Men & Depression

As a man, it can be hard to admit to yourself and others that you are depressed. You may feel that admitting it is weak, or that you should be able to get over your negative feelings on your own.

Embarrassed, you may try to hide your depression from family and friends, and pretend it doesn’t exist. But facing your depression is important, and so is getting help.

Even “tough guys” get depressed

Our culture teaches us that a tough guy—a man’s man—doesn’t get depressed. If you believe what you see on TV, men should always be in control of their emotions, immune to feelings of sadness, loneliness, anger, agitation, stress and anxiety.

If you’re alive, you’re prone to all of these feelings regardless of gender.

It’s time to get tough with your depression

Instead of facing depression head on, you may be tempted to mask the problem by losing yourself in work or sports. Overusing alcohol or drugs. Spending hours on the Internet or out gambling. But these behaviors tend to make depression worse and create a cycle of pain and problems.

Would a real man, a tough guy, use avoidance tactics like these? Take control of your depression. Show it who’s boss.

Next: Signs & Symptoms

Common facts about male depression

  • Roughly 12% of men experience depression in their lifetimes
  • Men are less likely than women to seek treatment for their depression
  • Untreated depression is the primary cause of suicide
  • Suicide is the 7th leading cause of death for men in the U.S.
  • Unprecedented rates of suicide and depression are rising in the U.S. Military
  • Today, 68 men will die by suicide, leaving behind spouses, children, friends and family

If you are in crisis, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) National Suicide Prevention Lifeline