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Source: (consider it) Thread: There's a silent epidemic of middle aged men suicide
no prophet's flag is set so...

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This has come up within the decade several times, recently:Why men commit suicide (National Post, Nov 2016). Middle aged men commit suicide more often than any other age or demographic group. More than teens, which is the group most prominent in the media. Suicide is also more discussed after the controversial release of the Netflix™ release of "13 Reasons Why", though that was not about the age nor gender group most at risk

I was triggered to post this when I heard a radio program on CBC Radio One; We need to talk about male suicide

I am in the demographic. The things I see is that men of my generation were goal-directed: get educated, get work, marry, children, accrue enough assets to consider that it might be possible to retire. But at the same time, some of your friends divorce, die, move away, and the social circle shrinks. The children grow up and move away, they have other priorities and are pursuing their goals.

I realize at the same time that middle aged men, particularly if they are from the privileged racial group are, are thought of as having relatively little to complain about, with the world formed for them and by them.

I wonder what others think. Some of us are in the demographic, some will have fathers and grandfathers in it. What is missing in society and life that middle aged men are the largest groups of suicides?

[ 09. May 2017, 19:50: Message edited by: no prophet's flag is set so... ]

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mr cheesy
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I think for many middle-age is the time when you realise that you're never going to achieve your goals, you're stuck in a job that isn't going anywhere, you're living to pay off debt etc.

I'm not sure why this affects men more than women, but suspect it is something about a lack of support networks for many men.

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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
Middle aged men commit suicide more often than any other age or demographic group. More than teens, which is the group most prominent in the media.

The media focus is probably because suicide is a larger piece of the overall mortality "pie" for teens. According to the National Institute of Health suicide is the second most common cause of death for Americans aged 15-24, but it's #4 for those in the 35-44 age bracket and #5 for those aged 45-54. (Canadian figures may differ slightly, but I'd bet not by much.) In other words, while suicide may be a bigger problem for middle-aged men than it is for teenagers, heart disease and malignant neoplasms (a.k.a. cancer) are a bigger problem for middle aged men than suicide.

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Anglican_Brat
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An article I read recently stated that unhappiness is a result of expectations exceeding actual reality.

One reason for unhappiness is that we expect more than any other generation. Life in the Middle Ages for example, sucked, if you were a peasant, you would be struggling to make ends meet, and you were lucky to make it past forty. But if you expect that life was nasty, brutish and short, I imagine you would appreciate any meager joy or happiness that comes your way.

One thing to keep in mind and that keeps me somewhat sane is to realize that everyone is pretty much in the same boat, i.e. the human condition. Life can incredibly suck for all of us, sometimes, and life can have beautiful moments, from time to time. Frankly speaking, none of us, are ever perfectly happy, at all times in all places. I am trying to learn to stop envying people who are more fortunate than myself, because it's not true that their lives are necessarily more wonderful than mine.

Perhaps if we collectively remind ourselves, of that, we could reduce some of the unhappiness, and by extension reduce suicide.

[ 09. May 2017, 20:14: Message edited by: Anglican_Brat ]

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Gramps49
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The US National Institute of Health has noted that for the first time the death rate among white males has increased in the US while the death rates for other groups have either stayed steady or improved. They list the reason for the decrease as deaths from despair. Deaths from despair not only includes suicide but also increased alcohol and drug use among and their attendant diseases

I also think our obesity epidemic is playing a role in the increase in the death rate. Again, the NIH says obesity is the second leading cause of preventable deaths, behind tobacco. Last year there were 300,000 deaths due to obesity.

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no prophet's flag is set so...

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I think for many middle-age is the time when you realise that you're never going to achieve your goals, you're stuck in a job that isn't going anywhere, you're living to pay off debt etc.

I'm not sure why this affects men more than women, but suspect it is something about a lack of support networks for many men.

This might morph into more of an AS topic(?) I have been more successful than I expected, without debts, work how I want or not as a self employed business, and still experience touches of ennui, acedia, weltschmertz or whatever you wish to call it. Can I retain a sense of personal wholeness and integrity as I age? There's something developmental I think as productive years don't give way to wisdom, but to being ignored.

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Lamb Chopped
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... though it's possible to get some personal growth out of being ignored, as I've learned in the past ten years. Mostly in the area of humility, but also in realizing that the church (life, whatever) can and will carry on without you.

Not that it's loads of fun realizing that. [Razz]

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cliffdweller
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I think for many middle-age is the time when you realise that you're never going to achieve your goals, you're stuck in a job that isn't going anywhere, you're living to pay off debt etc.

I'm not sure why this affects men more than women, but suspect it is something about a lack of support networks for many men.

I suspect it has to do with men (in general) finding their core identity in work, while women (in general) finding primary identity in relationships. So a woman might find herself in a sucky dead-end job but find satisfaction in her family life

No, no really, I don't have any particular middle-aged woman stuck in a sucky dead-end job in mind... [Paranoid]

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
This might morph into more of an AS topic(?) I have been more successful than I expected, without debts, work how I want or not as a self employed business, and still experience touches of ennui, acedia, weltschmertz or whatever you wish to call it. Can I retain a sense of personal wholeness and integrity as I age? There's something developmental I think as productive years don't give way to wisdom, but to being ignored.

Without getting too personal (for one thing I know nothing about you), I think many experience middle age as a tightrope walk where various things are being thrown at you and you are fighting to keep from falling off.

The stuff comes from different directions and depends on the person. I wouldn't say that it was illegitimate angst based on greed and envy as much as the pressures of life.

For me the question is less about why people feel it and more about why it pushes middle aged men in particular towards suicide.

I'd also put into the mix that kids leaving home often seems to have a big impact on men.

[ 10. May 2017, 06:52: Message edited by: mr cheesy ]

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by cliffdweller:
I suspect it has to do with men (in general) finding their core identity in work, while women (in general) finding primary identity in relationships. So a woman might find herself in a sucky dead-end job but find satisfaction in her family life

I can't say whether that's a real thing or just perception. Clearly there are lots of women doing low paid and part-time work in order to balance their family commitments (I think that's a proven fact).

But I'm not sure it is a given that women more easily or readily find their identity in relationships.

It seems to me that both men and women live dislocated and isolated lives, frequently moving jobs (and locations), having few strong relationships outside of facebook (where the relics of relationships past lurk but usually do not survive on their own).

I think it is a bit of a myth that women who do a lot for their family are engaged with others at the school-gate etc. My observation is that these things are very often superficial.

The more "professional" one is, the more one tends to be "married to the job", but I'm not sure that's something which neatly follows a binary division between men and women.

quote:
No, no really, I don't have any particular middle-aged woman stuck in a sucky dead-end job in mind... [Paranoid]
Just as a footnote which might not be related to this train of thought; I was thinking the other day about how the community where I live was impacted by mining and other heavy industrial work. The men worked long dirty hours underground or in other crappy jobs. The women often worked at the pithead as well as most of the other household chores. Due to various work, health and environmental reasons, at the peak in the 19 century they didn't tend to live much beyond their 40s.

And yet somehow they seemed to persevere through the crap. You don't tend to hear of suicides (although maybe the terms were different and people were over medicating on alcohol). You can't get much more of a dead-end job than being a 19 century miner, and yet they had something to live for.

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Ian Climacus

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Farmers are often cited as the unknown here:

From a 2014 article:
quote:
Recent research by Newcastle University and Griffith University compares suicide rates of farmers in NSW and Queensland.

The standardised suicide rate over a 10 year period in NSW and QLD was 10 per 100,000.

In Queensland:

* the male farmer suicide rate was 37 per 100,000;
* the female farmer suicide rate was 10 per 100,000;
* and the combined suicide rate was 29 per 100,000.

In NSW:

* the male farmer suicide rate was 18 per 100,000;
* the female farmer suicide rate was 2 per 100,000;
* and the combined suicide rate was 14 per 100,000.

The report concludes that suicide rates are over two times higher in Queensland than in New South Wales and the incidence of farmer suicide varies across regions.

They have a tough life.

I'm 40 and given I've had suicidal thoughts from my 20s [mental health issues] I worry about them becoming pronounced. I clearly have a reason for them, so perhaps I'm not best to speculate on others' reasons, but people have told me [and I've read in articles] that when life seems too tough, or when they are in a hole economically, they feel as if the family would be better off without them. I find that incredibly sad.

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Baptist Trainfan
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A British article giving reasons why suicide rates are high among farmers.
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Eutychus
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hosting/

In view of the topic, please note this excerpt from our Guidelines:

quote:
The Ship is not an adequate stand-in for counselling services. Posts which seek to elicit such responses are strongly discouraged, and repeated posts along those lines will be deleted.

Neither is the Ship an appropriate or adequate venue for suicidal ideations. Do not waste precious time by posting here. If you suspect that your feelings of hopelessness or despair are more than just a reaction to a difficult time in your life or normal spiritual angst, or you think about suicide, then you need professional help, immediately, and you can't get that here.

The Ship wants to see all of you happy and healthy, and it is our responsibility to recognise the limitations of this medium.



Thank you for your cooperation.

/hosting

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Schroedinger's cat

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This topic is very close to my heart. I think the problem may well be that the rate has simply not gone down as others have.

So female suicide rates have decreased - largely because women have been enabled to talk about their feelings more with others, and to get help. Similarly, the incidence of teen suicide has reduced, I suspect, due to much better social support in schools. All of these areas have reduced.

What is more, improvements in lifestyles have reduced the incidence of heart problems quite so early. And Health and Safety has substantially reduced the number of industrial incidents (as well as the outsourcing of anything dangerous to 3rd world countries). I wonder how many "industrial accidents" were simply ways of men taking their lives in ways that would not look suspicious.

So against all of this, the rate of suicide may have stayed broadly similar, because the core problems are not resolved. When clearly reported, it looks as shocking as it is.

And I think the reason there is an upper limit (and to some extent a lower limit) is because other things take the lead - not because the incidence of suicide was lower.

I think it is a shocking critique of our society that so many people who should be the prime members of this society (gender, age) feel that their life within this is not worth. What does that say about our entire society? What does that say about us?

And it is not just about Western Society. Why do ISIS find it easy to recruit suicide bombers? Because so many within those societies feel that their only hope for a role is to kill themselves.

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Schroedinger's cat:


And it is not just about Western Society. Why do ISIS find it easy to recruit suicide bombers? Because so many within those societies feel that their only hope for a role is to kill themselves.

I don't think this is the same thing at all. IS and other religious extremists who use these tactics don't appeal to people who are suicidal (in the way we normally understand it), they appeal to those who are searching for meaning and who think there is glory and honour in dying for this idea.

It isn't that they've given up on life, it is more that they've so wholeheartedly bought into the IS theology and philosophy that ending their life is just part of the programme. It isn't that they think their life is worthless, quite the reverse.

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Moo

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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican_Brat:
An article I read recently stated that unhappiness is a result of expectations exceeding actual reality.

Many years ago I had a conversation with a teenage daughter. She said there must be something wrong with her because she wasn't happy most of the time. I told her that most people are not happy most of the time. Sometimes they are actually unhappy, and sometimes they are neither happy nor unhappy. This is the normal state of affairs for most people.

Years later she told me that this was one of the most helpful things I ever said to her.

Moo

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Martin60
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Testosterone is a bugger. It drives us. Narrows us. Focuses us. And when it's done its job, one way or another, discards us.

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quetzalcoatl
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quote:
Originally posted by Martin60:
Testosterone is a bugger. It drives us. Narrows us. Focuses us. And when it's done its job, one way or another, discards us.

I think there's something in this. The waning of testosterone is a big challenge, as fucking and working are replaced by shopping.

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no prophet's flag is set so...

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quote:
Originally posted by Schroedinger's cat:
I think it is a shocking critique of our society that so many people who should be the prime members of this society (gender, age) feel that their life within this is not worth. What does that say about our entire society? What does that say about us?

You have named something central I think. The radio program I linked discussed this, and did not offer much. They did say that men as a group don't do very well with specific focus on feelings, but do better with shared activities. I've felt that church can offer some of this, but men's groups are waning here.

The Canadian prairies have men curling together (the Scottish derived sport of sliding 44lb rocks down ice sheets to targets), golfing, and sitting around in rural coffee shops "coffee row" as it is called. I'm also reminded of the American sit-com "Cheers" where mostly men sat around in a bar/pub.

But I feel there is something deeper here, with feeling valueless and society's structure, which you noted.

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Brenda Clough
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Yet other groups (persons of color, women, transgendered folks) have been on the bottom of the totem pole for decades -- underpaid, low-status, always the bridesmaid never the bride. They seem to bear up under the misery. Are white men's suicide rates merely rising to match up to, say, black men's?

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
Yet other groups (persons of color, women, transgendered folks) have been on the bottom of the totem pole for decades -- underpaid, low-status, always the bridesmaid never the bride. They seem to bear up under the misery. Are white men's suicide rates merely rising to match up to, say, black men's?

In the US, higher. which lends credence to the failure to meet expectations theory.

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If it's not here soon, I might be done
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rolyn
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# 16840

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quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
I think there's something in this. The waning of testosterone is a big challenge, as fucking and working are replaced by shopping.

Yes, all of that.
And, as was muted further up thread, I think a father's attachment to his children is much underestimated, (not least by himself). Throw divorce into the mix and I guess you are building up a factor base. But then stastically it could be those without kids who succumb to feelings of life being meaningless. Dunno.

It is hard to go detective on this as you often get people who have every reason to live taking their own life, whereas those struggling do not. Saw a bit of that when involved in farming, fortunately mostly the latter.

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Lamb Chopped
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A lot of people live for their children. Which can be a problem if and when those children decide to move in major directions their parents hadn't counted on.

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Er, this is what I've been up to (book).
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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
I think a father's attachment to his children is much underestimated, (not least by himself).

Given that expression of this attachment isn't a strength of the typical British male, it is natural that it would be.

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So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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rolyn
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Probably got our Victorian ancestors to thank for that. Distant fathers, children 'seen and not heard' and so on.

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Change is the only certainty of existence

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cliffdweller
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# 13338

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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
I think a father's attachment to his children is much underestimated, (not least by himself).

Given that expression of this attachment isn't a strength of the typical British male, it is natural that it would be.
Attachment is not synonymous with identity though although they may be related

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Zappa
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It may be white privilege, but

  • Self belief is so wrapped up in career and career advancement ... either/or both/and crumble
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in testosterone and, believe it or not, body image
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in children and their love
  • Self belief is so wrapped up, for liberal/progressives, in the hope oif a a fairert. more egalitarian society, which certain international events are pissing on,
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in the hope of a future, which is dissolving not only with the afore-hinted political events, but the eternal messages of global devastation

Perhaps that'll do for now.

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mr cheesy
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# 3330

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But Zappa, if suicide is related to white privilege (I'm not really following why that's the case unless your point is that it encourages superiority beliefs of white people which end up being impossible for most white people) why would it affect men more than women?

It could be true, it just seems rather vaguely linked steps to me.

[ 12. May 2017, 07:08: Message edited by: mr cheesy ]

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Cottontail

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Something that seems to be making a difference locally: Men's Sheds

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Cottontail:
Something that seems to be making a difference locally: Men's Sheds

FWIW, I think there are more support networks for retired men than there are for those aged 40-60.

Allotments, for example, seem to be a pretty good safety net for older men (in particular) and seem to be havens of tolerance and diversity. But they're usually mostly populated my retired men.

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Zappa
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# 8433

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
But Zappa, if suicide is related to white privilege (I'm not really following why that's the case unless your point is that it encourages superiority beliefs of white people which end up being impossible for most white people) why would it affect men more than women?

It could be true, it just seems rather vaguely linked steps to me.

I think because men have been more privileged than women ... and when the emperor notices his clothes ...

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Cottontail

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# 12234

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Good point. And interesting too. I don't have any facts and figures on this, but I seem to recall being told at a training session a number of years ago that after 16-24 year old males, the second highest suicide rate was among elderly widowed men. If you are right that there are actually some good support systems in place for them, and more than previously, then it may well be that the demographic has since slipped to a slightly younger age group.

In my area, suicide is a particular risk for middle-aged male farmers. Thanks to mechanisation, what used to be once a sociable profession can be very isolating now, with the farmer working alone for most of the week. Add to that the following pressures: endless governmental paperwork; finances which have huge figures both as income and as outgoings; volatile markets which mean you could go bankrupt next week; children who don't want to take on the farm in their turn; wives who (often of necessity) work away from the farm; physical distance from doctors, support groups, etc.; and a practical and 'manly' culture which believes in just getting on with things.

ETA: replying to Mr Cheesy above.

[ 12. May 2017, 08:19: Message edited by: Cottontail ]

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cliffdweller
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# 13338

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quote:
Originally posted by Zappa:
quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
But Zappa, if suicide is related to white privilege (I'm not really following why that's the case unless your point is that it encourages superiority beliefs of white people which end up being impossible for most white people) why would it affect men more than women?

It could be true, it just seems rather vaguely linked steps to me.

I think because men have been more privileged than women ... and when the emperor notices his clothes ...
Definitely so. Women & people of color have obviously made demonstrable strides in the last several decades (the last 110 days notwithstanding). So, while we still experience discriminatory treatment and dismissive attitudes, there is a feeling of community-- that we are "in this together"-- see the Women's March. When we see setbacks-- as we do-- whether that's related to racism/sexism or whether it's part of the vast transfer of wealth from the middle to upper classes that has taken place, we tend to see it as part of that ongoing struggle that has been a part of our history for centuries. And for most of us, even as we see our situation now as more restricted or "less than" it ought to be, we still see our situation as much improved compared to what it was for prior generations.

For white men, the experience of loss is (I"m assuming) far more recent. So I think it's easier to misattribute the losses they have experienced as related to affirmative action/ tearing down racism/sexism, rather seeing the relationship to income inequality/ transfer of wealth. And they are more apt to see their current circumstances as diminished from that of prior generations of white men.

I'm not a white man, so that's my guess. ymmv

[ 12. May 2017, 14:08: Message edited by: cliffdweller ]

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Brenda Clough
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And, especially for older people, there is the 'it's always been this way' feeling. Why must it change? Why can I no longer use the N word, as my father and grandfather did? Why can I no longer expect women and persons of color to defer to me? They always used to! Why can I no longer count on making the most money, having the most status? It's not fair.
If you have always had privilege since birth, to lose it is painful. They've been doing surveys about the last election, and one of the markers of a Trump voter is agreeing with the statement, "I feel like a stranger in my own country."

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rolyn
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# 16840

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quote:
Originally posted by Zappa:
I think because men have been more privileged than women ... and when the emperor notices his clothes ...

Possibly, depends how we measure such things. Don't know that our hard labouring forefathers who got called up to fight in wars would have called themselves privileged. Don't suppose many had time nor inclination to consider suicide. Not to mention the fact that a good few were dead before retirement age, or shortly after it.

I do know what you mean though Zappa. The apparently outdated beliefs and values system of the modern day white male, particularly from rich Countries, is being hit hard by rapid and far-reaching economic and social changes.

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Liopleurodon

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# 4836

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I agree that there is a huge problem with male suicide and that we definitely should be targeting resources at at-risk guys. But before we go too deeply into the discussion about why men are so much unhappier than women, it's worth noting that women actually make a lot more attempts at suicide than men do. The reason why more men die is that the methods used by men are more likely to be lethal: guns instead of pills, for example. I don't know why that is.

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Doc Tor
Deepest Red
# 9748

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Around our way, it's leaping from bridges. Our local river has a high lethality on anyone entering it, and the bodies aren't usually recovered for at least a couple of weeks.

The local paper usually reports one or two a week, mostly men. That and the railways.

I have no answers, only questions.

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Anglican_Brat
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# 12349

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One reason offered is usually mentioned as to why women generally outlive men, women are able to form close, bonded relationships and community easier than men.

It is thought that men form their primary relationships through work. The problem is that work relationships can sometimes have a competitive edge to them. Are you really prepared to bare your soul to your co-worker who might screw you over for a promotion?

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Liopleurodon

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# 4836

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I will say that in the women I've known who've attempted suicide it has mostly been in a way that is open to possible survival. I'm not going to go with either "cry for help" or the less charitable "bid for attention" because I don't think that's really it - it's more that they seem to feel a need to leave it open to fate. They're not sure if they want to die or want to be jolted back into a desire to live.

I suspect that the thought processes of someone who shoots himself in the head are probably different. For whatever reason the people who do this are more determined that they are definitely not coming back. These people are much more likely to be men.

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Our God is an awesome God. Much better than that ridiculous God that Desert Bluffs has. - Welcome to Night Vale

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rolyn
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# 16840

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Guessing also that is un-macho to survive a suicide attempt, in particular having to explain it to your mates at a later date.

Fortunately, as I recall, this does not always apply.

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balaam

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# 4543

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quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
Guessing also that is un-macho to survive a suicide attempt, in particular having to explain it to your mates at a later date.

Having to explain is better than not being able to explain.

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Zappa
Ship's Wake
# 8433

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quote:
Originally posted by balaam:
quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
Guessing also that is un-macho to survive a suicide attempt, in particular having to explain it to your mates at a later date.

Having to explain is better than not being able to explain.
True, but it doesn't seem to be so when you're on the nearer to Adam and Eve that Four Riders of the Apocalypse side of the equation

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Schroedinger's cat

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# 64

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quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:
Guessing also that is un-macho to survive a suicide attempt, in particular having to explain it to your mates at a later date.

Fortunately, as I recall, this does not always apply.

This is important, and I have seen evidence that mens attempts at suicide tend to be more deadly, and more successful. The "shame" of failure is a significant aspect of this.

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Huia
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# 3473

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quote:
Originally posted by Zappa:
It may be white privilege, but

  • Self belief is so wrapped up in career and career advancement ... either/or both/and crumble
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in testosterone and, believe it or not, body image
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in children and their love
  • Self belief is so wrapped up, for liberal/progressives, in the hope oif a a fairert. more egalitarian society, which certain international events are pissing on,
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in the hope of a future, which is dissolving not only with the afore-hinted political events, but the eternal messages of global devastation

Perhaps that'll do for now.

Zappa, I don't understand why you're linking it to white privilege when if you Google the suicide stats for NZ the rate for Maori suicide, both women and men, is much higher than that for Pakeha*. (white people).

Also the highest rate is for men over 85, (which surprised me)while we have the highest rate for teen suicide in the developed world.

*I haven't checked rates for indigenous people in other countries, but I suspect they too may be higher.

I'm not denying that the factors you list affect rates of suicide in white men, just pointing out other groups have higher rates.

Huia

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rolyn
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# 16840

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Accepting that a loved one taking their own life, even in old age, is still upsetting for those left behind, it is however possible to understand a man,(or woman),committing suicide after the age of 85.

Only thing is it takes an inverted form of courage to take such action. A snatched wisdom I heard from someone a while back went -- "If you've got the courage to do that then you've got the courage to carry on".

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Change is the only certainty of existence

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North East Quine

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# 13049

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Originally posted by mr cheesy:

quote:
You don't tend to hear of suicides (although maybe the terms were different and people were over medicating on alcohol). You can't get much more of a dead-end job than being a 19 century miner, and yet they had something to live for.
Suicide was illegal in the C19th (and indeed until 1961) and those who committed suicide were buried without a full religious service. This gave families a strong incentive to have suicides regarded as "accidents" and doctors no doubt erred on the side of caution when certifying such deaths.
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Russ
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quote:
Originally posted by Zappa:
It may be white privilege, but

  • Self belief is so wrapped up in career and career advancement ... either/or both/and crumble
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in testosterone and, believe it or not, body image
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in children and their love
  • Self belief is so wrapped up, for liberal/progressives, in the hope oif a a fairert. more egalitarian society, which certain international events are pissing on,
  • Self belief is so wrapped up in the hope of a future, which is dissolving not only with the afore-hinted political events, but the eternal messages of global devastation

Perhaps that'll do for now.

You're batting about 50%, IMHO.

Yes it's about lack of hope for the future.

Yes it's to do with men's sense of self-worth being wrapped up in a career so that redundancy or retirement can take away what seems like the reason for living

No it's not much to do with swings to right or left in the body politic

No it's not really to do with being white.

Seems to me that it is partly tied up with the loss of status of the elderly in our society, who are no longer seen as wise. And the success of medicine in prolonging human life into a long downhill slope of decreasing capability and increasing dependency on others.

Our forefathers, or so the myth goes, continued to contribute wisdom and knowledge and practical skills, to the family and to society, until a short illness carried them off.

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no prophet's flag is set so...

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# 15560

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Yes, it's rather crap to have a million dollars, or a decent fund for retirement, but also fart all the time, find that discussing blood pressure and pills is the main topic with your peers, have to hand the mobile phone to a whipper snapper 45 year old to find some effing app, find the joy of sex has turned into the job of, and then a bird shits on that part of your where the bald spot in back is trying to meet the one in the front of your head.

It all sounds so trite and whiny to me. And the 30somethings in my life tell me which way the world wags its tail. Probably they're right. It wags where we don't want to look.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Huia:
Zappa, I don't understand why you're linking it to white privilege when if you Google the suicide stats for NZ the rate for Maori suicide, both women and men, is much higher than that for Pakeha*. (white people).

According to this website, the difference is fairly small, percentage wise.

quote:

Also the highest rate is for men over 85

Interesting. I wonder what the factor is, this is not in line with most countries.
quote:

*I haven't checked rates for indigenous people in other countries, but I suspect they too may be higher.

According to this link, the American Indigenous are also only slightly higher.
Canadian Indigenous, however, appear to have much greater rates.
quote:

I'm not denying that the factors you list affect rates of suicide in white men, just pointing out other groups have higher rates.

This is going to vary by culture. Failing expectation and the cultural pressure applied to it are going to be a factor, IMO and sort of IME.
This article supports that. So, in America, where white males have greater expectations placed upon them, they have higher suicide rates.

Couldn't find UK race related suicide stats, other than one about mental health patients.

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Schroedinger's cat

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# 64

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
Yes, it's rather crap to have a million dollars, or a decent fund for retirement, but also fart all the time, find that discussing blood pressure and pills is the main topic with your peers, have to hand the mobile phone to a whipper snapper 45 year old to find some effing app, find the joy of sex has turned into the job of, and then a bird shits on that part of your where the bald spot in back is trying to meet the one in the front of your head.

It all sounds so trite and whiny to me. And the 30somethings in my life tell me which way the world wags its tail. Probably they're right. It wags where we don't want to look.

But this isn't what it is about. Yes, some very well off and comfortable people are pathetic whining shits.

But some people in all sorts of situations suffer from depression, to a greater or lesser extent. Which is the main trigger for suicidal action*. And that is a mental health problem, that does not regard wealth or comfort.

Assuming that people kill themselves simply because they are "unhappy" with their lives is a fundamental misunderstanding. So maybe educate yourself before you risk offending people. It is a health issue. Rich people are no less vulnerable to MH problems than they are to any other health problem.

*Some may argue that it is a necessary condition in 95% of cases.

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