A new study found that male-friendly therapists reject ideological beliefs about the patriarchy, and that such beliefs are harmful to male mental health patients

June 6, 2021
332 upvotes

I found this on r/mensrightslinks by u/shit-zen-giggles. It was published just recently in June 2021 by the Psychreg Journal of Psychology.

How therapists work with men is related to their views on masculinity, patriarchy, and politics

https://np.reddit.com/r/mensrightslinks/comments/nrz4hw/how_therapists_work_with_men_is_related_to_their/

Link to study:

https://www.pjp.psychreg.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/7-john-barry-50-64.pdf

Citation:

Barry, John A.; Liddon, Louise; Walker, Robert; & Seager, Martin. (2021). How therapists work with men is related to their views on masculinity, patriarchy, and politics. Psychreg Journal of Psychology

Summary:


This study found that male-friendly therapists are less likely to be feminists, less likely to accept feminist ideological beliefs about the patriarchy, more likely to believe that their original training was not male-friendly, and more likely to believe that masculinity is not "just" a social construct.

They also found that male friendly therapists who are feminists do not believe that feminism is useful in their clinical practice. Something which they have likely learned over time; those therapists on average had more experience than therapists who still tried to apply feminist ideological dogmas to their practice. I think it says a lot that even the subset of male friendly therapists who identified as feminists still rejected feminism as a useful construct for therapy.

The authors are however worried about changes in APA guideline that might encourage new / younger therapists to adopt feminist ideologies into their practice.

Another key finding is that therapy dropout rates among men (which are higher than women), and reluctance to talk therapy in general, are likely being caused by the perception that therapists are left leaning and support feminism. Since men are more likely to lean conservative, and to reject feminism, this poses a threat to what's called the therapeutic alliance (which is basically how well the therapist and the client get along together).

It is however not true that most therapists are feminists. While this study did find that therapists leaned sightly left on average, most therapists and psychologists reject feminism, patriarchy theory, and masculinity as "just" a social construct. Despite the popularity of feminism in the social sciences, the field of psychology has long eschewed feminist ideology in place of evidence based science.

This study also suggested that focusing on feminism, patriarchy, and masculinity as a social construct, reduces the amount of control that male patients have over their thoughts and feelings, which contributes to a sense of helplessness. This is opposite of what therapy usually tries to accomplish, so the use of these ideological dogmas in therapy with men is highly questionable and goes against established principles in psychology and therapy.

As a result, the latest APA guidelines about men and masculinity were questioned, as was the use of patriarchy, privilege, and "power imbalances" between men and women in therapy. In particular, it was found that couples therapists who tried to view gender and relationships through feminist ideology were significantly less effective than therapists who used "evidence based therapy" which rejects those views. Further research into this and related topics was suggested by the researchers.

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Title A new study found that male-friendly therapists reject ideological beliefs about the patriarchy, and that such beliefs are harmful to male mental health patients
Author Oncefa2
Upvotes 332
Comments 62
Date June 6, 2021 2:08 PM UTC (5 months ago)
Subreddit /r/LeftWingMaleAdvocates
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/LeftWingMaleAdvocates/a-new-study-found-that-male-friendly-therapists.1061159
https://theredarchive.com/post/1061159
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/LeftWingMaleAdvocates/comments/ntmjw4/a_new_study_found_that_malefriendly_therapists/
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