Depression may manifest itself differently in men than women

I've found Arch Hart's books helpful in understanding myself as well as others. His one on Adrenaline and Stress was especially helpful to me a few years ago. But also Unmasking Male Depression had some really illuninating sections.

One point, kind of obvious when you think about it, is that men often experience and manifest depression in different ways than women. And somes this means that men don't recognise it for what it is. Some generalisations he observes:

  • Men tend to blame others for their depression where women tend to blame themselves.
  • Men tend to act out their inner turmoil, through anger for example, where women tend to turn inwards.
  • Men sturggle to maintain control at all costs, where women might have difficulty maintaining control.
  • Men can become overly irritable and hostile to others where women tend to be nice.
  • Men tend to attack when hurt where women tend to withdraw.
  • Men try to fix depression by problem solving where women try to fix depression by trying harder.
  • Men turn to sport, TV, sex and alcohol where women tend to turn to food, friends and emotional needs.
  • Men feel shamed by depression where women tend to feel guilty.
  • Men can become compulsive time keepers where women can procrastinate.
  • Men can be terrified to confront their weakness, where women might exaggerate and obsess over their weaknesses.

It doesn't matter if you are a woman who relates to lots of the more generally male traits or vice versa. The point is that recognising that depression can express itself in less typical ways might help you notice it quicker.

I notice I'm becoming angry and overly concerned with time, performance and control. Maybe I'm actually depressed? You see what I mean?

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