Science

Mental Health Problems Linked To Misogyny, Playboy Attitudes

By Christie Abagon , Nov 23, 2016 02:06 AM EST
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Playboys, sexists listen up.  If you think that having a lot of sex and having control over women is a healthy male lifestyle, you are probably wrong.  A new study shows being a playboy and sexist can actually affect your mental well-being. 

Those Who Embrace "Masculine Norms" Are More Likely To Develop Mental Health Problems

A study led by Y. Joel Wong, associate professor of counselling and educational psychology at Indiana University Bloomington, shows link between masculinity and mental health.  The research "looked at expectations about what it means to be masculine, and how that relates to mental health outcomes among men."  The result?  Men who live by the "norms" are more likely to develop depression, stress, and other mental health issues.   Those who are not college-educated face higher risk.

Sexists Are Less Likely To Seek Psychological Help

The study, which was published on the Journal of Counseling Psychology, analyzed 74 studies involving around 19,500 mostly white men.  The researchers gauged men's beliefs about gender and their emotional well being. The issues they were asked about included depression, anxiety, and negative body image.

"What we found overall is that the more that men conformed to masculine norms the poorer their mental health, and the less likely they were to seek mental health services," Wong said.  There are 11 different types of masculine norms: desire to win; to retain emotional control; to take risks; to engage in violence; to exert dominant behavior; to participate in a "playboy" lifestyle; to be self-reliant; to elevate work to the highest level of importance; to retain power over women; to maintain a disdain for homosexuals; and to pursue "status."

"It could be that these norms are increasingly being rejected and thought of as outdated, which means some men might get pushback by people who are uncomfortable with these norms...For example, if you were maybe sexually promiscuous in the past, your partner might have just tolerated that. But today you might get pushback. Sexism is not merely a social injustice, but may also have a detrimental effect on the mental health of those who embrace such attitudes," Wong concluded.

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