“Healthy Minds, Healthy Men”: A Community Conversation

Mills Community Support LogoFeaturing presentations as well as thought-provoking discussion led by Will Affleck, PhD candidate from the Dept. of Psychiatry at McGill University and Dr. Luis Oliver, C.Psych, of the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre

Almonte Old Town Hall April 2, 10am-12pm, doors open at 9:30am

This conversation is a co-hosted by the Mississippi Mills Drug Strategy Committee and Lanark County Mental Health. It’s free and all are welcome.

Will Affleck is a PhD candidate from the Dept. of Psychiatry at McGill University. He holds an MA in Medical Ethics (McGill). His doctoral research takes place in the North-East of Sri Lanka, where he is examining the nature of trauma disorders as they result from natural disaster and human conflict. Will has been funded through a CIHR Banting and Best doctoral award, a doctoral award from the Fonds de Recherche Santé du Québec, and was recently award the MedStar Award from McGill medicine. His research interests include global mental health, men’s mental health, trauma disorders, and ethics in mental health research.

Fewer men than women are diagnosed with common mental health disorders (depression, anxiety, PTSD), although commentaries about men’s mental health suggest that the lower reported rates may be due to the widespread use of generic diagnostic criteria that are not sensitive to men’s symptoms, as well as men’s reluctance to express concerns about their mental health or access professional health care services. In this conversation I will provide an overview of the connections between depression and men and, based on that literature, make recommendations for how we as a community we can better understand, identify and treat men with mental health problems.

Dr. Luis Oliver is a clinical psychologist who for the past several years has worked in the area of military trauma. He currently works at the OSI Clinic at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, specializing in the treatment of operational stress injuries like PTSD and depression. Dr. Oliver was also clinical professor at Ottawa University/St. Paul University and was previously in private practice for several years. He did his doctoral dissertation in the area of depression in men.

I’ll be talking about gender differences (emphasizing how men and women are more alike than different, etc.), socializing and gender role acculturation in childhood and the impact of that (e.g., emotional numbing and its consequences), and then starting to describe healthier ways of being.