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17 Comments to
10 Things Men Do That Make Their Depression Worse

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  1. This is a good article. I enjoyed reading it as it had a lot of insight. Thanks

  2. I have a book about m ale depression and the tile pretty much says what the problems is. It’s titled “I don’t want to talk about it”.

    • Thanks, Tom. Yep, guys are taught not to talk about their feelings – which makes it worse for sure!

  3. After a 20 year relationship with my husband, I have realized he “cycles” with it. I am a chronic sufferer of depression, and I do see a difference between our brands. I have made peace with the fact that I will probably always need an AD where he will not. I have had some tragedies in life and he has had next to nothing in that department, which is another reason why he probably does not “stay” depressed the way I do. When he does get in a slump, I wonder if it is just the normal human condition or if I could be more helpful to him. Talking to me? Getting therapy? A doctor? Although he won’t deny feeling depressed, he sure isn’t about getting help when he is in that mode. Ugh.

    • Hi, Tawanda,

      A very common response for a lot of guys to be sure. I appreciate you stopping by and sharing. It’s through sharing like you did here that we universalize common experiences. Sometimes, just being available to listen can be very helpful.

    • Hi Tawanda,

      I have bipolar disorder and my husband suffers from Major Depressive Disorder. I am all for getting help not just for myself but for my family too. I realize I can’t live a good life without treatment. For me, it just isn’t possible with my rapidly shifting mood swings between depression and mania. I have come to accept this is how my life is.

      He, on the other hand, will not get help. I know there is something that is seriously wrong with him, but when I ask him if everything is okay, he tells me he’s “fine.” It frustrates me because I am of the mind that if I’m getting help that he should too, even if it isn’t for me or himself then for our son. I am angry because I feel like he just doesn’t care enough to get help. He claims that in the past when he went to the doctor for it, the meds they gave him never worked. I do understand how frustrating that is since I too have issues with getting the right med combo to help me, but I don’t get why he won’t try again. I sound totally unsupportive I guess, but I’m fed up with dealing with not only my own problems but his too. It’s been going on off and on for almost 20 years now. It’s too much sometimes. I’m starting to think maybe part of the problem is me; maybe I make him miserable or something and that’s why he doesn’t get help. I don’t know. I wish I had the answers. I’m sorry you are going through the same type of situation where your husband won’t get help either.

  4. Very good article. I was just about to write a similar one as I too have experienced a great deal of these barriers while counseling guys. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to spend half of the first few sessions just BS’ing about football before they felt comfortable enough to even admit they were stressed.

    • Football comes up too as an ice-breaker (at times) with some of my clients. Eventually, we do get to the real reasons the person came it. But it can take time. That they come into the office in the first place is a huge first step. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. CBT and mindfulness are not cure alls and can make depression worse. There is no one solution fits all and that seems to be the current trends. Try using it with a person with CRPS, a horribly painful disease with no cure and limited treatment options and the knowledge it will be there 24/7 and continue to increase- yeah be mindful.

    • Never said CBT and mindfulness are a cure all. What I said is that the most effective approaches, according to the research, are a combination of CBT therapy, physical activity and medications. Also said I am fond of ACT, an offshoot of CBT that allows for several other non-traditional approaches to in the CBT realm. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and comments. 🙂

  6. Hi John. Having ADHD and Anxiety disorder, all my life and I have reoccurring suicidal, thoughts of late. I have found CBT is EXCELLANT. I had 3 sessions with a psychoanalyst and she gave me some excellent tools and belief that we can take control of these thoughts. She said, to ” let go of the fear”. There are a plethora of techniques to manage your mind back to health, so to speak. thanks, take care of yourself everyone. cheers, Eddy 🙂

    • Hi, Jedd,

      Just wanted to pop in and say thank you for sharing. I am glad to hear CBT has been helpful to you!

  7. Thank you, concise and digestible. I don’t really like the comment at the end of article about ‘real men’ though, I find it unnecessarily and unintentionally reinforces a negative term we can all do without.
    Also it might be worth pointing out a little more clearly that CBT isn’t for everyone, it’s one of a wide range of approaches people can consider.

  8. Hi John, I agree with most of the symptoms you describe. I wondered about the genetic/biological as being the key causal determinants of pathology. While I respect of specificity of the neurobiology of mental illness, this reductive lens can and does rob people of the meaning they make from traumatic social experiences. Also the functionalist perspective of psychology reads like a secular theodicy in many cases I am afraid. We need to criticalise our knowledge, otherwise our knowledge lacks ecological validity. The rebound from toxic social experiences in young lives is probably normative but the wear and tear impact on stressed biological over time is not insignificant in patterns of individual variation. The key question in the epistemology of reasoning is to ask: Can social adversity/pathology alter people’s trajectory whereby additive factors pile up. Here, I am talking of socially induced suffering not psychopathology/sociopathy or criminality. When older, the elasticity of early resilience can be seriously diminished when so many overlapping organic issues show up, depleting and burdensome on cognition and relationships. This might sound bleak and it is. However, awareness of this dynamic confronts us to get much closer to people’s lived experiences. Furthermore, it puts pressure on Govt to realise that slashing health budgets damages societies. Most people who do not accept victim-sensitive accounts of human experiences are likely to reject this account. We can do more good when we as clinicians advocate for better services for stress and trauma. I see so much expensive misinformation in this areas as it currently stands.

    • Hi, Gerald,

      I think you have raised some valid (and important) points and have given us all something to think about. I particularly connected with what you shared about aging and changing resiliency. That makes a great deal of sense.

      It sounds like work a lot with trauma? In any event, I am glad you stopped by.

 

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