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The ‘Weakness Factor’: Men and Depression

I’ve found that it’s much easier for women to say, “I’m depressed,” than it is for men. This has more to do with what I call the “weakness factor,” in which men struggle to admit something’s wrong with them or acknowledge something they perceive as a sign of weakness.

Men get depressed just as women do. The biggest difference between the sexes is that men typically won’t admit to themselves, or anyone else, that they’re feeling down.

Asking for help? As Anthony Soprano would say, “forget about it.”

10 Comments to
The ‘Weakness Factor’: Men and Depression

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  1. Excellent article.

    I wonder if we knew how many men are depressed and not speaking about it, how much that would affect the accepted rate of two women to every one man.

    • Thanks, Catherine. In my work with men I find that a lot of guys are depressed and don’t even know it. Which just adds to the number who do know, but won’t admit it. -Kurt

  2. Who wouldn’t be depressed with all the trauma and bullshit we put up with on a daily basis. Ever feel like a rat trapped in a maze? Old saying no longer repeated cause its not PC. “Suicide is the most sincere form of self evaluation.” Only money can cure 80% of your problems.

    • Jack, You’re right that there’s a lot piled on all of us. And I know a lot of people can relate to your ‘rat trapped in a maze’ reference. I wonder with the suicide of Robin Williams this week if you’d reconsider your quote about suicide and statement about money solving problems. Obviously, this isn’t the case for everybody. -Kurt

  3. I wouldn’t say it’s much easier for women to say they’re depressed. There are plenty of women who also suffer in silence.

  4. Claire, It has been in my experience. I’ve found for the most part that women more easily and readily admit emotional and mental struggles than men. But you’re right that many women also suffer in silence. -Kurt

  5. This article is ok for those new to male depression. However, what would be nice to find is information for those of us living years with a depressed male loved one. What is recommended when they won’t get treatment, when they seem to choose to live day after day, year after year with these depressed thoughts, that come and go or thoughts that death is the best thing for them? There are men like that, living day by day, not seeking treatment.

    • Good point. Some people need more than this. There may be more in-depth articles like what you’re seeking elsewhere on PsychCentral. If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, check out our website for more help — (our Counseling Men Blog has more articles). -Kurt

  6. There’s a simple reason for why men maintain frame, women despise weak men. If women were attracted to men who displayed any form of weakness or submissiveness then men could be 100% honest to women. But women cannot help what they are attracted to or repulsed by, as redpillschool teaches ‘attraction is amoral’ and as it happens they see depressed men as weak. Men who want a relationship but battle with depression basically must overcome it BEFORE approaching women. It is better if she does not know because at some point she will use it against you or to reconsider whether you’re a good catch: see the law of hypergamy. I have took this to the nth degree and physically avoid all women outside of my immediate professional or social circle.

    • Malexis, I don’t believe that’s true for all women. I know women who are more understanding than what you describe. Sorry to hear you’ve decided to avoid them. -Kurt



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