COMMENT: It’s time to end the stigma of mental health


Our report about the inquest into the death of young Wingerworth man Jordan Feek, who committed suicide following a struggle with personal and professional issues, is truly heartbreaking.

His tragic death has now led to a call from coroner James Newman for young men to talk about their feelings and seek help if they are worried about their mental health.

The coroner’s plea comes as it emerged that the average suicide rate for Derbyshire men aged between 15 and 34 was 8.8 per 100,000 people.

For women of the same age, the figure was 3.2 suicides per 100,000 people.

Experts in mental health speak of a fear among young men to seek help because they are worried about being called ‘mental’ or a ‘psycho’.

Sadly, we still live in a society where some dismiss mental health and are ignorant of the effects and pain being endured by those struck down by the vice-like grip which is depression - or other related conditions.

The number of times I have read on social media people telling others to ‘get a grip’ sadden and anger me.

You cannot just turn off being depressed like a switch. It just happens, just like some people are struck down by other serious illnesses.

Is there any wonder some sufferers feel they cannot open up about what they are experiencing and ultimately feel isolated and unable to turn to someone for help?

The coroner’s call for young men to speak and reach out for help has to be applauded and one hopes it will encourage more men between the age of 15 and 34 that it is ok to seek help.

Let’s hope this fresh warning goes a long way to helping those currently suffering in silence.