Male Stereotypes – A Deeper Examination

Stereotypes of masculine behavior shape men’s attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors (including those related to substance use, abuse and recovery) and push men in our culture to restrict their emotional responsiveness and incite competitive, aggressive, and self-reliant behavior. Here are some questions to consider:

Question: How do stereotypes of African American masculine roles hinder some men from seeking treatment? Hispanic masculine roles? White American masculine roles?

Question: Can you name a few traditional masculine values that are helpful or positive?

Question: How does racial discrimination affect the recovery efforts of men from ethnic minority backgrounds?

Concepts of masculinity affect different men to different degrees, but no man is unaffected by them or by the ways in which proper masculine behavior is defined at a societal level. Not all effects of masculine ideologies are negative, however, and traditional masculine values can be helpful or beneficial.

Also, although there are certain masculine values that are dominant in contemporary American culture and fairly common across cultures, some cultures may experience American culture and its masculine values differently because of racial discrimination. These experiences have a profound impact on the recovery efforts of men from ethnic minority backgrounds.

(Good et al. 2003)
Next week: Anger Management and the male dilemma