“My Skill Is Putting on a Mask and Convincing People Not to Look Closer”: Silence, Secrecy and Self-Reliance in Men’s Accounts of Troubles-Telling in an Online Discussion Forum for Anxiety

Phoebe G. Drioli-Phillips, Melissa Oxlad, Brett Scholz, Amanda Lecouteur, Rebecca Feo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Although anxiety disorders are the most prevalent mental health disorder in Australia, little is known about men’s anxiety help-seeking practices. This study investigates how male users of an online discussion forum accounted for engaging in troubles-telling in an online community. Posts on an online discussion forum written by men who identify as experiencing anxiety were analysed using discursive psychology, through the identification of four interpretative repertoires: (1) orienting to troubles-telling as their purpose for posting, (2) troubles-talk as a necessary form of self-help, (3) the online community as a last resort and (4) anxiety as a hidden, secret experience. Findings demonstrate how men reproduced hegemonic masculine ideals of strength, self-reliance and emotional stoicism, while also sharing their experiences of anxiety online. This research highlights the relevance of masculine social norms in understanding anxiety help-seeking practices, and also illustrates the value of online communities in offering support to men in need.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)230-250
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Men's Studies
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2022

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Support groups
  • Online discussion forums
  • Troubles-telling

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of '“My Skill Is Putting on a Mask and Convincing People Not to Look Closer”: Silence, Secrecy and Self-Reliance in Men’s Accounts of Troubles-Telling in an Online Discussion Forum for Anxiety'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this