Depression in men looks different
Dear Dr. Gottlieb,I read your column regularly in the Philadelphia Inquirer and often the topic involves depression as it did today.(I also suffer from S.A.D. by the way but in Febrtuary) As often as depression is discussed in the media, I rarely hear anyone talk about how men can have extremely different symptoms of depression than women. My husband had become impossible to live with and I was to the point of filing for divorce. He was constantly angry, irritable and verbally abusive. While trying to enlist the aide of a friend of his to see if he could talk some sense into my husband, he asked if It was possible my husband was just depressed. Though he had been out of work for nearly a year with no prospects and, had been turned down several times for jobs he was well qualified for, the thought had never crossed my mind. The typical symptoms of depression; sadness, helplessness etc weren't there but I did a little research and was STUNNED to see that men often show depression in a different way with aggression, nit-picking, argumentativeness etc. I printed out this information and after yet another after-fight apology from him, gave him the list. Reading it, he cried. He took the information to his doctor and began taking an antidepressant. I got my husband back! I feel very lucky that my friend suggested depression because I would have never suspected it and it saddens me to think of how many relationships end because the males are being difficult due to depression and not just being a**holes as it appears on the surface. It would be very helpful if you would touch on the anger/irritability/abusiveness symptoms of depression in a future column. It was life-changing information for us and with the current economic situations that people are facing, I'm sure more and more families would find this insight useful. .