The suicide gap: Why men are more likely to kill themselves

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  1. Sharon

    This article contains good information and resources. As a mother of a son who died by suicide I would love to see these same experts and resources turn their expertise and research experience towards what I believe to be perhaps the biggest, darkest secret attached to suicide and the rising epidemic of it … MEDICATION!! The medication itself which is often prescribed as the save-all tool of treatment can help to contribute to suicide. This phenomena is under-reported and under-researched. Little or no data is collected on this. Prescription medication – whose packaging itself includes disclaimers of the adverse effects – can be, has been and is the culprit in an unknown % of suicide and suicide attempts. If we are going to tackle this growing epidemic head-on … let’s look at ALL potential contributing factors.

    • Paul

      I’m sorry for your loss and in this world, being a man does kinda suck but your son shouldn’t feel like a failure. I know I’m not superman but I don’t discriminate. It’s hard to trust someone if you want to have to talk to someone. I have experienced suicidal thoughts myself and I’ve talked to someone about it despite being a man myself. Your son isn’t alone on this and shouldn’t have to be. Remember this, I’m only 21 and not 47. It doesn’t matter how old you are, people will try to attack you anyway they could.

      • Sam

        Men try the more lethal way to end themselves
        Women try the less lethal ways that even if worked have a higher chance of being saved

        Also sorry for anyone who has suffered from a loved one dying I’ve had my teacher and close friends turn dark and some ended badly with their life gone or other hurt

    • John

      I’m so sorry to hear about that. I agree medication is a real problem in many cases. I was prescribed this stuff in the 90s when I was a moderately depressed teenager. I became suicidal after trying the pills. I stopped and told the doctor. They refused to hear me and said the suicidal feelings were proof I needed the pills, and I had to try again. So I did, and again the same feeling. The doctors still refused to listen and were very condescending about it. A few years later all the warnings started getting added to the boxes saying exactly what I’d been trying to tell these pigheaded doctors.

  2. frank

    maybe the suicide rate is so high because of the gender bias faced by men in our family court system….maybe we need to seek out that large elephant in the room and address/confront it head on.

    • Jesse Garcia

      100% agreed!!!! Maybe if the family courts would stop ripping families apart for their shareof the cash cow. Many men would live and thrive even in the most poverty stricken areas, why? Because they have meaning and don’t have a money hungry court system forcing young men and women to grow up without fathers.

  3. sam plover

    I think if Psychiatry was not the model it is today, where every behaviour or word or human emotion is diagnosed as mental illness, which is worse than having a criminal record, more people would want to talk to someone.
    The pills dished out, the silly diagnosis themselves cause more harm than good.
    The problem is if any man mentions suicide, his feelings are validated by being able to ‘hold’ him. We need a system where much of human distress or thoughts, feelings are not made into pathological issues, but human issues.
    Now everyone has to pretend they are superhuman. It helps to be in powerful positions since then you can hide by control.
    Stigma is reignited by just talking about stigma. The very people that talk about reducing stigma are flaming fires. Stigma exists because of the silliest diagnosis. The man who wants to commit suicide does not need a diagnosis.
    He does not even need control or pills. Those pills are the next biggest lie to the DSM.
    Even the doctors don’t believe in that model. Suicide has always been around and is on the rise. It is not against the law.
    It hurts families. But we can’t fix it with current models of psychiatry. The current model stinks and ruins lives forever.
    The best fix is a close friend, but even they cannot prevent what is felt as a tragedy by those left behind.
    It is extremely dangerous to prescribe any pills to a person in crisis. It is a well known fact that they do not work. Feelings are in movement, people grow, change is happening until we die. Diagnosis is useless because of the fluid nature of life.

    We know by our intellect that psychiatry as a current model will not survive.
    Intellect and a belief system and education are worlds apart.
    Psychiatry needs to let the pen go and identify and open up to their equal which is a human being in pain across from them. They cannot stop a suicide anyway, so why not simply become a mensch. But then that is a personality thing and cannot be taught.

  4. Charles

    The problem is that even when men reach out for help they get shouted down by everyone around them.. and now the world post 2014 has just gotten cruler and meaner and only getting worse as society divides more… even my parents have been turned against me and no one seems to care about anyone else even when your desperately trying to reach out for help…

  5. Jay

    I get sick every time people call depression a mental Illness……I am depressed because I was raped when I was a 3 year old boy, not because my brain is diseased! That’s why I don’t care to seek any help.

    • Tyler

      I totally understand. Your mad, your angry and the stupid label society wants to put on you doesn’t fit. When I first spoke out about my abuse life just got worse but it’s the only way to heal your sole. We as men need to listen to each other and not be judgmental or afraid

  6. Tyler

    Family court in this country is literally killing men. It’s destroying children lives and not only allowing women to abuse men but seems to encourage it. The lack of equality is a very depressing state of affairs. Just a small piece of evidence to thus fact is the brochure for a protection order. Yes it says these laws apply to men in the last sentences of the brochure but to look at he pictures of the 4 females of the cover and then read the brochure it’s hard to get a sense these laws apply for men. 25 year of 50/50 domestic abuse but not one shelter for men and children in this country

  7. Gary Warburton

    Could it be you never hear about the attempts at suicide that men make.

  8. Bently

    Really? You are not sure why men end their lives at a certain age? At any moment my Male pattern baldness genes could kick in, making progressing in my career or finding a wife extremely difficult, and no one will care, and if I did end my life, I would be too ashamed to let that be the reason. Get serious.

    • Mr Paquet

      Absolutely agree with this. I would never take my own life, but this is the only thing that made me consider it

  9. Zipzap

    Many men are topping themselves because they live in a society that keeps crapping all over them, and telling them that they are evil and responsible for everything that goes wrong in the world, yet it keeps expecting these same men to put their noses to the grindstone and do all the heavy lifting. Add in anti-male laws and divorce courts and a constant diet of misandry in the media and popular culture to the mix for added effect.

    It’s a case of having all responsibilities, but no rights and no respect.

    We keep endlessly talking about the problem of male suicide but then we have situations like this:

    “People are always contacting me, like ‘I need some help, but I can’t pay,’ and I’m handcuffed, there’s no one to send them to,”

    If we were truly serious about beginning to address the problem, then we would find a way to make sure that men get the help and therapy they need without worrying about whether they can pay or not.

  10. AKATA

    Thank you… I’m sitting here right now targeted by my own self pity. This gives some hope.

  11. miisha

    For men the cause is not just depression but situational depression. The term is called FCDD. “family court disenfranchised disorder.” Family court literally destroys many mens lives

    For teenage boys and girls the cause is not just depression but situational depression. The term is called NADD or NFD. “Never adopted disorder,” or “no father disorder.” Children born out of wedlock have no rights, hence the term illegitimate, and 70 % of children who grow up without fathers lived destroyed lives

    all though these terms are made up, they describe the matters more accurately

  12. Jayden

    The sad thing in life for men is this: Men will almost forever think that we can’t cry, we can’t show our vulnerabilities, we can’t show any sad or depressed feelings to the world because we’ll feel like we’re going to be made fun of, insulted, mentally abused, etc. Us men feel the need to always be tough, no matter what happens, and sometimes we can do that,
    some of us can’t keep it up like that our whole lives. It’s saddening to know that so many men feel this way, including me, feeling like we can do it, but then figuring out later that all the things that we’ve done were slowly destroying ourselves our whole lives. We then feel like we’re misunderstood, misused, left to die on the inside. It’s hard to deal and cope with, and most of us hate the fact that we have to feel like a “man” in order for us to feel better about ourselves.

  13. Orion314

    This idea that men have a safe place to report suicidal feelings is insane. Try telling a doctor or a priest you are considering chewing on a gun barrel, taking an O.D. , or hanging your self, and you’ll have have a SWAT team kicking down your door before you know it. There is no privacy or confidentiality.

  14. Pete

    That age gap 40-60 …..because after 50 , the second chances that youth used to provide ….. ARE GONE . fyi = turned 50 2/12/19

  15. Sara Finders

    Thank you this help me on my speech to my class in my english 11 class it was quite interesting really.

    • student123

      Can i ask what you were talking about specifically in your English speech in class.

  16. student123

    doing an essay on suicide prevention and wondered if anyone could help me get some good statistics and help me with specific cases of suicide and ways of preventing suicide.

  17. Althea

    Dr. Whitley notes that one theory why the suicide rate is so high in the 40 to 60 age group is because that’s an age where many men become unemployed or divorced.

    I think one reason for the sharp increase in midlife suicides and the surging number of midlife divorces are due to a common, under-recognized, young-onset dementia called frontotemporal dementia (FTD), whose onset is often called a “midlife crisis” or misdiagnosed as a psychiatric disorder, usually depression, anxiety or late-onset bipolar disorder. Unmonitored, unmedicated patients drink excessively and take drugs in order to feel better leading others to think they have turned into alcoholics.

    This disease destroys morals, empathy and inhibitions NOT memory or intellect so it goes undetected.

    These guys suddenly leave their decades-long marriage to chase young girls due to the hypersexual component of the disease. The wives divorce them. They spend lots of money and end up bankrupt.

    They are fired for poor job performance due to loss of executive skills, or they are fired for inappropriate behavior such as swearing, stealing, sexual harassment or angry outbursts.

    These guys experience wild mood swings becoming euphoric or enraged one moment and very sad the next. I think they kill themselves in the depressive state.

    Over 1/2 of the behavioral variant people start committing crimes for the first time in their lives such as shoplifting, embezzling and traffic violations, including road rage. I think studies should be done on middle-aged men with no violent history who suddenly attack and/or kill their wives. Family members have reported, “he acted like a man possessed” and “never in her wildest dreams would she thought he was capable of that.”

    I think they kill themselves in a depressed state, but kill others in a manic, enraged fury.

  18. Mark

    Well being single and alone all the time which unfortunately may have a lot to do with it, especially for those without a love life.

    • Simin

      That where social media is lot to blame as women have unrealistic demands of men.lots of lonely men without a love life passed over for some guy with no personality and gym body etc.

  19. Frank

    The real res on that men kill themselves is because the Canadian family law system….discriminates against fathers.

    No one will touch this issue because the family law rules were written by right wing feminists….

    Only deep thorough research will expose this.
    The rate of fathers commiting suicide due to the abuse they suffer in the family court system could be as high as 90% of male suicide’s directly linked to this problem.
    It is not a problem that is isolated to only Canada…its a world wide epidemic.

  20. Chris Kelly

    I think this article avoids the elephant in the room that is family courts that discriminate against men, and encourage predatory behavior in women.

    • Kevin

      The problem is not the Family Courts but the Female Plaintiff Attorneys that educate women on how a Domestic Violence Protection Order DVPO claim will reward them with possession of the Home, Custody and Child Support. The attorney of course is rewarded with high fees.
      The father is acceptable colleteral damage. Sorry if you are a father who’s life has been destroyed by these tactics, experiencing isolation and the feeling of being victimised.

      It was intentionally done.

      Its a Booming Industry.

  21. student 288

    hi i am working on a project i was wondering if i could ask you some questions about it. thank you

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