LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Studies show men are less likely than women to seek mental health support due to social norms, reluctance to speak and downplaying symptoms. But it isn’t the case for all men.

Mental health awareness month is not about appearing strong but having the courage to admit their weaknesses. However, a group of men who attended a men’s sound meditation class at Parc Village in Lafayette don’t see it that way. The group had no issue leaving their toughness and emotional reserve at the door to focus on their mental wellness

Jackie Arceneaux attended the class for the first time. He said it’s been a while since he “took a load off”. “It was funny just letting myself go like that.”

Arceneaux said with life and all its responsibilities, taking care of his mental health is often last on the list. “I try to walk at least two or three days a week, but I always have something going on.”

Arceneaux said the stigma of men and mental health does not give any man the space to prioritize their mental health without appearing weak or incapable of providing and protecting.

“Men normally don’t share anything we were taught to work, provide and take care of ourselves last. I think it’s good that men are actually starting to speak out about it.”