Depression in Men is Not Weakness

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A certain stigma has been attached in the past to men who suffer emotionally, particularly with regards to sharing their pain externally or seeking help. But not only is society changing, it is now very common to face depression as a man, and the truth of the importance of healing (often with professional help) is being continually revealed.

It’s vital for men to recognise that depression is not weakness.

In Australia, roughly 4 million people suffer from mental disorders. Mental health disorders don’t discriminate: they affect men and women, young and old, of all races, creeds, and socio-economic backgrounds. One of the most common mental health conditions is depression. While women are statistically more likely to experience depression and anxiety in their lifetime, these issues affect men as well. But far too often, men ignore their symptoms, push aside their depression, and fail to get the help they need.

Marked by a persistent depressed mood lasting for a period generally exceeding several weeks, depression is a serious mood disorder that can be distressing, but with treatment and attention, men and women can fully heal from their depression. Do you know a man in your life who may be depressed? Or is that man you? Keep reading to find out what you can do.

A certain stigma has been attached in the past to men who suffer emotionally, particularly with regards to sharing their pain externally or seeking help. There may also be a deep-seated belief that men are meant to “stay strong” and to fight their battles on their own. But not only is society changing, it is now very common to face depression as a man, and the truth of the importance of healing (often with professional help) is being continually revealed.

It’s vital for men to recognise that depression is not weakness. Depression arises from a range of causes including problems in relationships, job loss, changes in family or living circumstances, physical health problems, drug and alcohol use, financial difficulties, and social isolation. Biological and genetic factors may also play a role. These events and circumstances can present major challenges to those experiencing them, and it is often easy to see how these obstacles can lead to an ongoing depressed mood.

While women tend to be more vocal, finding outlets for their fears and worries by talking with friends and family, men tend to be more withdrawn and less likely to seek support and share their feelings. It is necessary for men to recognise that depression is common and to know that there are treatment options available. Most importantly, men can discover that healing from depression is actually a way to experience growth, strength, and independence.

Individuals suffering from depression often experience a variety of similar symptoms such as lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities, low energy, irritability, problems concentrating, feelings of emptiness, guilt, and physical aches and pains. Also present may be sleep problems such as insomnia, substance abuse, feelings of hopelessness, and dark or suicidal thoughts. Anger is a frequent symptom of depression, appearing with higher frequency in men. This could be due in part to a tendency in men to deny their depressed mood and to quash intense emotions, holding them internally.

If you are a man and you believe you are experiencing depression, acknowledging the problem is the first step. Treatment is possible and you can find your way back to the satisfying, fulfilling life you deserve. There is help for you in Sydney at Northside Group. We offer the leading Sydney depression treatment and provide options for patients just like you. Please get in touch today to learn more about what we do. And if someone you know could benefit from Northside, point them towards us, too.

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Ory Purhonen