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Cross-cultural perspectives on mental health shame among male workers

  • Yasuhiro Kotera1,*,
  • Jessica Jackson2
  • Muhammad Aledeh3
  • Ann-Marie Edwards4
  • Christian Veasey5
  • Kristian Barnes6
  • Magdalena A. Komorowska2
  • Habib Adam7
  • Ann Kirkman2

1School of Health Sciences, University of Nottingham, NG7 2TU Nottingham, UK

2College of Health, Psychology and Social Care, University of Derby, DE22 1GB Derby, UK

3Klinik Donaustadt, Wiener Gesundheitsverbund, AT-1220 Vienna, Austria

4University of Essex Online, Kaplan Open Learning, Palace House, SE1 9DE London, UK

5College of Business, Law and Social Sciences, University of Derby, DE22 1GB Derby, UK

6Moriarty, Flynn & Barnes, 308900 Singapore, Singapore

7University of Applied Sciences, FH Technikum Vienna, 1200 Wien, Austria

DOI: 10.22514/jomh.2023.018

Submitted: 01 November 2022 Accepted: 10 February 2023

Online publish date: 01 March 2023

*Corresponding Author(s): Yasuhiro Kotera E-mail:


Globally, awareness of workplace mental health problems has increased rapidly. Employees need to be able to reflect on their wellbeing and ask for help if needed. Previous research has indicated mental health shame (or shame associated with mental health problems) is a barrier toward self-reflection and help-seeking. Our previous research identified that levels and types of mental health shame vary greatly across cultures, highlighting a need for a cross-cultural understanding of mental health shame. Accordingly, this perspective paper will focus on shame associated with mental health problems among male workers across cultures, and discuss differences among them in relation to cultures. Consistently, mental health shame in male workers is reported high in many cultures. Mental health literacy and wellness activities such as self-compassion training, organisational approaches to encourage connectedness and safety are recommended. Insights from our perspective can help the human resources staff and managers identify helpful approaches for mental health shame in a diverse workplace.


Mental health shame; Workplace mental health; Male employees; Men’s mental health; Help-seeking; Self-reflection; Masculinity; Perspective

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Yasuhiro Kotera,Jessica Jackson,Muhammad Aledeh,Ann-Marie Edwards,Christian Veasey,Kristian Barnes,Magdalena A. Komorowska,Habib Adam,Ann Kirkman. Cross-cultural perspectives on mental health shame among male workers. Journal of Men's Health. 2023.doi:10.22514/jomh.2023.018.


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