While research shows depression in men is just as prevalent as depression in women, men tend to go undiagnosed and untreated more often. So why is that? Well, the answer is simple. In our society boys are raised to not express themselves or their feelings. Haven’t we all heard the expression, “suck it up”, or “be a man, “or “boys don’t cry” when a young boy is looking to voice his sadness?
Here are some statistics about melancholy in men that may surprise you:
- It is believed that 6 million men in the United States suffer from some form of depression. That is 7% of the male population.
- Many men have a hard time discussing their depression due to a perceived negative stereotype of the disorder. They may feel others will view them as weak, or inferior.
- Typical symptoms of depression in men range from headaches, digestive problems, chronic pain and loss of interest in typical activities. Some men may drink excessively, use drugs, act out violently or exhibit reckless behavior.
- Men are 4 times more likely to die by suicide than women, although women attempt suicide more often than men.
It is important to realize that nowadays, there is more help and treatments available for this type of despair than in any time in our history. Research has shown a combination of anti-depressant medication and “talk therapy” is the most effective treatment to reduce or even eliminate the debilitating sadness that permeates some men’s lives.