Psychologists Declare Traditional Masculinity ‘Harmful’


The American Psychological Association (APA) has released guidelines that teach psychologists working with men and boys that “traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful.”

According to an APA announcement, the release of Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Boys and Men comes after a review of more than 40 years of research showing that men who are not emotionally expressive are damaged and end up with serious behavior problems.

According to the APA announcement:

Men commit 90 percent of homicides in the United States and represent 77 percent of homicide victims. They’re the demographic group most at risk of being victimized by violent crime. They are 3.5 times more likely than women to die by suicide, and their life expectancy is 4.9 years shorter than women’s. Boys are far more likely to be diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder than girls, and they face harsher punishments in school—especially boys of color.

“Though men benefit from patriarchy, they are also impinged upon by patriarchy,” said Ronald F. Levant, Ed.D, a professor emeritus of psychology at the University of Akron and co-editor of The Psychology of Men and Masculinities, published by APA.

APA says the guidelines teach that traditional masculinity, “marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression—is, on the whole, harmful.”

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