Medical Journal of Australia, 187, S35-S39. Rickwood, D., Deane, F. P., Wilson, C. J., & Ciarrochi, J. (2005). Young people’s help-seeking for mental health problems. Australian e-Journal for the Advancement of Mental Health, 4, 218-251. Rothì, D. M., & Leavey, G. (2006). Mental health help-seeking and young people: A review. Pastoral Care in Education, 24(3), 4-13. Rughani, J., Deane, F. P., & Wilson, C. J. (2011). Rural adolescents’ help‐seeking intentions for emotional problems: The influence of perceived benefits and stoicism. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 19, 64-69. Segal, D. L., Coolidge, F. L., Mincic, M. S., & O’Riley, A. (2005). Beliefs about mental illness and willingness to seek help: A cross-sectional study. Aging & Mental Health, 9, 363-367. Tajfel, H., & Turner, J. C. (2004). The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In J. T. Jost & J. Sidanjus (Eds.), Political psychology: Key readings in social psychology (pp. 276-293). New York, NY: Psychology Press. Vogel, D. L., Heimerdinger-Edwards, S. R., Hammer, J. H., & Hubbard, A. (2011). “Boys don’t cry”: Examination of the links between endorsement of masculine norms, self-stigma, and help-seeking attitudes for men from diverse backgrounds. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 58, 368-382. Vogel, D. L., Wade, N. G., Wester, S. R., Larson, L., & Hackler, A. H. (2007). Seeking help from a mental health professional: The influence of one’s social network. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 63, 233-245. Wilson, C. J., & Deane, F. P. (2001). Adolescent opinions about reducing help-seeking barriers and increasing appropriate help engagement. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 12, 345-364.

PY - 2016/6/29

Y1 - 2016/6/29

N2 - International research has identified young men as reluctant to seek help for mental health problems. This research explored barriers and solutions to professional help seeking for mental health problems among young men living in the North West of Ireland. A qualitative approach, using two focus groups with six participants each and five face-to-face interviews, was conducted with men aged 18 to 24 years (total N = 17). Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Seven key themes of barriers to professional help seeking were identified: “acceptance from peers,” “personal challenges,” “cultural and environmental influences,” “self-medicating with alcohol,” “perspectives around seeking professional help,” “fear of homophobic responses,” and “traditional masculine ideals.” Five key themes of solutions to these barriers included “tailored mental health advertising,” “integrating mental health into formal education,” “education through semi-formal support services,” “accessible mental health care,” and “making new meaning.” Interesting findings on barriers include fear of psychiatric medication, fear of homophobic responses from professionals, the legacy of Catholic attitudes, and the genuine need for care. This study offers an in-depth exploration of how young men experience barriers and uniquely offers solutions identified by participants themselves. Youth work settings were identified as a resource for engaging young men in mental health work. Young men can be encouragedto seek help if services and professionals actively address barriers, combining advertising, services, and education, with particular attention and respect to how and when young men seek help and with whom they want to share their problems.

AB - International research has identified young men as reluctant to seek help for mental health problems. This research explored barriers and solutions to professional help seeking for mental health problems among young men living in the North West of Ireland. A qualitative approach, using two focus groups with six participants each and five face-to-face interviews, was conducted with men aged 18 to 24 years (total N = 17). Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Seven key themes of barriers to professional help seeking were identified: “acceptance from peers,” “personal challenges,” “cultural and environmental influences,” “self-medicating with alcohol,” “perspectives around seeking professional help,” “fear of homophobic responses,” and “traditional masculine ideals.” Five key themes of solutions to these barriers included “tailored mental health advertising,” “integrating mental health into formal education,” “education through semi-formal support services,” “accessible mental health care,” and “making new meaning.” Interesting findings on barriers include fear of psychiatric medication, fear of homophobic responses from professionals, the legacy of Catholic attitudes, and the genuine need for care. This study offers an in-depth exploration of how young men experience barriers and uniquely offers solutions identified by participants themselves. Youth work settings were identified as a resource for engaging young men in mental health work. Young men can be encouragedto seek help if services and professionals actively address barriers, combining advertising, services, and education, with particular attention and respect to how and when young men seek help and with whom they want to share their problems.

KW - help seeking

KW - mental health

KW - young men

KW - qualitative research

U2 - 10.1177/1557988315619469

DO - 10.1177/1557988315619469

M3 - Article

VL - n/a

SP - 1

EP - 12

JO - American Journal of Men's Health

T2 - American Journal of Men's Health

JF - American Journal of Men's Health

SN - 1557-9883

ER -