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Men Suffer More From Recession Than Women




By Margarita Nahapetyan

Job insecurity makes men more depressed, stressed and anxious than women in the same situation, according to new findings by academics at the University of Cambridge.

The scientists said that the fear of losing a job, and in other words, the status of the earning money family member, leaves men miserable and stressed, though they claim to be less concerned about the situation. In spite of the fact that for many decades now there have been equal employment opportunities for both male and female, men still tend to stick to an old-fashioned and traditional belief that losing the job will jeopardize their masculinity, said Dr. Brendan Burchell, a member of a new study and sociologist at Cambridge University. In his opinion, men, in opposite to women, have several positive ways of defining themselves out of the workplace between finishing school and at the time of retirement.

Earlier this year the scientists have conducted a survey in which they analyzed the results of one study that included more than 300 employees in the United Kingdom, as well as data from the British ESRC funded Household Panel Survey, a huge source of information on thousands of people which has been collecting statistics from individuals in order to assess the effects of social and economic change since 1991.

In the study, stress levels in the male participants were measured by the means of a general health questionnaire. All the subjects had to give their answers to such questions as "Have you recently been considering yourself as a person that is worth for nothing?" or "Have you lately been able to concentrate your attention on whatever you are doing?" When the answers have been analyzed it became clear that majority of men have been going through depression, stress and anxiety in the present situation, but were more likely to hide their concerns. Men with risky jobs turned out to be more dismayed than their other counterparts who became redundant at the time of the global recession.

It was also found that the condition of depression and anxiety for the people who have become unemployed was wearing off in about half a year after losing a job, as individuals were getting adjusted to their new situation. However, the situation was quite different for people who had not lost their jobs but lived with a constant thought, worries and expectations that they might be fired any day. They all showed steadily worsening mental health for the period between one to two years.

Dr. Burchell said: "Given that most economic forecasts predict that the recession will be long with a slow recovery, the results mean that many people - and men in particular - could be entering into a period of prolonged and growing misery." Expressing his opinion on what the possible solutions could be, the scientist pointed out that there is a need to "re-stabilize the City," adding a mental health issue to the well-rehearsed economic arguments for shoring up the banking system.



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