Article on Men's Issues
Stress and Men’s Issues
Despite certain sociological perspectives, it’s never been easy to be a man. Lately, it may be even more stressful and confusing, as expectations and roles are in flux throughout society, and current economic, career, and relationship pressures are mounting.
Stress is not gender specific. But it does either contribute to problems with -- or take a heavy toll on -- your physical and mental health, as well as general life satisfaction and career achievement.
It has estimated that as much as 70-80% of all visits to doctors are for stress-related illness. At least half or more of all illness is estimated to be stress-induced. Obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, autoimmune diseases like lupus, and more all are impacted in some way by stress. These are problems and health care costs that could be measurably reduced if stress were addressed through psychotherapy before it damages your body and reduces your life span.
Obvious sources of stress are the economy and your financial status, job and marriage or relationship instability, parenting and other challenging family obligations, and increased career responsibilities.
Whether due to upbringing, cultural influences, an experienced trauma, or innate personality, many men are particularly reluctant to outwardly express emotions. The partners and women in your life may have complained about this, which likely adds another source of stress to your everyday life.
Other stressors that men are reluctant to talk about can include concerns about masculinity, identity, sexuality or the quality of the sex life.
Often the first sign of stress is an increase in relationship discord -- more arguments, frustration, irritability, aggression (or passive aggressiveness), and self sabotage can all indicate that your stress level is becoming chronic and getting to a danger point.
If you are sleeping less, drinking or using drugs more, and engaging in other questionably healthy coping measures – you could do yourself and your loved ones a favor by dealing more productively with your stressors.
In my psychological services practice, I see men who are having a rough time dealing with the psychological and emotional stresses of the workplace, and career success, who are drinking to excess in order to cope, and may be on the verge of divorce as a result.
I also see men who are downright confused about what their partner wants from them, or are feeling highly irritable without knowing why.
If any of that sounds familiar to you, and you’d like to seriously change your learned and unconscious reactions to the stressors in your life, I can help.
To learn about what is stressing you out,
and get expert help
call Abigail Blackburn, PsyD
at 617 . 686 . 2420
For more stress facts, see: http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/03/stress.aspx
Content copyright 2012 Abigail Blackburn. All Rights Reserved