The Association between masculinity and nonsuicidal self-injury
Several known risk factors for nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI), such as negative emotionality and deficits in emotion skills, are also associated with masculinity. Researchers and clinicians suggest that masculine norms around emotional control and self-reliance may make men more likely to engage in self-harm. Masculinity has also been implicated as a potential risk factor for suicide and other self-damaging behaviors. However, the association between masculinity and NSSI has yet to be explored. In the current study, a sample of 912 emerging adults from two universities in the Northeastern United States completed a web-based questionnaire assessing adherence to masculine norms, engagement in NSSI, and known risk factors for NSSI (demographics and number of self-injurers known). Stronger adherence to masculine norms predicted chronic NSSI (five or more episodes throughout the life span) above and beyond other known risk factors. Adherence to masculine norms was related to methods of NSSI. Clinical implications are discussed, including discussions of masculine norms in treatment settings. Future research should examine what specific masculine norms are most closely linked to NSSI and other self-damaging behaviors.
American Journal of Men's Health
Green, Jonathan D.; Kearns, Jaclyn C.; Ledoux, Annie M.; Addis, Michael E.; and Marx, Brian P., "The Association between masculinity and nonsuicidal self-injury" (2018). Psychology. 89.