First the nerve-wracking session in the office, then an accidental bump on the street and now the paralyzing slow-moving rush hour traffic ... suddenly the time has come: Man clenches his fists, angrily steps on the gas pedal or roars seemingly for no reason. When peace-loving men suddenly "go wild", it's often not just pent-up aggression. Maybe a hidden depression is the cause.
Women's disease depression?
According to statistics, depression is a predominantly female phenomenon: About two to three times as many women as men develop it. However, the numbers say only half the truth in this case. "In principle, women go to doctors twice as often as men, " explains psychologist Frank Meiners from DAK. "Accordingly, they also appear more frequently in the statistics."
The number of suicides says something else: according to the Federal Statistical Office, it is about three times as high for men as it is for women. Although not every suicide goes back to a mental illness, but: "The large number of male suicides suggests that depression in advance many times are not recognized, " says Meiners. According to the DAK Health Report, mental illnesses are on the rise overall: in men, for example, the number of days lost due to mental illness has risen by 12.5 percent since 2000. Because of depressive disorders, they were even 26.2 percent more days off.
Men tick differently (off)
The reason that male depressions often go undetected is the supposedly atypical symptoms. Outbursts of rage, kamikaze maneuvers or violent assaults do not meet the classic signs of depression and therefore fall through the detection grid. As in other cases, men are different here than women. Instead of withdrawing dejected and desperate from the world, her impotence turns into anger. "Men tend to behave aggressively, because that is more like the typical male self-image than the quiet retreat, " explains the expert. "That makes the diagnosis more difficult."
When the body suffers for the soul
Not all depressed men, however, react by force. Since it is often difficult for them to talk about psychological problems, many transfer their complaints to the body. "Instead of complaining about the wounds on their souls, men talk about tangible, physical problems: Back pain, stomach or heart problems are often the physical expression of a mental illness, " Meiners says. Many depressive men also suffer from sexual problems or have less desire for sex. This often makes them particularly hard to deal with, as they fear for their masculinity.