Date of this Version
Current trends from the fields of mental health, criminal justice, and sociology suggest that despite men’s significant mental health problems (i.e. Moscick, 1995; Sue, Sue, & Sue, 2003; Greenfield & Snell, 1999; Follman, Aronsen, & Pan, 2013), they are much more reluctant to seek mental health help than women (Addis & Mahalik, 2003; Olfson & Marcus, 2010). Sociologists and psychologists have suggested that this disparity in help seeking can be largely explained by a cultural mismatch between the context of masculinity and the context of psychotherapy. Psychologists have called for a paradigm shift in the way clinical services are rendered to men, and have suggested that approaches informed by a positive psychology perspective may be appealing to men (i.e. Brooks, 2010; Kiselica, 2011; Kiselica & Englar-Carlson, 2010). The current study was inspired by this call, and was designed to explore men’s reactions to three different therapeutic approaches (cognitive, emotion-focused, & positive). Brief video vignettes exemplifying the approaches were developed, validated, and shown to male participants from large and small universities in the Midwest and Southeast U.S. in this randomized control design. A k-groups ANOVA, correlational analysis, and ANCOVA were used to determine what effect masculine gender role conflict and counseling approach had on help seeking attitudes, counselor social influence, expectations about counseling, and hope for counseling. Results indicated no significant relationships between counseling approach and help seeking attitudes, counselor social influence, expectations about counseling, or hope for counseling. However, it was found that certain patterns of gender role conflict were significantly negatively related to help seeking attitudes, and aspects of counselor social influence and expectations about counseling. Implications, future directions, and limitations of the study are discussed.
Advisor: Michael J. Scheel