Good Morning Loves,
Today, I wanted to introduce to you Robert, a fellow blogger and admirable human being. If you have not checked out his work yet, then please do! I promise, you will not regret it! Over the course of the last couples of weeks Robert and I have conducted an interview discussing the importance of mental health. On my page you will see his portion of the interview and on his page you will find mine!
Let’s start the interview telling everyone a bit about yourself:
Hey everyone! I’m the nonalcoholicstudent, otherwise known as Robert, and I’m currently a student at The University of York blogging about my life as a student as well as showing the more realistic side to uni life that you don’t get from your typical student blogger. I’m also a writer working on my debut novel and documenting my writing process on my blog as well. Although I have vastly improved over the last three years or so, I have struggled with social anxiety all my life.
1. Some people who suffer from depression or anxiety turn to alcohol as a coping mechanism. I’m aware you do not drink, so what do you when you feel sad/upset/anxious? What’s your coping mechanism? How do you overcome those feelings? Do you have any tips or tricks for other college students?
My answer may sound flippant but I can assure it’s not. I am possibly the skinniest person I know which is strange baring in mind I do have a habit of stress-eating but that is very much for low key stress. If I’m worried about exams or assignments, I feel as though I need to have something to eat but it has to be very non-calorific, like popcorn. However, for more serious instances of anxiety, I generally try to arrange everything so that I can take a day off. I also think it’s really helpful, if anxiety is setting in, to change your location. For students in particular, it can be quite easy to sit up in halls letting the anxiety fester. What I try to do is plug in some headphones and go for a walk for about an hour. Try and find somewhere scenic and just get away from your own mind for a minute.
2. We all know that society pressures men to maintain a strong, independent, stoic, competitive, and tough demeanor. “Real men” don’t talk about their feelings. I’m not saying we should have men hold hands and talk about their emotions in safe spaces or anything. But what steps do we need to take to end the negative stigma of mental health for men?
I think it starts right where we raise our sons. As a child, you look up to your parents and the adults around you and you try to imitate them because, as a child, there is nothing you want more desperately than to be an adult. I think we need to stop using denigrating words like ‘snowflakes’ and I think the biggest threat to male mental health is other men. It isn’t women in society that have a problem with the stigma around male mental health: it’s other men.
3. Do you and your male friends ever talk about your feelings? For instance, you have a crush on a pretty girl and finally had the courage to ask her out. Unfortunately, she turns you down and you face rejection. Would you mention it to your friends or just let it go and get over it?
Although I have had male friends in the past who I could talk to in that way, as I have got older, I found that to be less so. If I’m brutally honest, my closest friend right now is a girl I work with. Whenever I need advice with girls, I go to her. My issue with the modern male is this: guys my age still haven’t quite matured yet. There is this stupid, impish (or what I call ‘ladish’) phase that guys seem to go through between the ages of about 13-18 in which the line between banter and bullying becomes very blurry indeed. To be honest, if I were to envisage a situation in which I were to ask a girl out, be rejected, and tell a male friend about it, I would say 50% would laugh, even if I did feel a bit stupid. Because that is how guys cope with things: humour. I think we have been conditioned so much by society to stifle genuine feelings that the only means of expressing those feelings is by laughing and making a joke about something that would otherwise be serious. That’s why if I want genuine advice about how to handle a text from my ex-girlfriend, I go to the girl I work with!
I truly hope you guys enjoyed that interview with Robert, who is such a genuinely good and kind-hearted soul. Let me know what you guys think, you know I always love hearing from you! What mental health tips do you have for others? Also, you are welcome to check out my portion of the interview here.
Wherever you are in the world stay happy, healthy, and safe! ❤️