Top 5 Signs That a Man Is Depressed
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October 11, 2014
By A. Lee,  Featured Columnist

Depression is a growing problem. In the US, it is estimated that  1 out
of every 10 people in is depressed, according to the Centers for Disease
Control.  Moreover, "major depressive disorder" is the most common
disability for Americans between the ages of 15 and 44, according to
the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

There was a time when experts believed that women were more likely
to become depressed than men.   But that early rule of thumb about
depression is being looked at in a different way.  Now, more and more
experts believe that the lower perceived numbers of depressed men
may be due to the differences in the way that men express depression,
not in the rates of actual depression.   

This new view is taking into account the possibility that, we,  as a
society, do not count more men as depressed because we simply fail to
recognize the signs.

Men, it turns out, express being depressed in very different way  than
women.  Women display the “classic” symptoms of depression which ,
according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders,
include feelings of sadness or emptiness, anxiety, pessimism,
worthlessness, hopelessness, guilt and  withdrawal from activities they

Men have these symptoms too. But they
display them and other
symptoms in ways that most people would not recognize as depression.

What Triggers Depression in Men?

According to a 1996 study led by Dr. S.V. Cochran and F.E. Rabinowitz,
men who experience grief or loss are more at risk for depression. Grief
is more likely to send a man into depression than a woman.  Other
research suggests that men who suffer an absent or loss bond with
their father are more likely to fall into depression.

Job loss, loss of a relationship, sexual inadequacy  and aging are all
natural triggers for episodes of depression in men.

What are the unusual signs that men display when they are depressed?
Here is the Top 5 list, based on medical studies:

Aggression and Anger.  Men who are depressed can act out
aggressively. Violence towards women they are involved with,
aggression at work, aggression towards other male friends.  

Aggression can take the form of verbal abuse, physical abuse, invading
the boundaries of others ---that internet troll who sex shames someone
or that man who publishes photos –all these can indicate depression.
(Read more about
how anger affects a man's health.)

Escape Behaviors. Escape Behaviors include acting out fantasies,
such as having affairs or simply having multiple sex partners in a short
period of time. Sounds like fun? Yeah, but it  can also mean a man is
medicating himself against depression.

Risky Behaviors. Depression can make you feel numb inside. To
counteract the numbness, men –and women –who are  depressed may
seek risky behaviors to literally “jolt” themselves out of the numbness
of depression.

Thus, a depressed man may drive too fast, drink too much, experiment
with drugs, endanger himself financially by gambling, engage in
Extreme Sports.

Denial. In contrast to women, who are more likely to recognize
and readily acknowledge that they are depressed, men will do almost
anything to avoid admitting that they are depressed. Depression, to
many men, is an admission of vulnerability or weakness and thus an
attack on their masculinity.

Shut Down.  Men who are depressed often shut down their
emotions. If you are a friend of a depressed man, you may have come
to think of him as eerily quiet, inexpressive, closed up.  But behind the
wall of silence, men who are depressed are actually building walls of
defense around their feelings of vulnerability.   They build walls of
stony silence to appear impenetrable.


You Get Up at Night to Eat.  Studies have found that stress-related
depression is one of the leading causes of night time eating syndrome.
Read more.)

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Men who are depressed often express their
depression as anger.