Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Men's depression is different -- and dangerous

Friday Sept 11 is Global Suicide Awareness Day and there will be a memorial walk at the City Hall in Churchill Square at noon. It is opportune therefore that I received this clip from the Vancouver Sun.

In his aptly-titled book I Don't Want to Talk About It -- Overcoming the Secret Legacy of Male Depression (Scribner, $17.50) Harvard psychotherapist Terrence Real calls chronic depression a "silent epidemic in men." He notes the "problems that we think of as typically male--difficulty with intimacy, workaholism, alcoholism, abusive behaviour, and rage -- are really attempts to escape depression."

Real explains that "women tend to internalize pain,"while "boys, and later men, tend to externalize pain: they are more likely to feel victimized by others and to discharge distress through action." Hence the statistics, which show that women attempt suicide more often than men, yet males actually kill themselves at a rate three to four times higher than females.

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