An addiction to alcohol or drugs can be brought on by a variety of factors. According to experts, there is a complicated relationship between environmental triggers and genetic risk factors. However, men may be more at risk for drug or alcohol abuse due to gender-based expectations for what is considered “masculine” behaviour.
Men’s Attitudes Toward Substance Abuse Are Tolerant
Men typically have a more positive perception of substance use than women. Overindulging in alcohol and dabbling in illegal substances is frequently seen as a rite of passage or a sign of manliness.
Contrarily, women typically view substance use as a behaviour that is incompatible with their roles as caretakers and mothers. Additionally, they could believe that abusing drugs puts them at risk of sexual assault or makes other people think less favourably of them.
Men are more Susceptible to peer pressure because of Toxic masculinity
Toxic masculinity is the phrase used to describe socially manufactured notions of what it means to be a man that are detrimental to a guy’s overall wellness. This includes the idea that actions usually associated with women are weak and unwelcome.
Men may use addictive substances more frequently than they would on their own when under peer pressure to be accepted as a manly person. Peer pressure could cause someone who has a genetic predisposition or other risk factors for having a problem with drugs to become addicted.
In contrast, substance misuse was frequently first used as a form of self-medication for negative mental health symptoms by women who battled addiction. But stress from close relationships does often cause women to start using drugs or alcohol in unhealthy ways.
Men Are more likely to express their emotions externally
The human experience naturally includes emotions like fear, rage, disappointment, and frustration. However, for many people, it can be difficult to deal with these feelings in a healthy way.
Men are more inclined to externalise their negative feelings than women, according to a 2011 study that appeared in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology. This results in coercive, impulsive, and violent behaviour. This tendency was connected to a greater incidence of substance abuse disorders, according to the study, which examined the activities of over 43,000 people.
Externalising unpleasant emotions is dangerous because it can result in risky driving, physical altercations, and other self-harming behaviours, in addition to raising the risk of substance dependence. Troubled males may intentionally attempt suicide in extreme circumstances.
Social ties among men are typically weaker
The quality of one’s relationships with other people has a huge impact on their mental health. After a long day, you have someone to talk to among close friends. When you tell them about your issues, they provide a fair assessment of what’s bothering you. They offer defence against isolation and loneliness. They step in and offer assistance if they notice you are having trouble.
Sadly, men are less likely to have these kinds of solid social bonds than women are. When men get together, they often talk about things they both like to do instead of talking about feelings or problems they face every day.
Many guys find that their partner is their main emotional support system. Unfortunately, a man is much more likely to take drugs if his marriage ends. According to Psychology Today, men’s substance usage is frequently related to the strain of divorce or unemployment.
Men are frequently averse to seeking assistance
The disease of addiction worsens over time. It can be easy to miss the warning signs of a substance misuse issue at first. Men who have been raised to think they can handle their problems on their own may continue to deny they have a problem with drugs until a crisis forces them to get help. Veterans tend to be more reluctant to seek assistance for personal issues, which adds to the high prevalence of substance use disorders in this population.
Women, in contrast, are often more willing to ask for assistance when they are having issues in any aspect of their lives. If women are willing to get professional help, they are more likely to get it sooner, which puts them on the road to recovery before a crisis happens or an addiction is inculcated,