MEN & DEPRESSION Andy Novinska, LCPC, CADC Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery at Advocate BroMenn
DisclaimerThe following presentation contains somegeneralizations and stereotypes which may/may notoffend/validate what you know/may know aboutmen.This information may lead you to pathologize yoursons, brothers, boyfriends, husbands, grandparents,postman, waiter, and/or any other male figure in yourlife.Consume with care.
Born in the U.S.A. Masculine Feminine Independent Dependent Logical Emotional Strong Weak Assertive Passive Adventurous Cautious
Patriarchy American Heritage Dictionary A social system in which the father is the head of the family and men have authority over women and children. A family, community, or society based on this system or governed by men.
Psychological Patriarchy Defining relationships between two sets of human qualities How Can I Get Through to You? Reconnecting Men and Women, by Terrance Real Men and Women are both: Independent and Dependent Logical and Emotional Strong and Weak Assertive and Passive
Boys Learn Hide or disconnect from feelings/emotions Don’t ask for help (or admit you need help) Stand up for yourself (be aggressive) Don’t be a... Sissy Wimp Sally Punk Etc… Real Boys : Rescuing Our Sons from the Myths of Boyhood by William Pollack and Mary Pipher Be tough, big boys (real men) don’t cry
Emotional Life of the Male In general… Emotions live in the background of a man’s life and the foreground of a woman’s. Men compartmentalize and intellectualize more. Men experience a harder time interpreting unspoken messages in gestures, facial expressions and tone of voice Men react less intensely to emotions — and forget them faster The Lazy Husband by Josh Coleman, PhD Societal norms/culture, politics, biases/prejudices, religion, temperament, etc., all influence our emotional lives
Stoic ManStoicism 1. indifference to pleasure and pain 2. (Philosophy) (capital) the philosophy of the Stoics stoicism a form of conduct conforming to the precepts of the Stoics, especially as characterized by indifference to pain and pleasure. "Inside every man is a secret fear that he lacks competence and courage, that hes not as manly as he should be. A man knows he is supposed to take a bullet for his family. A man knows he is supposed to fix whatever gets broken. When hes feeling powerless, when everything he says seems to be the wrong thing, he shuts down and withdraws. “ Mark Goulston, MD, co-author of The 6 Secrets of a Lasting Relationship
The BrainPrefrontal CortexThe impulse control center of the brain, the part of the brain that helps us consider the consequences of our actions . This region is not fully developed until the early to mid 20’s in males.Assess for: Drug and Alcohol Head trauma Fighting Sports Accidents Abuse
The Male Brain Men are hard-wired differently The connection between the left brain (logic) and the right (emotion), is much greater in women. “Women have the equivalent of an interstate highway, so they move readily between the right and left brains. For men the connection is like a meandering country lane, so we don’t have such ready access to feelings.” David Powell, PhD, president of the International Center for Health Concerns All things considered equal, vision trumps all senses with men even more visual that women.
The BrainMirror Neurons A neuron that fires when we act out a behavior OR when we observe a behavior in another Social behaviors Empathy Language In humans, brain activity consistent with that of mirror neurons has been found in the premotor cortex, supplementary motor area, primary somatosensory cortex and the inferior parietal cortex "The mirror-neuron system“, 2004, Annual Review of Neuroscience
Depression Basics Every year depression affects approximately 19 million Americans, or 9.5% of the U.S. population Six million American men will be diagnosed with depression this year At some point in their lives 5-12% of men will become clinically depressed National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Abraham Lincoln “I am now the most miserable man living. If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family, there would not be one cheerful face on the earth. Whether I shall ever be better I can not tell; I awfully forebode I shall not. To remain as I am is impossible; I must die or be better, it appears to me.”
Adult Symptoms of Depression Depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or most activities, most of the day, nearly every day Significant weight loss/gain or significant decrease/increase in appetite nearly every day Insomnia or Hypersomnia nearly every day Psychomotor agitation or retardation nearly every day Fatigue or loss of energy nearly every day Feelings of worthlessness or excessive/inappropriate guilt Diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness, nearly every day Recurrent thoughts of death (not just fear of dying), recurrent suicidal ideation without a specific plan, or a suicide attempt or a specific plan for committing suicide
Feminizing Depression “If modern psychologists were shown to understand how mens emotions affect their behaviors, its only because their predecessors long ago decided that having a uterus was the main risk factor for mental illness. During the last two centuries, depression was largely viewed as a female problem, an outgrowth of hormonal fluctuations stemming from puberty, childbirth and menopause” Julie Scelfo, Newsweek, Feb. 26, 2007
Feminizing Depression “We tend not to recognize depression in men because the disorder itself is seen as unmanly. Depression carries, to many, a double stain-the stigma of mental illness and also the sigma of feminine emotionality” Terrence Real
“Male” Symptoms of Depression Frustration & Irritability Anger & Aggression Risky Behaviors (reckless driving, acting out sexually, gambling, etc.) Alcohol or Substance abuse Physical Ailments (pain, digestive issues, headaches) Overworking (“workaholic”) Excessive Television (sports) Excessive Gaming or Internet Use “As I reflect on over 30 years of clinical experience, I am appalled at the realization that I have misdiagnosed male depression many times” Dr. Archibald Hart Psychologist and Author of Unmasking Male Depression
Whats at Stake? “Children of depressed parents have high rates of depression and anxiety disorders that are impairing and reoccur over the course of their lives" Myrna Weissman, Ph.D. Children with depressed parents have three times the rate of anxiety disorders, major depression, and substance use disorders Adult children whose parents were depressed have about five times the rate of cardiovascular illness as children of non-depressed parents Twice as many kids of depressed parents (19 percent) developed an addiction to drugs or alcohol, as did those of non-depressed parents (8 percent) Offspring of Depressed Parents: 20 Years Later, 2006 Men & Depression: Facing Darkness, Newsweek, 02/2007
Men & Suicide Although women attempt suicide more often than men, men are four times as likely to complete suicide Men take an average of just 12 months to go from contemplating suicide to attempting suicide. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Cause of Death? Suicide Covert Suicide (staged accidents) Accidents (due to high risk behaviors) Neglect of overall health Violence/Homicide Strokes Heart Attack ____________________
Heart Disease and Depression People with heart disease are more prone to develop depression People with depression are more likely to have heart disease than otherwise healthy people National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Men with depression and heart disease are two to three times more likely to die than men with heart disease who are not depressed (3) Men and Depression: New Treatments, Newsweek 02/2007
Working with Men Assess for other disorders such as: Anxiety, PTSD, sexual impulsivity, gambling issues Be careful of jumping to axis II Explore family history Use a concrete tool such as the LEQ Discuss male role models Including athletes and media figures Teach the language of emotions Work with the left brain!
Working with Men Talk “side-by-side” Physically getting in a man’s face makes may trigger confrontation (watch personal space) Coping skills Exercise! Release stress and manages anger (cortisol goes down, dopamine and endorphins go up) Diet Hobbies/Interests Painting, playing a musical instrument, woodworking, etc.) can tap into a man’s emotions Explore parenting and partnering skills Look for mentors (even surrogate ones!)
Thank You Andy Novinska, LCPC, CADC Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery at Advocate BroMennAndrew.Novinska@advocatehealth.com