In this episode of Sisters Without Shame, a friend in crisis has become increasingly frustrated with her elderly uncle’s hesitancy to visit a doctor. Common reasons for this reluctance to visit their GP include embarrassment, discomfort, and not wanting to change their diets. This is according to Men’s Foundation founder, Garron Gselle.
Gselle also unpacks the barriers that men face when it comes to accessing healthcare in Mzansi. The Men’s Foundation is the only South African charity dedicated to investing in survivorship and research programmes to increase the life expectancy of South African men.
“One of the things that we, as men, experience, is that we’re not always in a position of strength. We define ourselves by being the strong ones, society expects us to be strong. We do not ever want to question our vulnerability or our mortality, and it is easier for us to ignore and hope that it is going to go away.”
Get your head out of the sand
Gents, there are plenty of risks associated with delaying seeing your doctor, Gselle cautions.
“Collectively as men, we need to start addressing our health-seeking behaviours in terms of acknowledging ourselves and the role we play not only in our community, but in our society as well.”
Neglecting your health may lead to finding comfort in substances and even risky sexual behaviours, he says. “A man believes that the number of sexual partners they have had, makes them strong and to be admired amongst their peers. We know once we start to bring in those types of dependencies, it starts to lead to other problems.”
On this episode Gselle unpacks:
- Self-examination tips for men
- The crisis of mental health and high suicide rates among men in South Africa
Listen to the full interview on Sisters Without Shame
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