Living (dys)regulated and alienated young masculinity—Young men’s embodied experiences of mental disorders and suicidality

…. Semistructured individual interviews were conducted with 13 young men who had sought professional help for mental disorders and suicidality. Grounded theory (GT) was used with a social constructivist perspective. …

The results comprise one core category—Living (dys)regulated and alienated young masculinity—with related categories “battling with the emotional body,” “suffering in social silence” and “balancing embodied darkness and distress.” The GT illustrates how young men navigate and manage their embodied and emotional suffering in a context of “regulative” masculine and social norms alongside insufficient social support. ..

Our results suggest that young men’s lived embodied experiences of mental disorders and suicidality can be understood as a dynamic process of internal and external “(dys)regulation and alienation.” The generated GT provides a broad tentative explanation model, contributing to theory development, and serves as a basis for gender-sensitive interventions—in both psychotherapy and physiotherapy—integrating body, mind and the social context.

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