The Problem With Man’s Permanent Solution
By Ghost of A Dead Sperm June 8th, 2017
It has become growing epidemic since the early 2000s as it lurks in every man’s life. Male suicide has become a growing problem. According to Emory University, out of all the victims that have committed suicide, 80% of them were male while 20% of them were female. This statistic becomes even more troubling when it is realized that about 35000 people die by suicide every year.
To understand why this problem exists, it is first needed to understand why people commit suicide and have mental problems. The reasons most people commit suicide is because of their life history, mental health, lifestyle, employment, relationship, and genetics.
Life History: Life history refers to tragic events that have happened in life such as physical and sexual abuse and other traumatic experiences. Dr. Bert H. Hoff, a professor at the University of Phoenix who teaches criminal justice, management, political science, and policy planning, cites his experience in criminal justice that more men are victims of physical abuse. He also states that there are very little organizations to help men for abuse compared to women and that there about 2.3 million men around the world who are victims of physical abuse.
Mental Health: Mental health, in this case referring to many cases of schizophrenia and various psychological disorders. According to schizophrenia.com, not only are men more prone to schizophrenia but also being a schizophrenic increase your chance of suicide by 50%. When it comes to mental disorders, the story becomes more gendered. “Gender bias occurs in the treatment of psychological disorders, actually, ” an article in the World Health Organization writes, “Doctors are more likely to diagnose depression in women compared with men, even when they have similar scores on standardized measures of depression or present with identical symptoms.” Because of these statistics, it is unknown whether men are more prone to mental illness than women.
Lifestyle: When discussing lifestyle, it refers to addiction. Generally, men tend to be more prone to addiction. The chart on the right presents the problem in terms of alcohol addiction and depressive episodes. This statistic shows that men are more likely to be addicted to alcohol but are less likely to have depressive episodes. The only issue with this statistic is that it does not take into account that men and women experience depression differently.
Employment: Employment is a tricky issue as the statistics do not clearly reflect reality but it is generally seen that men tend to have a higher unemployment rate compared to women, which can lead to depression and even suicide.
Relationship: Relationships, referring to the lack of a relationship, is tough as boys are more prone to high functioning autism, which comes with the repercussions of having poor social skills. When it comes to bullying, boys are more likely to get bullied.
Genetics: Genetics refers to high functioning mental issues like Asperger’s Syndrome and depression in genetics. In genetics, women are more likely to have depression, but when it comes to Asperger’s, men overwhelmingly are diagnosed with Asperger’s than women are.
At this moment, the awareness of the problem has spread, but not much is being done as currently, there is a debate on what is causing this to happen. Sam Parker, a writer from Esquire, has written about his ideas of what causes this issue. He predicts that it is the male role in society that creates this issue. “A little boy falls down and it's 'you don't cry'. That's what we expect from a man — we want them to 'man up'”, Sam writes. When he writes this, he refers to the idea of how men in society are “forced” to portray their masculinity if they are male. He brings up the idea of the male’s role to marry and reproduce and care for the family by working in their job, which can lead to their suicide. This ultimately leads to Sam explaining that it is masculinity itself that is killing these people.
In another article, Frank Miniter, a contributor to Forbes, interviews Jennifer Siebel Newsom, a director and actress who had written a movie relating to the topic named The Mask We Live In. She talks about many of the things that we are used to do as humans have been feminized creating an unstable environment for men. She goes on to say that masculinity has become an unwanted trait and that men are committing suicide as those masculine traits kept them alive.
These views vary as they one seems to be saying that masculinity is killing men, while the other author is claiming that femininity is killing men. This issue is near and dear to my heart as I, the author, suffer from Clinical Depression. I have been abused as a child, along with having it genetically. What drove me to depression was a mixture of both of the issues. There were times where all I needed was a person to help me but I was told to be a man, but there were other times where I was, babied and I feel that femininity was pushed on me. I had fought both ideas, but I realize now that both are healthy and having two sides of the idea ensures that a person can be functioning. It is necessary to have a role-model of your gender, but it is also best to still be able to share feeling and be emotional and sensible. Having a balance of both creates the environment where a human can be raised correctly and ensures that they will be functioning.
Currently, there are many organizations helping to fight this issue such as The Calm Zone and the Suicide Protection Task.
This is an article I wrote and published in a local newspaper as a Muckraker type article. This is more of a discussion than an article in the large scope of things. Below are the sources used, so if anyone wants to provide imput, be my guest.