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'Mancession' Portends Depressing Future for Men

Posted by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:34 PM
  • 4 Replies

'Mancession' Portends Depressing Future for Men

LiveScience.com
LiveScience.com livescience.com - 1 hr 47 mins ago

Societal and economic shifts may put more men in Western countries at risk for depression, scientists worry.

"Western men, particularly those with low education levels, will face a difficult road in the 21st century," write the authors of an editorial in the March issue of The British Journal of Psychiatry. "It may be more difficult, on average, for men to adjust to a domestic role than for women to adjust to a work role."

Currently, women have nearly twice the lifetime risk of suffering from major depression, although it's not fully understood why.

A confluence of trends could change this ratio, they write, including fewer job options for men who no longer outearn their partners. As the job options narrow, men begin to assume a more prominent role as caregivers in the home - a role traditionally associated with women. [Study: Women Are in Charge at Home]

The recent economic downturn has been dubbed the "Mancession" for its disproportionate effect on traditional male industries, such as construction and manufacturing. Meanwhile, women are outpacing men in the pursuit of undergraduate and graduate degrees and becoming a larger share of primary household earners.

Men's failure to fulfill the role of breadwinner is associated with greater depression and marital conflict, but if societal expectations are altered, men may experience less distress, write researchers Boadie Dunlop and Tanja Mletzko, both of Emory University School of Medicine.

If men are innately less suited to care for young children and maintain households, then their increased contribution in this area could lead to lowered self-esteem and more depression. However, if women are better equipped to care for young children simply because they learn to be that way, through socialization - rather than because of biological differences between the sexes - it may be possible to help expectant fathers make this transition, they write. [Dads Get Postpartum Depression, Too]

Even so, "men in the changing economy will still face the same risks for depression that women faced in older economies: trapped in a family role from which they cannot escape because of an inability to find employment," the researchers write. 

by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:34 PM
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brittaniepierce
by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:43 PM

 Women are going to college more than men....... we could very well see a shift. I was talking to someone from my small group (she is a Psychologist and college professor), and she says that a lot of the female professors husbands are the main caregivers. Actually, once I am done with college DH and I will reverse roles. He will become the main caregiver, and I will work full-time. He though is not depressed by this; he looks forward to it. He loves being with his DD, and I know it makes him feel bad that he cannot be with her all of the time. If I work full-time he will be given much more time with our child (and with the next LO). I could though see this as a problem for men that hold on desperately to traditional roles. Men are now exspected to be actual fathers. Also one would also think that some men would have negative feeling toward their wives surpassing them in regards to financial success.


Brittanie, wife to Scott and momma to Saylor. Also TTC and hoping for baby number 2:

sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:45 PM

My sister is married to a stay at home Dad..although he sometimes works part time

It works for them

Quoting brittaniepierce:

 Women are going to college more than men....... we could very well see a shift. I was talking to someone from my small group (she is a Psychologist and college professor), and she says that a lot of the female professors husbands are the main caregivers. Actually, once I am done with college DH and I will reverse roles. He will become the main caregiver, and I will work full-time. He though is not depressed by this; he looks forward to it. He loves being with his DD, and I know it makes him feel bad that he cannot be with her all of the time. If I work full-time he will be given much more time with our child (and with the next LO). I could though see this as a problem for men that hold on desperately to traditional roles. Men are now exspected to be actual fathers. Also one would also think that some men would have negative feeling toward their wives surpassing them in regards to financial success.


parrishsky
by Maxfield on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:46 PM

Interesting.... I would imagine the difficulty it is for a man not to maintain his role as provider but don't necessarily agree they are prone to depression. If his wife kept the income high and their lifestyle didn't change why does it matter who is bringing it in?  Just my thoughts...

brittaniepierce
by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 12:51 PM

 And it does for so many couples:)

Quoting sweet-a-kins:

My sister is married to a stay at home Dad..although he sometimes works part time

It works for them

Quoting brittaniepierce:

 Women are going to college more than men....... we could very well see a shift. I was talking to someone from my small group (she is a Psychologist and college professor), and she says that a lot of the female professors husbands are the main caregivers. Actually, once I am done with college DH and I will reverse roles. He will become the main caregiver, and I will work full-time. He though is not depressed by this; he looks forward to it. He loves being with his DD, and I know it makes him feel bad that he cannot be with her all of the time. If I work full-time he will be given much more time with our child (and with the next LO). I could though see this as a problem for men that hold on desperately to traditional roles. Men are now exspected to be actual fathers. Also one would also think that some men would have negative feeling toward their wives surpassing them in regards to financial success.

 

 


Brittanie, wife to Scott and momma to Saylor. Also TTC and hoping for baby number 2:

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