depression is different in men

Depression is Different for Men

Never cry. Don’t show your feelings. Man up. Sometimes social pressures convince men that they cannot talk about their emotions, mental health or depression.

We want to show men that their mental health is just has important as their physical health.

4 Ways Depression Feels Different for Men

Turns out, men are not as likely as women to report feeling depressed.

“Unfortunately, often men still equate being depressed as being weak or a failure,” says Kimble Richardson licensed mental health counselor with Community Behavioral Health. “When someone has a broken bone we know there’s a problem because it can be seen. Symptoms of depression can be more internal and often are not noticed until they’re severe. If more men recognized that depression is an illness and not a weakness, it literally would save lives.” 

Because social cues encourage men to keep their emotions to themselves or to solve their own problems, they internalize depression and become numb. This means that the signs of depression in men are different that those in women. Here are some signs of depression in men:

  • Having trouble sleeping or a loss of energy in usual activities
  • Feeling like a failure
  • Becoming angry easier and/or more frequently
  • Thoughts of suicide

How to Reach Out

More and more public figures are speaking frankly about their depression. Michael Phelps opened up about his battle with depression that came after competing in the Olympics.  The Daily Show host, Trevor Noah, didn’t recognize he had depression until hearing fellow comedian Jim Carrey discuss his own struggles.  Kevin Love, the Cleveland Cavaliers star who suffered a panic attack while playing against Atlanta Hawks years ago, spoke out recently about the current experience with COVID and why it’s important for those struggling with mental health issues to get help. 

The more we talk about mental health, the more men will feel as though they can share their emotions. Here are some ways you can start a conversation:

Talk to your friends–If you feel down or depressed, talk to your friends. Checking in with our loved ones helps us feel connected and less overwhelmed.

Talk to your doctor–Let your primary care doctor know if you’ve stopped doing things you enjoy, or changed your sleeping and eating patterns. He or she might recommend ways to track your feelings and activities.

Call or text–If you want to talk about your depression, have concerns about a loved one, or especially if you have thoughts or plans of suicide, there are professional counselors standing by 24/7 to help. Call 317-621-5700 or text IN to 741741.

4 Ways to Improve Your Mental Health

Sometimes, we can begin to improve our mental health by taking small steps. If you feel like you need something to change your mood or negative thinking, try these activities:

  • Go outside
  • Get moving
  • Spend quality time with a close friend
  • Speak with a professional mental health counselor

If you’d like to learn more about the signs of depression, talk to your doctor or visit HaveHope.com. Or, take one small step. Take the depression screening for more information.