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Title: The association between socioeconomic status and mens' help seeking for psychological distress: The role of conformity to masculine norms and gender role conflict.
Author: Corker, Tanya
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2013
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Introduction: Previous research shows that men are less likely than women to access psychological services, even when they experience the same level of psychological or emotional distress. Therefore it is important to explore baniers to men's access to help and support. Previous research suggests that lower socioeconomic status negatively impacts the physical and psychological health of men. However, there is little research on how socioeconomic status affects mens' intentions to seek help when experiencing psychological distress. Previous research suggests that the more men confOlm to traditional masculine nOlms, the greater gender role conflict they experience and the less likely they are to seek help when experiencing psychological distress. This study therefore examines whether gender role conflict and conformity to masculine norms mediate any relationship between socioeconomic status and mens' intentions · towards seeking psychological help. Method: One hundred and seventy five men aged between 18-66 took pmt in an online survey. Occupation was used as the primary indicator of socioeconomic status and data on intentions to seek help was collected separately for formal and infOlmal sources of help. General linear models were fitted to examine whether intentions to seek help varied by indicators of socioeconomic status adjusting for potential confounders. Mediation using bootstrapping was used to examine whether conformity to masculine norms and gender role conflict mediated any relationship. Results: Intentions to seek informal help were found to be negatively associated with socioeconomic status but the picture for formal help seeking was more complex with unemployed men reporting the highest levels of intentions to seek help. The subscales of the measure of conformity to masculine nOlms indicating emotional control and self-reliance and the measure of gender role conflict indicating restrictive emotionality individually mediated the negative relationship between socioeconomic status and intentions to seek informal help. Conclusions: These findings suggest the need to pay further clinical and 112 I 't 11 1 theoretical attention to socioeconomic status, and particular aspects of gender role conflict (restrictive emotionality) and conformity to masculine norms (emotional control and self-reliance) and how they impact on help seeking behaviour in order to encourage men to access both informal arid formal sources of support when they experience psychological distress. 113
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available